First gas uplifts Chevron’s Gorgon project to next level, setting the stage for more LNG exports
Chevron Australia, a subsidiary of the U.S. oil and gas giant Chevron, and its Gorgon Joint Venture partners have achieved the first gas production from the Gorgon stage two development off the northwest coast of Western Australia. This supports long-term energy supply as it is expected to bring more liquefied natural gas (LNG) to the energy market.
Chevron’s Gorgon development expands the existing subsea gas gathering network of the Gorgon project, which the U.S. energy giant describes as one of the world’s largest natural gas projects and the largest single resource project in Australia’s history. This project exports liquefied natural gas to customers across the Asia Pacific and produces domestic gas for the Western Australian market.
The Gorgon gas field is located around 130 kilometres off the northwest coast of Western Australia and 65 kilometres northwest of Barrow Island in water depths of approximately 200 metres. The initial field development was commissioned in 2015, consisting of wells and subsea infrastructure, including the feed gas pipeline. This led to the first LNG cargo departing Barrow Island on 21 March 2016 while the domestic gas supply to the Western Australian market began in December 2016.
This field development is expanded by Gorgon stage 2 (GS2), which enriches the Gorgon and Jansz-Io gas fields with 11 additional wells and accompanying offshore production pipelines and subsea infrastructure to maintain future gas supply to the three existing LNG trains and the gas processing facilities on Barrow Island. The Gorgon gas development is expected to have a nominal operational design life of 50 years.
Mark Hatfield, Chevron Australia managing director, commented “Gorgon stage two first gas marks the next phase of the Gorgon project and demonstrates our commitment to providing reliable and affordable energy that supports the region’s energy security. Importantly, the team completed the complex offshore installation work, totalling more than 3.2 million hours to date, without any serious injuries or incidents.
“The development supports the longevity of the Gorgon project and the continuation of its already significant ongoing benefits including highly skilled local employment, economic activity as well as state and federal government revenue for decades to come.”
Chevron believes that this project will continue to be an important pillar of the Australian economy in the coming decades, thus, unlocking this energy in the U.S. oil major’s view puts Australia in a prime position to meet future demand and provide “a clean-burning fuel, both at home and overseas.”
The Chevron-operated Gorgon project is a joint venture between the Australian subsidiaries of Chevron (47.3 per cent), ExxonMobil (25 per cent), Shell (25 per cent), Osaka Gas (1.25 per cent), Tokyo Gas (1 per cent) and JERA (0.417 per cent).
This is not the only project Chevron operates in Australia, as aside from Gorgon, Chevron also acts as the operator of the Wheatstone natural gas project, holds an interest in the North West Shelf project, and operates – what it deems to be – Australia’s largest onshore oilfield on Barrow Island.