Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Protection measures from Minister won't go far: JPP - ABC Kimberley WA - Australian Broadcasting Corporation

Protection measures from Minister won't go far: JPP - ABC Kimberley WA - Australian Broadcasting Corporation:

Dr Steve Salisbury, from University of Queensland, says the research report the Environmental Protection Authority used was inadequate, as did the authors themselves since the fossil experts had too little time to assess the area.

Dr Salisbury, who showed ABC TV's Catalyst program the trackways, says some of the most signficant prints are within the precinct site and will be destroyed, while those 900 metres away will most likely be buried by sand.


  1. No doubt about it when the time comes for Burke to earn his money there will be more than a thousand eyes looking over his shoulder.

    But it is so interesting,how will Woodside settle the Pluto issue,the NW Shelf running out of gas soon,their overseas expansion ambitions,the curse of Browse at JPP,and Sunrise going no where?

    Lets take a wild guess at how much all that would cost.Pick any number in billions between 100 and 200.The oil price isn't that flash right now,price pressure on gas is down,Pluto is going OK for now,what will their profit be?Somewhere between $1 and $2 billion?

    With only the one train at Pluto any downtime could be very expensive,especially if they have to buy gas from elsewhere to fill the gap.

    It is,or so it seems,balanced on a knife edge.

    They should take some time to settle down what they have now.Expand into a project with high returns.Gear up from there.

    Browse at JPP just doesn't fit in anywhere.
    Shares in a floater or two - yes.Slim chance of finding enough gas to keep NWS going - start planning a pipeline.

    Browse at JPP would take up so much "space",hard to see them doing much else for a long time.

    If Burke does insist on a quality assessment of the project,and he has to really,then more studies would give Woodside the extra time they need to get going on another path.By then Barnett should be gone and clearer heads should prevail.

    Until then Woodside are stuck in a truly horrible place and so are we.

    There's a hell of a lot going to happen in the next 6 months and that's for sure.


    Supply, pricing uncertainty cloud LNG industry

    (This is a long article but here are a few excerpts)

    Larry Persily

    Federal Coordinator

    Release Date:
    October 26, 2012
    The speed — and uncertainty — of changes in global LNG supply, demand and pricing are weighing on buyers and sellers, said speakers at an international gas conference in London.

    "There is no industry that is as volatile and cyclical as the LNG business — maybe pig farmers," was how Philip Olivier, president of Paris-based GDF Suez Global LNG, put it at the Gastech 2012 conference held Oct. 8-10.

    "We find ourselves in very uncertain times as an industry," said Andrew Walker, vice president for global LNG at U.K.-based BG Group.
    LNG buyers made clear at the conference that they want lower prices for the fuel. Producers were clear they couldn't go too low. And many speakers made clear that nothing is clear about future LNG pricing.

    "I suggest North American and European prices will have to increase" to a level that will encourage exploration and development of new gas supplies, said Noel Tomnay, head of global gas research at U.K.-based energy consultants Wood Mackenzie. At the other end, high prices in Asia likely will drop as new LNG suppliers compete for customers, Tomnay said.

    But regardless of what buyers may want, there is no cheap natural gas left in the world, said Fereidun Fesharaki, chairman of FACTS Global Energy, a Singapore-based international consulting firm. New LNG projects generally need to receive around $12 per million Btu for their output, he said.

    Tomnay said it's a struggle to find new Australian LNG export projects that can break even at less than $11. Some, he added, need to sell their output at $14. That's about $1 higher than this month's spot market price in Asia.

    Meanwhile, some Asia buyers are signing shorter-term contracts as they wait for new supplies later this decade from Australia, Papua New Guinea, Africa and possibly Russia, Canada and the United States, Fesharaki added. They are betting a supply surplus will drive down prices in a few years, he said.

    They could win that bet. LNG supply will exceed Asian demand though 2025, according to forecasts from Japan's Institute of Energy Economics, said Kunio Nohata, senior general manager at the gas resources department of Tokyo Gas. And that doesn't count proposed export projects waiting final investment decisions by corporate boards.

    Though buyers and sellers are haggling over pricing, particularly in Asia where buyers want to break the LNG link to oil prices, long-term deals are still the norm for LNG projects to justify the huge upfront capital cost of liquefaction plants. "Oil is like dating, gas is like getting married," Fesharaki said of the difference between the oil and LNG markets
    "The oil-linked pricing mechanism is no longer rational," said Shigeru Muraki, executive vice president of Tokyo Gas, Japan's largest gas utility. The company is discussing with potential suppliers a combination of Henry Hub and oil-linked pricing, Muraki said, adding that Japan should take the lead in creating a pricing mechanism for LNG sold in Asia.

    A new pricing formula, removed or at least cushioned from high global oil prices, is especially important for China and India, Muraki said, because expensive LNG strains their government subsidies of gas prices to consumers. "That kind of market cannot continue."

