ExxonMobil Australia is considering the import of LNG into eastern Australia to help ease the predicted shortfall of gas supply from 2021 and protect its existing market share.
The company also is increasing its exploration program in Bass Strait as well as considering the development of a field extension called West Barracouta.
“Combined with the existing Gippsland basin resource and infrastructure, an LNG import facility could ensure that ExxonMobil can continue to meet our customers’ needs,” the company said.
The LNG facility would be timed to become operational by 2022.
Output from the Gippsland basin, dominated by ExxonMobil and the mainstay of Victorian gas production and supply for the last 50 years, is expected to fall to half of its current levels by 2022.
If ExxonMobil’s plan to import LNG proceeds, it will compete with two other import proposals: AGL Energy’s planned import terminal at Crib Point in Victoria to bring in gas from 2021 and the Japanese JERA consortium’s planned terminal at Port Kembla on the New South Wales coast to begin imports from 2020.