23 Dec 2020
Waitsia FID a boon for gas development in the Perth Basin
Mitsui E&P Australia and Beach Energy’s Waitsia Gas Project joint venture has achieved an important milestone after reaching a final investment decision (FID) for Stage 2 Development. Key commercial agreements have now been signed with the Western Australian Government, Australian Gas Infrastructure Group (AGIG), and North West Shelf Project participants (NWSPP), allowing the ambitious joint venture to move forward pending certain government and regulatory approvals.
APPEA welcomes the the Waitsia Gas Project reaching this significant milestone. The FID means that Waitsia, located near Dongara, Western Australia, can now move into construction, set to commence from July 2021, followed by first production in the second half of 2023.
The Waitsia Stage 2 development is a major project involving the construction of a new onshore gas processing plant in the Perth Basin with a capacity of up to 250 terajoules a day, drawing from up to eight production wells over a 20-year life cycle. The project is one of several promising prospective gas fields in the region awaiting final investment, including Strike Energy’s West Errugulla project, which is slated to commence at 50 terajoules a day with a planned second phase adding another 100–200 terajoules a day on top of that.
It is a development that will bring significant economic benefits to the region in the form of job opportunities, royalty payments to the WA Government and other local spending; the project is expected to employ an average of 125 workers (growing to 200 at its peak) during construction, as well as a long-term operational workforce of around 12–15 people plus 20–30 operational and engineering support staff in Perth.
Once complete, gas will be conveyed from the Waitsia plant site via the nearby Dampier to Bunbury Natural Gas Pipeline (DBNGP). Around half of production will be exported as LNG via the Karratha Gas Plant operated by Woodside on behalf of the North West Shelf Joint Venture until at least 2028, while the remainder will be used to supply gas to the domestic WA market. Gas supplied to the domestic market will be utilised in a range of ways from supplying energy for WA homes and businesses to providing energy for mining and minerals processing. Around 60% of the project’s greenhouse gas emissions are planned to be reduced or offset from the start of production.