    1. cont***

      But there is a limit to how much LNG suppliers can drop their price, said Wood Mac's Tomnay. Developers must cover their heavy upfront costs, which can run tens of billions of dollars for the most expensive projects. Whereas the long-term contract price for 1 million Btu of LNG — roughly 1,000 cubic feet of gas — had been around 17 percent of the cost of a barrel of crude oil, it has softened in recent years to 14 percent, Tomnay said. "You can only go so far because of the high cost of these projects."
      Environmental controversies over fracking and shale drilling were cited as a good example of needing a "social license" to develop a project. "A social license is earned and it's intangible," said Julie Nelson, director of public and governmental affairs at BG Group. "It's simply not good enough to have all of your permits in place. ... A company must go above and beyond" to earn the public's credibility and trust.

      "You have to seek out the people who don't want you and explain it to them," said Darron Granger, senior vice president for engineering and construction at Cheniere Energy, developer of the first LNG export plant in the Lower 48 states
      A gas pipeline from Russia is another option under consideration, Muraki said. A supply of pipeline gas to Japan "is the other issue that could change the pricing" of LNG. A pipeline, however, faces political hurdles, in addition to the technological challenge of crossing 500 miles of water almost 2 miles deep at its low point.

      Several speakers said China will be a bigger market driver than Japan in the years ahead.

      If China sees LNG at $15, "they'll say, fine, let's develop (our) shale," said Stern, of the Oxford Institute. The U.S. Energy Information Administration estimates China's shale gas reserves could top those of the United States, though exploration and development is in its infancy.

      Ernst & Young's Brogan also warned that pipeline gas could displace LNG in China. "Don't be surprised if some markets lose out to indigenous production and piped gas."

      China already is turning to pipeline gas in greater quantities. This year China has imported more pipeline gas than LNG, the first time that has happened.

      China consumed about 4.6 trillion cubic feet of gas in 2011, producing about 3.6 tcf from its own fields and importing the rest — with a slight advantage for LNG — said Jennifer Coolidge, executive director of CMX Caspian and Gulf Consultants, based in Cyprus. And although she expects the gap between consumption and domestic production could grow to several trillion cubic feet a year by 2020, Coolidge said China already has made plans to take more pipeline gas from Turkmenistan in the near term, adding Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan gas longer term.

      Two west-to-east pipelines already move gas from Central Asia into China, with a third starting construction this fall.

      That pipeline gas has been less expensive than LNG this year.

      The high cost of LNG was a recurring theme among speakers. China, with India, relies on government subsidies to hold down the cost of gas to consumers and may try to boost domestic production or even build coal-to-gas conversion plants if LNG is too expensive, said Anna Howells, head of Asia energy for Herbert Smith Freehills, the world's third largest law firm by number of attorneys.
      In addition to North America, conference speakers talked of other potential new LNG supplies. Several mentioned the tens of trillions of cubic feet of gas discovered offshore Tanzania and Mozambique in East Africa. But just as many talked about the hurdles in developing those projects.

    2. cont***

      Qatar is the world's leader in LNG production capacity at 10 bcf a day. The nation's moratorium on new projects expires in 2014, noted Khalid Sultan R. Al Kuwari, marketing and shipping executive at Qatar's RasGas, though he did not speculate whether the government would decide to undertake new projects.
      Coming up fast on Qatari gas production is Australia, which is poised to overtake the Mideast nation as the world's largest LNG supplier before the end of the decade, with more than $170 billion in liquefaction projects under development.

      Those are costly projects, especially the three projects that will source their gas from coal-seam plays, Howells said. The coal-seam gas is low on valuable liquids and condensates, putting more of a burden on getting a strong price for the methane.

      Project delays, labor shortages and cost overruns are making it tough on new projects in Australia, said William Breeze, a colleague of Howells at Herbert Smith Freehills. "The window of opportunity for Australia projects may be closing."
      "The sheer size of projects ... the amount that has to be financed increases every year," said Stephen Craen, an energy projects banker at Societe Generale. A Papua New Guinea project under construction (led by ExxonMobil) set the world record for LNG project financing at $13 billion, he said. The Ichthys project in Australia will set a new record at $20 billion in debt financing for the $34 billion development, he added. Japanese oil company Inpex and France's Total are developing Ichthys.
      Pre-2009, commercial banks covered about half the debt, Baker said, but since the global financial crisis banks are down to one-quarter of the debt, with government export-import banks helping to take up the slack. Looking ahead, government export credit agencies will be increasingly important, and marginal projects will have a harder time getting financing unless developers put up more equity, Baker said.

