Otway Gas Project Moves to Next Phase

The Otway Gas Project has achieved a major milestone toward delivering gas into southeast Australia in 2006. The joint venture participants have committed to the next phase of the development and will invest $26 million in design engineering and project planning, following the recent selection of the preferred development concept. A detailed feasibility study underpins this concept selection and commercialization of the associated gasfields.

The Otway Gas Project covers the Geographe and Thylacine gas fields, which were discovered in the offshore Otway Basin 55 – 70km respectively south of Port Campbell Victoria in mid 2001. The proposed concept includes the installation of:

  • a wellhead platform with five production wells on the Thylacine reservoir;
  • a subsea manifold and three production wells on the Geographe reservoir;
  • a subsea pipeline linking the Thylacine wellhead platform and the Geographe subsea facilities to the Victorian coast;
  • a short onshore pipeline from the coast to the gas plant; and
  • an onshore gas plant located near Port Campbell.

The initial capital cost of the Otway Gas Project is forecast to be in the order of A$750 million, with further phases of expenditure over the life of the project. The Project will have an annual production rate of 60 Petajoules per annum and will supply around 10% of southeastern Australia's current gas demand from 2006 for some 10 years. Provision will be made to tie-in potential future discoveries along the pipeline route.

Woodside's Gas Business Unit Director, David Maxwell, said "This is a key milestone in realizing the Otway Gas Project and a major step forward to delivering gas to south-east Australia in 2006."

Basis of design work will start immediately, ultimately clearing the way for tenders to be called for engineering and construction of the onshore and offshore facilities, the pipeline to shore and the underground shore crossing.

It is anticipated that a final investment decision will be taken by May 2004, following completion of the engineering studies and the environmental approval process. The Project is on schedule for start up in mid 2006.

The participants in the Otway Gas Project are Woodside - 51.55% (Operator), Origin Energy Resources Limited - 29.75%, Benaris International NV - 12.70% and CalEnergy Gas (Australia) Limited - 6.00%.