Esso Deepwater Gippsland, a subsidiary of ExxonMobil, has commenced a new offshore gas exploration drilling program in the Gippsland Basin.
The company is investing $120 million to drill two exploration wells in its 100 per cent owned VIC/P70 block, which is located approximately 90 km off Victoria’s East Gippsland coast.
The wells, named Baldfish and Hairtail, will be drilled by Diamond Offshore’s Ocean Monarch semi-submersible drilling rig and is expected to take several months.
Esso Deepwater Gippsland Chairman Richard Owen said the company was aiming to bring new gas to the Australian market.
“The two wells will be drilled in water depths ranging from 350 to 700 m, amongst the deepest water depths drilled in the Gippsland Basin,” he said.
“These wells are targeting gas prospects, with the objective of proving up resources for timely development and contribution to the Australian domestic gas market.
“This $120 million exploration drilling program demonstrates our commitment to bringing new gas supplies to the domestic market.”
ExxonMobil also recently invested $4.5 billion in the Kipper Tuna Turrum offshore project, as well as $1 billion in the Longford Gas Conditioning Plant.