Oil and Gas News

Beach starts preparation for Otway project

Beach Energy has received the first of seven Xmas trees and controls from partners Baker Hughes and Aker Solutions in preparation for its Otway phase four campaign offshore Victoria.

The Xmas trees are the 55-tonne units that will reside above the new well head locations and remotely control all down hole and seabed safety and production systems for the wells.

The Otway project will ensure ongoing production at the Otway gas plant, which supplies natural gas to Victoria. Activities will occur in Commonwealth waters 32 to 80 km from Port Campbell, Victoria.

Activities will run over several phases, starting with assessing seabed locations and existing infrastructure, drilling wells, installing additional seabed infrastructure to tie-in wells to the existing platform and pipeline.

Last month, the company was given the green light by national regulator to drill a single exploration well offshore Victoria in the Otway Basin.

The Artisan-1 well is 32km off Victoria’s southwest coast at a water depth of 71m.

Beach experienced delays at the beginning of last year when it was forced to terminate a contract with Ocean Onyx rig operator, Diamond Offshore Drilling.

The company cancelled the agreement after the semi-submersible Ocean Onyx rig was late arriving in Victorian waters for the start of the Otway Basin offshore drilling campaign, which was scheduled to commence in the first or second quarter of 2020.

Beach, with the support of its joint venture partner O.G. Energy, then executed an offshore drilling agreement with Diamond Offshore Drilling for the project in August last year.

The company outlined that the first well in the drilling sequence was expected to be the Artisan-1 exploration well, followed by a series of development wells in the Geographe and Thylacine gas fields.

“The agreement, which is at a globally competitive rig rate for deep water semi-submersible rigs, includes provisions for COVID-19 related costs and delays,” Beach advised.

Outlined in the environmental plan to NOPSEMA, Beach advised that drilling is anticipated to occur within the period from January 1,  2021 to June 30, 2021.

The well is expected to take 35-55 days to drill, depending on the final work program and potential operational delays.