Otway Basin off-shore gas plan


The State Government has today (16 May 2018) released five new oil and gas exploration blocks to help build long-term supply of gas for Victorian homes and businesses.

The blocks are all located in the offshore Otway Basin in State waters (up to three nautical miles off the coast), extending from Port Campbell to the South Australian border, and are part of the national 2018 Petroleum Exploration Acreage Release.

The Geological Survey of Victoria believes that the offshore Otway Basin has the highest potential for new discoveries of gas in Victoria.

The areas being released are near major existing producing gas fields, established infrastructure and underground gas storage, including the Otway Gas Processing Plant.

Today’s release follows Cooper Energy’s commencement of drilling by the Ocean Monarch rig - the first well drilled to develop a new gas field offshore from Victoria since 2012, and the awarding to Cooper Energy of a new exploration permit in the Gippsland Basin.

An airborne gravity survey of the Otway Basin will also be conducted later this year, covering up to 30,000 square kilometres, with data made available to explorers to help them discover offshore gas.

It is part of the Government’s three-year Victorian Gas Program which is using the latest technology and research methods to get the clearest picture yet of the state’s potential gas resources.

Victoria has immense offshore resources to supply the east coast market, with only half of the gas processed in this state used by Victorian households and businesses.

The Government said it supports a domestic gas reserve and expects Australian domestic consumers to be given the first reasonable offer to buy any new gas that is discovered from the acreage release.

Companies can tender for the five new blocks to carry out exploration activities.  The closing date for applications is 15 February 2019.

Minister for Resources Tim Pallas said many Victorian homes and businesses relied on gas and the government supported new exploration and development to ensure long-term supply.

“We’re focussed on the future and planning ahead to ensure Victoria, and the east coast market, has the gas we need to support our growing population and economy.”

Source: Based on a state government media release