Shell proposes floating LNG plant development for Greater Sunrise

Shell Development (Australia) Pty. Ltd. proposed to other owners of the Greater Sunrise fields in the Timor Sea off Australia that they use floating liquefied natural gas technology to develop that complex. Shell said this would be the first floating LNG project. Earlier this year, another consortium concluded the floating LNG concept is a viable option for deepwater development.


HOUSTON, Aug. 9 -- Shell Development (Australia) Pty. Ltd. proposed to other owners of the Greater Sunrise fields in the Timor Sea off Australia that they use floating liquefied natural gas technology to develop that complex.

Shell said this would be the first floating LNG project. Earlier this year, another consortium concluded the floating LNG concept is a viable option for deepwater development (OGJ Online, Apr. 9, 2001, p. 62).

The facility proposed by Shell would be located on a barge close to the drilling platform. It would also be able to compress gas for delivery by pipeline to Darwin.

Chief Executive Officer of SDA Alan Parsley said, �This breakthrough results from an innovative combination of three well-established technologies: floating production storage and offtake (FPSO) vessels for oil production, LNG shipping, and LNG plant design.

"The floating LNG approach to development of Sunrise offers cost reductions over construction of an onshore plant and thus generates commercial returns for shareholders in Sunrise, and substantial tax revenues which will deliver benefits for the people of Australia and East Timor," said Parsley. He also said the project would release less greenhouse gas emissions than an onshore plant.

Earlier this year, partner Phillips Petroleum Co. outlined a $3-3.5 billion onshore LNG plant proposal for Greater Sunrise development. That plan involves El Paso Corp. in a project to deliver Greater Sunrise LNG to Southern California.

The partners will compare Shell's proposal to that of Phillips.

Earlier this year, Phillips increased its stake in the Bonaparte basin project to 30% (OGJ Online, Feb. 23, 2001). Operator Woodside owns 33.44%; Shell Development Australia, 26.56%; and Osaka Gas Corp., 10%.

Greater Sunrise is made up of the Sunrise, Sunset, and Troubadour fields.

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