Western Australia State acreage release for 2017

DMP calls for nominations from industry
Date: Tuesday, 16 May 2017

The Department of Mines and Petroleum today opened the 2017 Acreage Release at the annual Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association (APPEA) Conference in Perth.

Applications for bidding are now invited for five onshore release areas in the Canning Basin, varying in size from 5324 to 6667 square kilometres.

“The release provides explorers with new opportunities to invest in the oil and gas sector and enables industry to undertake longer term planning to support the ongoing investment in, and development of, Western Australia’s petroleum resources,” DMP Executive Director Petroleum Jeff Haworth said.

Mr Haworth said interest in the Canning Basin had increased in recent years with new oil play discoveries at Ungani in October 2011 and Ungani Far West 1 announced in March 2016.

“There has also been good oil and gas shows in the Ordovician Goldwyer Formation shale in the Theia 1 well drilled in July and August 2015,” he said.

The northern three release areas L17-1 to L17-3 are contiguous and collectively cover 17,664 square kilometres and are accessible from Broome by the Great Northern Highway.

“These are among the best explored regions of the Canning Basin where 15 wells have recorded hydrocarbon shows including Looma 1, Acacia 2, Mirbella 1 and 2 and Sally May 1,” Mr Haworth said.

The southern  two release areas L17-4 and L17-5 are also contiguous and collectively cover 12,905 square kilometres and are regarded as frontier acreage with much less on-ground exploration than the northern three release areas.

“They may contain salt-related traps in areas of the basin that lack major block faulting and are accessible by the Kidson Track, the Kiwirrkurra Road and the Canning Stock Route,” Mr Haworth said.

The closest well is Gibb-Maitland 1, drilled during December 2012.

Applications can only be made online, and it is recommended to register two days before bids close at www.dmp.wa.gov.au/pgr

The nomination period for the 2017 acreage release will close at 4pm WST on 1 February 2018. Late nominations will not be considered.
Further information is available at the acreage release web page.

Once the most deserving bidder is announced, they must first successfully gain Native Title agreement before an Exploration Permit (EP) is granted. Until that occurs no petroleum activity can be undertaken on the release areas.

Once an EP is granted by DMP it is for a period of six years.

The granting of an EP, for a six year period, only gives the title holder the exclusive right to explore. Petroleum activities which the title holder intends to carry out are rigorously assessed and  approved by DMP before work can begin and, where appropriate, multi-agency approvals will be sought by DMP such as from other agencies, such as the Environmental Protection Authority.

Proposed activity adjacent to sensitive areas such as national parks, towns or drinking water protection areas would be assessed under the State’s multi-agency approvals process.

Petroleum companies are legally required to obtain consent from farmers and private land owners and occupiers before they can carry out activities on their land. This consent can include agreements concerning compensation.