Friday, March 8, 2013

Woodside sees growing merits of CNG over LNG | News | Business Spectator

Woodside sees growing merits of CNG over LNG | News | Business Spectator:
Woodside chief executive Peter Coleman said CNG technology is now cost competitive with LNG for markets within 2,000 kilometres of the gas field.

“CNG has particular attraction to us in areas where markets are close, and could be a potential for us to use in the Mediterranean,” Mr Coleman told The Australian. “We're looking at it off the west coast of Australia too – there are some deepwater assets that are a long way from current infrastructure we may be able to use CNG for, and it also opens up some of the smaller fields around Asia.”


  1. Public protests put brakes on drilling plans

    Public protests against coal seam gas have had a powerful delaying effect on the industry and forced the government to extend lapsed drilling licences in many areas of NSW, government documents show.

    The extensions were granted to give more time to companies, including Metgasco and Santos, which complained they had been blocked from entering farms and delayed by protesters.

    The documents, obtained under freedom-of-information laws by anti-coal seam gas group Lock The Gate, describe a litany of delays plaguing the industry.

    Government officials reviewing Metgasco's licence application for drilling in the Casino district in northern NSW, wrote in May that the company ''had experienced severe delays due to opposition, blockade and access problems which renders a bigger work program rather meaningless if they cannot fulfil them''.


    The companies sought waivers of section 30 of the Petroleum (Onshore) Act, which requires licence holders to relinquish at least 25 per cent of their permit area upon renewal - a provision meant to expedite drilling and minimise uncertainty for landowners.

    ''Where the community is so strongly opposed to CSG that they've impeded exploration, the government shouldn't be waiving requirements for the company to reduce their licence area,'' Lock The Gate spokeswoman Carmel Flint said.


    Clash over onshore gas future

    Two of WA's resources titans are at odds over the prospects of the onshore gas industry amid claims by one that it is destined to be a marginal player in the State's energy landscape.

    Michael Chaney, the chairman of oil and gas giant Woodside and one of the State's best known business leaders, has said onshore oil and gas would not be a "game-changer".

    Veteran Mines and Petroleum Minister Norman Moore, a fervent backer of the industry, dismissed the suggestion, saying unconventional gas would be crucial to WA's energy security.

    The disagreement between the two resources heavyweights came ahead of a conference in Perth today to discuss the industry in WA and how it will influence the State's energy future.

    Onshore oil and gas is emerging in WA but has courted controversy here and elsewhere because it uses a gas exploration technique known as hydraulic fracturing - or "fracking".

    Although the sector disputes the claims, fracking has been linked to contaminated groundwater and seismic instability and has been banned or restricted in several countries and Australian States.

    It has also drawn criticism from farmers, who say it jeopardises their water supplies and land rights.

    Asked whether he thought it would become a major industry in WA, Mr Chaney said: "I doubt it.

    "There may be some in the Canning Basin and there may be small discoveries made in the Perth Basin and onshore in the Carnarvon Basin but they are unlikely to be game-changers."

    Mr Moore, who will retire from State politics after the election, said he disagreed and insisted fracking held the key to unlocking gas supplies that could last hundreds of years.

    "I'm very bullish about this and I hope it comes off," Mr Moore said.

    "But I should make the point that it's very much in the infancy stage.

    "There's a lot of this happening in the United States but we're a long way behind them - we don't have any drilling rigs in WA.
    "But it has got a future, which I think will really start to assert itself in five to 10 years time."


    1. Chaney must be in a very strange place indeed.There are rumours he is loosing his grip and is due to finish up at NAB.

      Don Voelte said the same thing about fracking a few years back and look where we are now.

      Ironically the term for this sort of outlook is Dinosaurs.

  2. Some recent comments by Woodside on LNG/CNG.
    But like Chaney's comments above there is a sense that Coleman is stuck in a similar timewarp,a denial of the true state of play and how Australia will remain almost untouched by a rapidly changing world.

    "WOODSIDE Petroleum chief Peter Coleman says Asian LNG demand is strong enough to support Australian projects, despite a raft of potential competitors in the US and East Africa, where he says similar cost challenges will be present."

    (And yet the KBR chief came out again last week and said," the US it costs us $50 an hour all up to hire a tradesman.The same worker in Australia costs us $114 an hour.Mind you KBR were paying workers in Iraq ("third country" nationals) as little as 50 cents an hour.)


