Australia's 3D Oil to Farm Out Stakes in T/49P Permit in the Otway Basin

Australia's junior oil and gas exploration company 3D Oil Ltd. provided Thursday its quarterly activities report for the period that ended March 31 covering its involvement in the local upstream sector.


T/49, Otway Basin, offshore Tasmania

It is clear that eastern Australia gas market will need significant new supply in the medium term as indicated by the quantum increase in demand associated with liquefied natural gas (LNG) export projects.

Eastern Australia gas is one of the few energy markets in the world that can point to a strong demand environment and so, despite the current low oil price environment and its impact on the exploration industry, 3D Oil believes T/49P is well positioned to attract investment from the industry -- be it domestic or international.

With this in mind, 3D Oil has commenced a farmout process to engage with large petroleum companies -- companies of sufficient scale to assist with funding the next phase of exploration in T/49P. This will include industry participants from around the world who are looking to invest in significant new gas plays.

3D Oil is well positioned to farmout with a large interest and operatorship. The company is leveraging the positive results of the Flanagan survey and the compelling resource potential of Flanagan and the permit to attract the best possible farmin terms for future exploration drilling and seismic in this highly prospective gas exploration area. Priority will be given to ensure the drilling of the Flanagan Prospect as soon as possible.

3D Oil's estimate for Prospective Resources in T/49P is 6.82 trillion cubic feet (Tcf) (best estimate) with the Flanagan Prospect alone 1.38 Tcf (best estimate). The Flanagan feature is defined on state-of-the-art 3D seismic and represents an exciting ready-to-drill prospect which is considered to be an analogue, albeit larger, to the adjacent Thylacine gas field.

T/49P Background

In the T/49P permit 3D Oil holds a 70 percent interest and operatorship in joint venture with Beach Energy (30 percent). The permit is now in Year 3 having met the Year 2 permit commitment with the acquisition and processing of the Flanagan 3D seismic survey. An application for suspension and extension of Year 3 to allow finalization of permit mapping has been submitted to National Offshore Petroleum Titles Administrator (NOPTA).

T/49P is located immediately southeast of the largest producing gas field in the Otway Basin and contains a number of prospective features for gas exploration. It covers an area of 1,915 square miles (4,960 square kilometers) in water depths of generally no greater than 328 feet (100 meters). The north of the permit is now covered by 376 square miles (974 square kilometers) of modern 3D seismic, while the area to the south remains lightly explored covered by a broad grid of 2D seismic data of varying vintages. Only two early exploration wells have been drilled in the permit (in 1967 and 1970) and the region has largely been overlooked by the industry despite the proximity of the Thylacine and Geographe producing gas fields.

3D Oil's view of the potential for gas discoveries in this permit has been strongly supported by new 3D seismic data which significantly improves prospect imaging and provides greater detail of the geology. Good indicators of reservoir and seal units analogous to the neighboring Thylacine and Geographe fields are evident from the data. Within this region gas accumulations are typically associated with seismic amplitude anomalies, including at Thylacine and Geographe. 3D Oil has identified similar seismic amplitude anomalies on the Flanagan 3D seismic data set. These amplitude anomalies increase the prospectivity for gas, particularly within the Flanagan Prospect area, although the extent to which these anomalies indicate the presence of gas will be the focus of further interpretation and analysis.

T/49P has significant resource potential beyond the Flanagan Prospect, with an additional 5 leads identified and mapped across the whole permit. The permit has the potential to become a substantial new gas province which could provide a valuable contribution to the east coast gas market.

VIC/P57, Gippsland Basin, offshore Victoria

3D Oil has a 24.9 percent interest in the VIC/P57 exploration permit in the offshore Gippsland Basin.

The permit has entered Year 4 for which the commitment is for geological and geophysical studies. Significant prospectivity remains in the VIC/P57 permit and the joint venture will now re-focus its technical program towards gas exploration to potentially serve the tight eastern states wholesale natural gas market.


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