Equinor drops Australian wildcatNo Ceduna Sub-basin wildcats in the horizon for Equinor: Photo: Equinor.

Equinor drops Australian wildcat

Though several exploration wells are drilled offshore southern Australia, no commercial discoveries are made. Now, Equinor drops its planned wildcat.

Overview over licenses and drilled wells in the Ceduna Sub-basin. Map: Equinor.

Equinor states in a recent press release that they see no commerciality in their exploration drilling plans in the Ceduna Sub-basin. This basin lies in the Great Australian Bight of southern Australia. The planned well, Stromlo-1, was to be placed ~370 km from the nearest land, ~470 km west of the city Port Lincoln.

Several wells are drilled in this basin. According to the governmental authorities of Australia, the larger Bight Basin contains a Middle Jurassic to Late Cretaceous sedimentary succession that in the thickest depocentre, The Ceduna Sub-basin, is in excess of 15 km thick.

Nine wells were drilled in the Ceduna Sub-basin from the 60s to the 90s, without success, followed by another unsuccessful well in 2003. Altogether, 20 wells are drilled in the sub-basin and surroundings, from Port Lincoln and westwards, indicated by coloured wells on the map. No commercial discoveries are made.

There are indications of hydrocarbons in the area. Fluorescence or cut are reported from many wells, and significant oil and gas shows were reported from one well, the Greenly 1 in the southern Ceduna Sub-basin

Equinor became an operator and 100% owner of the exploration permits EPP39 and EPP40 back in June 2017. The permits cover approximately 12,000 square kilometres. Equinor also holds an offshore exploration license to the NW of Australia. Equinor’s main office in Australia is in Perth.

Text: Terje Solbakk.