SAN RAMON, California -- Chevron has announced the results of a seven-well exploration and appraisal program for the Wheatstone and Iago fields in northwest Australia. Following the completion and analysis of the appraisal program, the fields are estimated to hold enough natural gas resources to support a two-train Wheatstone liquefied natural gas (LNG) and domestic gas project.
Chevron plans to locate the Wheatstone project at Ashburton North near Onslow and expects to enter front-end engineering and design in the second half of this year.
Wheatstone is in the WA-253-P and WA-17-R 125 mi (200 km) north of Onslow in water depths of around 650 ft (200 m).
The adjacent Iago field was discovered in 2000 and spans two retention permits, WA-17-R, which is wholly owned by Chevron Australia, and WA-16-R, in which Shell Development (Australia) Pty Ltd. has a one-third share, with Chevron holding the remainder.
The offshore northwest shelf of Australia is one of four exploration focus areas for Chevron. During 2009, the company plans to conduct a large drilling program with two rigs scheduled to drill multiple exploration and appraisal wells in its operated acreage.
"The Wheatstone project, together with Gorgon, is an important part of Chevron's strategy to develop its large natural gas resource base in Australia and be a leading supplier of LNG," George Kirkland, executive vice president, Chevron Global Upstream and Gas. "In support of these two major capital projects, the company intends to undertake its largest-ever drilling campaign in Australia."