Cobden Timboon Coast Times
Cooper Energy strikes gas in Otway Basin

GAS has been discovered off Peterborough – the first new discovery in the Otway Basin in 11 years.

Cooper Energy announced the exploration well Annie-1 had made a new gas field discovery on Friday.

The well reached a total depth (TD) of 2442 metres measured depth rotary table (MDRT) at 9am last Wednesday, September 4.

According to an Australian Stock Exchange (ASX) announcement from the company, within the Annie-1 borehole, the Waarre C and Waarre A Formation sandstones productive in the Otway Basin were penetrated.

“The Waarre C primary target was encountered at 2241 metres MDRT, comprising a gross gas column of 70 metres with gas-on-rock at its base,” the statement said.

“The net pay thickness is 62 metres. The deeper Waarre A sandstone was encountered at 2341 metres MDRT and was water wet. The analysis was carried out using Logging While Drilling (LWD) data.”

Cooper Energy managing director David Maxwell described the Annie-1 gas discovery as a “solid and promising result” from the first well in the program.

“Annie-1 is the first offshore gas exploration well Cooper Energy has drilled in Australia and the first of an $80 million drill campaign by the Joint Venture this year to find new gas supply for south east Australia,” he said.

“We are very pleased with the success at Annie. It is very encouraging for future exploration in the offshore Otway Basin and for our strategy to build gas production around the hub of the existing Minerva Gas Plant.

“Preliminary analysis of the geological data from Annie-1 is consistent with the mid-range of our pre-drill estimates.”

Mr Maxwell said in the coming months the company would complete subsurface assessments and analysis to refine estimates of field size and to inform decisions regarding field development.

Cooper Energy – and Mitsui E and P Australia which also hold a 50 per cent interest in VIC/P44 – currently produces gas from the nearby Casino, Henry and Netherby fields.

“The presence of subsea infrastructure and future access to the existing Minerva Gas Plant enables the development economics for field discoveries in the region,” the ASX announcement states.

“The timing of any development will depend on rig scheduling for the drilling of a development well.

“With this proviso, a favourable decision on field development could result in the commencement of production from the Annie gas field in the latter half of calendar 2021.”

The Diamond Offshore Ocean Monarch drilling rig is about to start preparations to plug and abandon Annie-1, consistent with the work program previously announced.

Following this, the rig is scheduled to move to drill the second well in the two well program, Elanora-1.

The Elanora-1 site is 23 kilometres south west of Annie-1.