Japanese oil and gas firm Inpex plans to drill an exploration well in the Browse Basin offshore Western Australia and has this week submitted an environmental plan for the regulators to review.
Inpex, which operates the offshore block located in the vicinity of its Ichthys LNG project, is proposing to drill an exploration well in exploration permit area WA-343-P, in the Browse Basin. The permit area is wholly within Commonwealth waters located approximately 400 km north of Derby, Western Australia.
The petroleum activity will consist of a pre-drilling site survey, and the drilling and evaluation of an exploration well, where water depths are approximately 350 m. Drilling will be conducted using a semi-submersible mobile offshore drilling unit (MODU).
According to the offshore regulator NOPSEMA, the pre-drilling site survey is expected to start in the second half of 2019. The drilling operations are scheduled to start in the first half of 2020.
The exact start of date of the exploration works is subject to offshore rig availability, operational efficiencies, weather and analysis of geophysical data collected during the pre-drill site survey.