    Mr Coleman said he expected US LNG exports of between 40 million and 50 million tonnes a year by 2025, compared with more than 80 million tonnes from Australia, while East Africa had the potential to be a significant new supplier in the 2020s.

    (once again he gives the impression East African supply is a lot further away than where it is really - " the 2020's".)

    "These new developments will broaden global access to natural gas," he said. "At the same time, we are confident they will not fundamentally alter the LNG market dynamics in our region, which are underpinned by security of supply and long-term, oil-price-linked contracts."

    (for how long?)


    He said new projects in competitor regions would face similar cost pressures to those being felt in Australia, but conceded Australia was hit harder than most.

    "Higher costs leave us with less margin for error on project delivery and must be offset with premium performance in the execution phase," the Woodside chief said.


    Resources and Energy Minister Martin Ferguson said he was pleased to see Australia had become Japan's top supplier, but he remained concerned about project development costs.

    "The major challenge for Australia's broader natural gas industry is to deliver projects on time and on budget. This will be critical to us remaining internationally competitive, particularly in light of challenges from existing gas exporters and emerging sources of LNG supply, such as Russia, East Africa and the US," he said.

    Amid soaring trade deficits, Japan has vowed to break up the current oil-linked pricing system for the Asian market and replace it with a price linked to US domestic pricing, if it wins approval from the US to receive shale gas shipments.

    The US domestic price is hovering around $3.50 per million BTU.

    Japanese utilities say that they could liquefy and import this gas for a price 30 per cent cheaper than Australian gas.


    (I dont think they realise just how determined the Japanese and Indians are to get away from oil indexed to lower,fairer prices.It isn't Asia's job to support overpriced Australian projects.But it seems Coleman cannot get his head around the fact that now everyone has gas the price pressure must be down.)

  3. Here are a few details on the plans for saving money on modules at JPP.

    (from : Woodside turning to 'compressed gas' rather than LNG )


    "...Technology has been a growing theme at Woodside under Mr Coleman. He announced in May last year that as well as focusing on CNG, the division was studying ways to build bigger LNG plant modules overseas to reduce construction costs.

    These would limit the number of modules in an LNG plant, all constructed offshore, to five.

    The design of the Browse LNG plant being studied at James Price Point near Broome used some of this technology, and would need 14 pieces, Mr Coleman said.

    When Woodside finished its Pluto LNG plant it needed 81."



    1. 14 pieces.

      Through the dunes and onto the site.

      Were the plans for this plant for modules of this size or is there another surprise in store?

      And they have to get this mammoth barge right up to the RORO ramp so do the dredging plan details allow for barges of this size?

      Or more dredging required?

      More clearing of Monsoon Vine Thickets needed?

      How much of what we know,(or what the Feds and State have details of),is up to date and accurate?


    THE Barnett government has failed to act on 100 of the 107 recommendations contained in a 2009 report aimed at slashing red tape, which Treasurer Troy Buswell said at the time was an "incredibly costly" burden for the state's businesses and consumers.

    In response to questions from The Australian, Mr Buswell said the government had "implemented or progressed" seven of the 107 findings of the Red Tape Reduction Group in the three years since he released the scathing 200-page report."



    CHINA has accused Australia's top two mining companies, BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto, of manipulating the iron ore price by deliberately holding back supply in a bid to drive up global commodity markets and protect profits.

    The National Development and Reform Commission, China's main economic adviser, said the world's top three iron ore producers were sending out "fake" signals to support the commodity's price.

    In a strongly worded statement, the NDRC said the major producers were not supplying the market with their full production capacity.

    The NDRC, which is a major part of China's government, did not name the companies but the three largest global iron ore producers are BHP, Rio and Brazil's Vale.

    "The three major miners and some traders have delayed shipments and held back stocks to control supplies in order to send a fake market signal that there was a supply shortage," a statement said.

    . .

    Start of sidebar. Skip to end of sidebar.

    Recommended Coverage


    Iron filings show no impurities


    End of sidebar. Return to start of sidebar.
    "Some miners are also trying to push the price higher by buying at the spot market.

    "The pricing mechanism is not reasonable, too. The major overseas miners signed long-term contracts with Chinese steel mills stating a certain quantity of iron ore without stating a price."

    The NDRC statement, published on its website just one day after its major report was delivered at the National People's Congress in Beijing, is likely to damage relations between Australia's major miners and China.

