Oil and Gas News

WA petroleum acreage released for exploration

petroleum exploration in Western Australia

Western Australian Mines and Petroleum Minister Bill Johnston has invited applicants to bid on eight areas for petroleum exploration in Western Australia.

The blocks are based in the Northern Carnarvon Basin and Amadeus Basin, and vary in size from 390 to 10,282 square kilometres. Seven of the blocks are onshore and one is offshore in state waters.

WA releases acreage for petroleum exploration through a competitive bidding system.

“The McGowan Government will continue to create opportunities within the States natural resources industry and exploration is the bedrock of ongoing success,” Johnston said.

“The petroleum sector continues to be a key contributor to WA’s economic success with sales of more than $23 billion in the 2020-21 financial year.”

Successful bidders may apply for a petroleum exploration permit that allows the company to conduct exploration activities within the specified title for six years.

All petroleum activities are rigorously assessed and approved by the Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety before work can begin. Other approvals related to environmental and Native Title considerations may also be required.

The application period for this acreage release closes at 4pm on Thursday June 16, 2022.

The Amadeus Basin is exposed over about 170,000 km2 in central Australia. The majority of the basin lies within the Northern Territory, but about 30,000 km2 extends into Western Australia (WA).

The Northern Carnarvon Basin, and in particular the Barrow and Dampier Sub-basins, is regarded as the premier hydrocarbon basin of Australia, and is one of the more intensely explored areas of the country. The basin lies mainly offshore, extending north from the Pilbara Craton to the continental–oceanic crust boundary, and covers about 500,000 km2.

“Any acreage awarded will be subject to the State Governments policy on hydraulic fracturing, which means this extraction process will not be permitted on these blocks,” Johnston said.