      The U.S. Export-Import Bank this year agreed to help finance an LNG project in Australia that includes ConocoPhillips as a partner.
      Almost 78 percent of oil and gas megaprojects since 2000 "have exhibited poor cost and/or schedule performance," Harrison said. Deep-water construction, environmental restrictions, political interference and remote locations all contribute to the problem, he said. The answers are robust front-end engineering, a realistic project development strategy and identifying risks.
      After the first two trains are completed, Cheniere plans to construct two more trains, bringing total capacity to more than 2 billion cubic feet a day, ranking it among the world's largest liquefaction plants. The capacity of all four trains is fully subscribed under 20-year contracts, with customers paying a fixed charge for liquefaction and whatever the market price is for gas. Cheniere takes no commodity price risk — it falls entirely on the plant's customers. This is a new LNG pricing approach that global buyers and sellers are watching keenly.

      Cheniere also has applied for federal approval for an LNG export project at Corpus Christi, Texas. Construction could start in 2014, pending federal approval and a corporate go-ahead, Granger said, adding, "Cheniere could not be happier."


  3. So that says it all.

    There is no place for gas at JPP because just like cheaper gas has helped kickstart the US economy so China,India,Japan,Korea need cheaper gas for them to compete,and never ending government subsidies are not the way to go.In fact the US is now expecting it's cheaper gas to win back a good slice of the jobs that have gone overseas in recent times.

    (Australia also must be very careful here as cheaper gas is becoming an essential part of any manufacturing revival)

    A return to coal because of high gas prices is not the way to go either,especially after Hurricane Sandy!

    So cheaper gas is the way of the future.
    That means no more Mega expensive plants like JPP.

    Barnett's great scheme,and their like,are now as extinct as the dinosaurs that left their tracks in the mud of prehistoric Walmadany.

    All we need now is for the likes of Barnett and his ilk to become extinct.Thereby creating a better world for all of us,and some kind of half decent future for those that will come after us.

    1. It is worth remembering that until recently the US was a major IMPORTER of LNG.
      They had dozens of import,regasification,terminals.
      They were building dozens more - all of which have been cancelled because of the CSG revolution.

      It is so cheap for them to build export,liquification,plants because all they have to do is build the trains.
      They use the existing storage tanks,wharfs,and just reverse the pipeline flows.

      That is how Cheniere have turned their fortunes around.

    2. Friday, 2 November 2012

      LNG transportation specialist specialist Golar has made the move into floating production, announcing a deal to build its first FLNG vessel with an eye on exploiting cheap African gas.

      Thursday, 1 November 2012

      IN WHAT may be a sign of the times, a heavily gas-reliant Japan is courting non-traditional gas suppliers as it fumbles its way out of an impending energy crisis.


      A warning for all in the Fitzroy Valley who may be exposed to fraccing:

      (worries about open pits used to store frac water and chemicals - Hurricane Sandy)

      Residents living in the Marcellus Shale region of Pennsylvania are breathing a cautious sigh of relief in the wake of superstorm Sandy, but remain concerned that increasingly frequent and severe storms expected with climate change could cause fracking-related problems in the future.

      French recalled the flooding in September 2011 caused by Tropical Storm Lee, and remains suspicious that the water flushed toxic chemicals from fracking waste into the soil and groundwater near her home. She said she thinks the toxic water triggered her daughter's subsequent severe illness as well as her own rashes, but she cannot draw a definitive link.

      Natural gas production is expanding across the country, particularly along a 600-mile rock formation called the Marcellus Shale, which stretches from West Virginia to western New York. When wastewater returns to the surface during fracking -- the process of releasing gas from bedrock -- the resulting mix contains toxic chemicals used in pressurized fracking fluid, as well as contaminants picked up from deep in the earth, such as brine and radioactive materials. The wastewater is generally stored in lined open-air pits, also known as flowback impoundments, and is one of the ways people like French could get sick, according to some environmental experts and advocates.

      "Any time you have an open wastewater pit, you're vulnerable," said Rob Jackson, a biologist at Duke University, recalling how Hurricane Floyd of 1999 flooded hog waste lagoons, devastating rivers with raw sewage.

      He said he sees the same flood danger with fracking wastewater, but suggested that the consequences could be more severe. "There's a lot of risk with fracking ponds. You have organic chemicals, carcinogens, potential radioactivity, metals like arsenic and salts," Jackson said.

      ...also cited previous incidences of stormwater-related contamination at natural gas operations: a discharge of a substance used to lift water and drill cuttings to the surface during a 2009 drill in Lycoming Co., Pa., and several overflowing wastewater pits in Colorado in 2007.

      Wes Gillingham of Catskill Mountainkeeper, a grassroots advocacy group, added that it's not only the wastewater pits that could pose problems during extreme weather events.

      "Tanks can move or spill," he said. "Trucks can be parked in the wrong place."

      He added that the storm-related contamination risks are part of a much larger environmental issue.