    It is understood that Chinese diplomats have consistently lobbied Canberra over Australia's iron ore production capacity and prices.

    The NDRC statement accused the major iron ore producers of deliberately bidding the prices on the spot iron ore market higher.

    Benchmark iron ore prices fell to a low of of $US87 a tonne in early September after fears emerged the Chinese economy could face a hard landing. However, the commodity has since rebounded by at least 25 per cent to hit a 15-month high of $US152.50 a tonne earlier this year.

    "The miners also sell certain amounts of iron ore on the spot market, pushing up prices through bidding," the NDRC said. "The iron ore price was pushed higher during this opaque process and then composed on to the Platts index which meant that the base price for long-term contracts was based on a small amount of trading."

    BHP hit back at the Chinese claims and said its iron ore output was at full capacity, achieving a record between July and December last year.

    1. Oops sorry 'bout that..



  5. A "good ole story" from the "good ole boys" at Kellogg,Brown and Root.Just for oldy times sake.


    KBR is engineering and construction company based in Houston, Texas. At the time the 12 Nepali laborers were kidnapped and murdered, KBR was a subsidiary of Halliburton and the largest contractor for U.S military in Iraq. Current Vice President Dick Cheney was Halliburton's CEO from 1995-2000.

    Largest non-union construction in America, KBR has long standing relationship with the U.S military.

    ... In July 2005 the company's employee Jamie Leigh Jones alleged that she was gang raped by her colleagues in Iraq. But because of her employment contract she was not able to sue the company. During a Congressional hearing Jones said that KBR tried to brush the incident aside and denied her any medical or legal help.

    After Jones came out with her story, several other female employees of KBR in Iraq have alleged sexual harassment at the workplace.

    Allegations of human trafficking and financial mismanagement have also be made against KBR time and again. On December 1st UPI reported that laborers brought into Iraq by the company were paid just 50 cents and hour. Dahr Jamail at Truthout reported in March 2006, a former KBR employee saying that KBR was billing the U.S military around $50-$60 a day for a job, where the workers were paid about $5-$16 a day.

    Chicago Tribune's Cam Simpson carried out a lengthy investigation on the kidnapping and murder of the Nepali laborers. The report details these men's journey to violent death from poor villages in Nepal and ending in Iraqi desert.

    Jordanian agency Bisharat and Partners had arranged to send 65 Nepali laborers into Iraq in August of 2004-fully aware of the rising insurgency and volatile security situation in the country. The group also included the 12 laborers sent to Jordan by Moonlight to work in a hotel.

    Bisharat and Partners, would supply the workers to Daoud and Partners-subcontractor of American company KBR, which was then largest contractor for the United States military in Iraq.

    In Jordan

    Amman based Daoud and Partners is said to have deep political connections. 50% of the company's shares is owned by Bassem Awadallah-the head of Jordan's Royal Court. Although some dispute Awadallah's involvement in Daoud and Partners claiming that he has sold his shares to his brother.

    We tried to look at the ownership record of Daoud and Partners and Bisharat and Partners through the government's Companies Control Department but the search produced no results. The companies' records apparently have been taken off from the website.

    KBR and Daoud and Partners Deny Allegations

    KBR and Daoud and Partners have both denied allegations of human trafficking.

    Moonlight Nepal

    Moonlight employment agency based in Kathmandu, Nepal is where the journey of the 12 men began. The company had promised them good paying jobs in a luxury hotel in Amman, Jordan. Instead they were sent to Iraq.

    Cam Simpson's investigation for the Chicago Tribune concludes with an intriguing outcome. Prahlad Giri, the man behind Moonlight is in Kathmandu running another employment agency named "Sea Link Overseas". He lost his license to run Moonlight but is free to work as a general manager for Sea Link.

    U.S Government's Reaction

    After Chicago Tribune published Simpson's investigative report on the Nepali laborers killed in Iraql "Pipeline to Peril", the U.S government is taking steps to prevent incidents like this from happening in future.

    In early 2006, the State Department launched an investigation of alleged human trafficking of third country laborers-mostly Asians working for the U.S military in Iraq. The government is saying that contractors like KBR have to be held accountable for the action of their subcontractors.

    Defense industry, on the other hand, is resisting attempts by the government to stop human trafficking and abuse of laborers.


    Chicago Tribune