Bass, Otway exploration program starting

Groups led by Beach Petroleum Ltd., Adelaide, are about to begin a three-well exploratory campaign in lightly explored parts of the Bass and Otway basins off southeastern Australia.

By OGJ editors
HOUSTON, Oct. 15 -- Groups led by Beach Petroleum Ltd., Adelaide, are about to begin a three-well exploratory campaign in lightly explored parts of the Bass and Otway basins off southeastern Australia.

Beach will operate the three wells using the West Triton jack up. Drilling is to extend into early 2009.

Two of the wells will be drilled in the Bass Strait southeast of Yolla and White Ibis gas fields off northern Tasmania.

PeeJay-1 in T/39P is projected to 2,133 m to test for oil in the Tertiary Upper Eastern View Group, which produces at the two gas fields. The drillsite is in less than 100 m of water about 60 km offshore northwest of Launceston. Beach is earning a 50% interest, and Benaris Petroleum NV holds the other 50%.

Spikey Beach-1 in T/38P is projected to 2,088 m to probe the same formation for oil. Beach is earning an 80% interest, and Galveston Mining (Cue Energy) and Exoil each hold 10%.

The third well, Fermat-1, will be drilled to 3,500 m to test a large Otway basin gas prospect in less than 40 m of water in VIC/P46 about 11 km west of Portland in far western Victoria near South Australian waters. Interests are Beach 50% and Mitwell Energy Resources and Essential Petroleum Resources 25% each.

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