ConocoPhillips gets approval for Barossa development offshore Australia

ConocoPhillips and its partners SK E&S Australia and Santos have received regulatory approval for the development of the Barossa project located offshore about 300 kilometers north of Darwin, Northern Territory.

The national offshore Petroleum Safety and Environmental Management Authority (NOPSEMA) approved the development concept includes a permanently moored FPSO facility, subsea production system, supporting in-field subsea infrastructure in the Barossa field and a subsea gas export pipeline.

The FPSO facility will separate the natural gas and condensate extracted from the field with the condensate exported directly from the FPSO facility to offtake tankers in the Barossa offshore development area and the dry gas transported via a subsea gas export pipeline for onshore processing.

While appropriate commercial arrangements are yet to be put in place, it is proposed to connect the new subsea gas export pipeline to the existing Bayu-Undan to Darwin gas export pipeline which feeds the onshore Darwin LNG facility at Wickham Point, NOPSEMA’s statement reads.

his would allow transport of dry gas from the Barossa field to Darwin for liquefaction and export. Gas from the Barossa field is set to replace the existing supply from the Bayu-Undan field following its anticipated depletion in 2022.

NOPSEMA notes that the new gas export pipeline route is still subject to refinement, however, a corridor has been identified for the purposes of the early stage offshore project proposal (OPP) to allow flexibility for placement pending further engineering and environmental investigations.

Potential future staged development in the smaller Caldita field to the south in retention lease NT/RL6 has also been allowed for in the development concept.

The expected LNG and condensate production rates are approximately 3.7 million tonnes per annum and 1.5 million barrels per year, respectively.

The life of the project is expected to be approximately 25 years from first gas, which is targeted for 2023.