Exclusives

Wheatstone, LNG, Australia, Asia, gas

Even though oil prices remain in the low US $30 range, Australasian countries continue the push for natural gas resources.

MacArthur Basin, Australia, Aubrey McClendon, AEP Energy

Some industry observers have likened the basin to the Haynesville Shale in Louisiana, where production peaked at 100 billion cubic feet per day.

Leigh Creek Energy, gas, South Australia, David Shearwood

Former fund manager David Shearwood has big plans to turn Leigh Creek Energy into an underground coal gasification producer by 2018, and in the process, offer hope of future employment to the hundreds of workers affected by the Leigh Creek coalmine shutdown.

The Northern Territory government has shot down Palatine Energy’s plans to extract tight oil in the Watarrka national park, a move company managing director David Falvey has described as profoundly disappointing. 

Woodside Petroleum, LNG, Q3, third quarter, production, LNG, oil, prices

The Western Australia-based company reported that its revenue fell 44.6 percent year-on-year due to lower oil prices.

Deepwater International

Santos has been awarded two exploration permits close to its existing acreage in the vicinity of the giant ongoing Ichthys LNG development in the Browse Basin offshore Western Australia.

The giant Inpex-operated Ichthys LNG Project has hit a couple of significant milestones, with the start of deepwater pipelay work on the 889-km gas export pipeline and the start of the development drilling program.

Browse FLNG development operator Woodside has pushed back its schedule for the large project to focus further on reducing costs, according to CEO Peter Coleman.

Plans for a newbuild semisubmersible production facility off North Western Australia look to be back on the development path. 

A production test is to get underway on an oil discovery offshore Brazil that is expanding nicely in terms of its size and scope as operator Karoon Gas Australia continues to firm up more reserves.

Exploration

The sale fits with BHP's effort to shift its petroleum focus to the U.S. and more on oil, while boosting Woodside's resources without any exploration spending at a time when weak oil and gas prices have dented earnings.

The acquisition price includes a future payment, or contingent value right, that would be tied to the final estimates of the size of the Elk and Antelope fields following appraisals this year.

The companies are looking to market 13 fields, licenses and associated infrastructure held in the Gippsland Basin joint venture. The venture in Australia's Victoria state began operations in 1969, according to BHP's website.

David Maxwell, managing director, said Cooper Energy delivered a 260% increase in proved and probable oil reserves in KSO. Production increased to about 800 barrels per day of oil, he added. 

J. Thomas Wilson, Magellan’s president and CEO, said Mereenie’s current estimated production is less than 1 Mboe/d, and noted that the Mereenie bonus was not recorded in condensed consolidated financial statements.

Production

The five wells will be drilled back-to-back in the program, which will probably last about two and a half months, Bengal said. 

The circle of condensate suppliers is small, though; and Australia has the inside track on selling to Asia, especially with some Middle East producers building their own splitters, Reuters said.

GE Oil & Gas (NYSE:GE) has started production of four HP/HT dynamic flexible risers destined for the world’s largest floating liquefied natural gas (FLNG) facility, Prelude, to be operated by Shell offshore Western Australia, GE said in a news release.

The INPEX-operated Ichthys LNG Project announced a key milestone this week when it completed the installation of 140 km of rigid subsea flowlines offshore Western Australia.

The project includes the Stickle, Crosby, Tanglehead, Moondyne, Wild Bull and Ravensworth fields. It also includes the tie back of the Stickle 9 well to the existing Tanglehead manifold, Fugro said in the release.

Subsea Engineering

Woodside Petroleum Ltd. has agreed Sept. 5 to buy half of BHP Billiton Ltd.’s stake in the Scarborough area gas fields off Western Australia for $400 million, in a move that could help speed a decision to develop the long delayed project.

In a sign that the tide is starting to turn for the offshore oil and gas sector, Woodside Energy Ltd. and partner Mitsui E&P Australia have agreed to spend $1.9 billion to develop the Greater Enfield reserves offshore Western Australia.

TGS has begun its Northwest Shelf Renaissance 2-D seismic survey offshore Northwest Australia, aiming to provide “enhanced imaging through to the deeper stratigraphic section of the Dampier, Beagle and Bedout sub-basins and Exmouth Plateau.”

Woodside has decided to put its Browse FLNG project off Australia on ice after completing FEED work on the scheme.

A new report has found that the collapse in global oil prices during the past 12 months is now officially decimating oil and gas exploration activity in Australia—the lifeblood of feedstock for existing and future oil and gas projects.

Technology

Grant King has led Origin since it peeled off from Boral Ltd. in 2000, and he headed the energy arm of Boral for six years before that, Reuters reported.

Lakes Oil, a junior oil and gas explorer in Australia, shares sank 50% on Aug. 31 in their first trading since a fracking ban by the Victoria state was announced, and the stock was the second most active on the Australian exchange.

The bans come despite a large portion of eastern Australia's gas being produced from Queensland and New South Wales CSG developments, and deal a blow to manufacturers who have been clamoring for more of the fuel to help keep prices down.

Victoria has banned onshore gas developments including fracking, and New South Wales has restricted developments, limiting new supply, Reuters reported.

OneSubsea will supply a subsea production system and a dual multiphase boosting system for the Greater Enfield Project offshore northwest Australia, according to a news release.