Australia’s Woodside is forging ahead with its Scarborough giant gas project offshore Western Australia with first liquefied natural gas exports from its feedstock targeted for 2026.

Woodside has received key primary approvals from the Commonwealth-Western Australian Joint Authority to support execution of the Scarborough project.

The partners have received an offer for the pipeline licence to construct and operate the Scarborough gas pipeline in Commonwealth waters.

Approval has also been granted for the project’s Field Development Plan, which enables Woodside to start petroleum recovery operations from Petroleum Production Licences WA-61-L and WA-62-L.

The co-venturers last November took the final investment decision on the US$12 billion Scarborough and Pluto Train 2 projects.

Scarborough gas processed through Pluto Train 2 will be one of the lowest carbon intensity sources of LNG delivered to customers in North Asia, with the first LNG cargo targeted in four years’ time.

Woodside chief executive Meg O’Neill said the pipeline licence and field development plan are among the final primary Commonwealth and Western Australian State Government approvals required to develop the Scarborough resource.

“Developing Scarborough delivers value for Woodside shareholders and significant long-term benefits locally and nationally, including thousands of jobs, taxation revenue and energy security here and abroad.

Supporting decarbonisation goals

“The Scarborough reservoir contains only 0.1% carbon dioxide, and Scarborough gas processed through the efficient and expanded Pluto LNG facility supports the decarbonisation goals of our customers in Asia,” she said.

The Scarborough field lies approximately 375 kilometres off the coast of Western Australia and is estimated to contain 11.1 trillion cubic feet of dry gas.

The field will be exploited via a floating production unit with eight wells drilled in the initial phase and thirteen wells drilled over the life of the Scarborough field.

The gas will be transported to Pluto LNG through a new approximate 430-kilometre trunkline.

US contractor McDermott is constructing the FPU; subsea hardware, risers and flowlines will be supplied by Subsea Integration Alliance; and Valaris will perform the development drilling. Woodside has contracted Europipe for the trunkline pipe that will be installed by Saipem.

The Scarborough Joint Venture comprises Woodside with 73.5% and BHP Petroleum on 26.5%.