Chris Wilson, President Australia West, ConocoPhilips, has revealed Darwin LNG has promising options for backfill and expansion opportunities to extend the life of the project beyond currently projected depletion dates.

Speaking recently at the South East Asia Australia Offshore & Onshore Conference in Darwin, Wilson said the Bayu-Undan field is maturing in line with expectations, but Darwin LNG would need a new source of gas from around 2022.

He said the project is uniquely positioned to support the next brownfield development with the operator already committed to a Darwin LNG Train 2 feasibility study.

ConocoPhillips believes the Barossa Project is a leading candidate for backfill. 3D seismic data has been acquired, and Barossa-5 & 6 wells have been successfully drilled. The operator has progressed pre-FEED and is looking to complete work to progress to FEED in early 2018, with a focus on reducing development costs.

At this stage ConocoPhillips will be looking to identify opportunities for Australian companies to supply goods and services. FID is planned for 2019 with first gas expected late 2023.

According to Wilson, the backfill remains marginal despite the advantages of the existing capacity at Darwin LNG. Emphasizing the need for Australia to remain competitive with emerging regulatory and government risks, he said Darwin LNG remains confident in the business case for backfill.

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