Progress update on the abandonment plans for Esso Australia’s Gudgeon-1 and Terakihi-1 exploration wells in the Gippsland Basin 

Community Consultation Session
As operator of some of Australia’s oldest oil and gas fields, Esso Australia is committed to decommissioning our Bass Strait offshore facilities safely and effectively.

We have substantial experience in safely and effectively decommissioning facilities to achieve positive outcomes across the globe, and we are excited to be part of Australia’s growing decommissioning industry.

As part of our decommissioning activities, Esso Australia is planning to undertake offshore work to plug and abandon (P&A) two exploration wells, Gudgeon-1 and Terakihi-1, which are located approximately 85 kilometres off the Gippsland coastline in water depths of approximately 300-400 metres. 

The proposed plan will see P&A well activities undertaken by the Helix Q7000 Light Well Intervention Vessel, which operates in accordance with current international safety and environmental standard. No seismic activity will be required.

The wells are not located within any established or proposed Commonwealth or State Marine Protected Areas, Critical Habitats or Threatened Ecological Communities. 

It is recognised that the proposed activities will overlap with existing fisheries with the establishment of a 500-metre Petroleum Safety Zone (PSZ) around both Gudgeon-1 and Terakihi-1 subsea wells. 

This work is imperative to our decommissioning efforts, as it will eliminate the potential risk of loss of hydrocarbon containment and will remove obstructions and snag points for fishing and future users of the sea.

Esso Australia has evaluated potential impacts and risks to the marine environment occurring from proposed activities. You can read our control measures in our Exploration Well Plug and Abandonment bulletin, which can be found here.

Prior to commencing and throughout our decommissioning activities, we have continued to identify and actively engage with key stakeholders across the Gippsland region. This ongoing consultation has played an essential role in how we align our approach and ensure the essential work that we are undertaking meets the community’s needs and expectations. 

If you would like to learn more about our decommissioning process and the approach we are considering for the plug and abandonment of Gudgeon-1 and Terakihi-1, we welcome you to come along to one of our two community information sessions we are hosting in Sale, Victoria. Please see details below.

Session 1
Date: Wednesday February 15, 2023
Time: 12pm – 1pm
Location: The Drawing Room at The Criterion (90 Macalister Street, Sale Victoria 3850)

Session 2
Date: Wednesday February 15, 2023
Time: 5:30pm – 6:30pm
Location: The Drawing Room at The Criterion (90 Macalister Street, Sale Victoria 3850)

Please register your interest in attending at by Monday February 13, 2023. If you cannot attend the sessions but would like further information, you can also reach out to the aforementioned email address with your queries.