Gorgon field development project clears another hurdle

Development of the Greater Gorgon fields, off Australia’s northwest coast, received a major boost Aug. 25 when the Australian government gave the project critical environmental approvals, appending an additional 28 conditions.

Warren R. True
OGJ Chief Technology Editor-LNG/Gas Processing

HOUSTON, Aug. 27 -- Development of the Greater Gorgon fields, off Australia’s northwest coast, received a major boost Aug. 25 when the Australian government gave the project critical environmental approvals, appending an additional 28 conditions.

Gorgon’s project scope includes three, 5-million tonne/year LNG trains; one of the world's largest—according to Chevron—carbon dioxide-injection projects; and a gas plant. The $42-billion project will be operated by the Australian subsidiary of Chevron (50%) in joint venture with Australian subsidiaries of ExxonMobil Corp. (25%) and Royal Dutch Shell PLC (25%; OGJ, Aug. 24, 2009, 11; OGJ Online, Aug. 11, 2009).

Chevron Australia Managing Director Roy Krzywosinski spoke to the environmental concerns that have dogged the project and the 28 additional conditions: "The Gorgon project has been deliberately sited to avoid areas of particular conservation significance and the three-train Gorgon project will have minimal additional environmental impact when compared to the already-approved two-train project.”

Gorgon has a resource base of more than 40 tcf of natural gas and an estimated economic life of at least 40 years from the time of start-up, Krzywosinski said. It is Australia's largest single resource project.

Contact Warren R. True at warrent@ogjonline.com.

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