Esso Australia is confident it will bring new gas supply to the domestic market this year as the West Barracouta project offshore Victoria nears completion.
The development is part of the company’s continued investment in the Gippsland Basin and will be tied back to the exisiting Barracouta infrastructure in the Bass Strait.
The ExxonMobil Australia subsidiary advised that following the arrival of the Subsea 7 Seven Eagle Diving support vessel in Victoria this month, the company is on track to have West Barracouta gas flowing to the Australian domestic gas market this year.
Chairman Nathan Fay said the Esso-BHP Gippsland joint venture had been the largest supplier of gas to the eastern Australia market for more than 50 years.
“Over this period, our operations have delivered more than four billion barrels of oil and 10 trillion cubic feet of natural gas to Australia. This is more than half of all the oil ever produced in Australia, and enough gas to power almost every home in Australia for a decade,” Fay said.
“Today, Esso continues to provide our Gippsland gas directly to Australia’s domestic market, where it’s used to power Australian homes and businesses.”
The new project builds on more than $5.5 billion invested by the Gippsland Basin JV in other recent projects to increase gas supply for Australia, including the Kipper Tuna Turrum offshore project and the Longford gas conditioning plant.
“With production from the Gippsland Basin’s legacy fields now in decline after more than 50 years of production, additional investment will be required to supply Australians with ongoing, reliable access to the affordable natural gas to which they’ve grown accustomed,” Fay added.
“Investment in Australia’s energy future will rely on governments and regulators continuing to deliver a supportive policy environment that incentivises businesses to develop Australia’s energy resources.”
The development of West Barracouta involves drilling two gas production wells and constructing associated subsea gas production facilities to access gas in the existing Barracouta field.