SANTOS has sanctioned a US$3.6bn investment in the Barossa gas project off Australia’s Northern Territory, extending the life of the Darwin LNG plant and marking the largest investment in the country’s oil and gas sector since 2012. Concerns about the climate impacts of the project have prompted one group to label the project “a carbon bomb”.
The Barossa development includes a floating production, storage and offloading (FPSO) vessel, subsea production wells, supporting subsea infrastructure and a gas export pipeline tied into the existing Bayu-Undan-to-Darwin LNG pipeline. The Barossa field is located around 300 km north of Darwin and the first production of gas is expected in the first half of 2025.
John Robert, a process engineer and industrial economist who wrote an analysis of Barossa for the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA) said: “This makes the Barossa to Darwin project ‘a CO2 emissions factory with an LNG byproduct’ – a truly questionable investment in a rapidly evolving market.”