The Judith gas field is an offshore gas and condensate field development located in the permit Vic/P47 in Gippsland Basin, off the coast of eastern Victoria, Australia. Empero Energy holds 100% exploration and development interest in the permit.

Empero Energy announced the renewal of the permit for a period of five years in February 2018. It also announced in the same month an exploration drilling programme in the Judith North area which is expected to be completed by early 2021. The Vic/P47 permit hosts the Judith as well as the Moby gas discoveries.

A dynamic reservoir model along with simulation well tests was concluded in November 2018. It predicted up to 80 million cubic feet (Mcf) per day of steady gas production from five vertical wells over a period of 20 years.

An independent resource statement for the Judith gas field was completed in July 2019, while the agreement for the pre-front end engineering and design (Pre-FEED) of the project was signed in May 2020. The Pre-FEED works are expected to be started in July 2020 and completed by the end of the year.

Judith gas field location and discovery

The Judith gas field is located in the Vic/P47 permit of Australia’s Gippsland Basin, approximately 200km east of Melbourne. The permit covers an area of approximately 202km2 and the Judith field located on the southern edge of the permit at water depths ranging from 20m to 85m.

The Judith gas field was discovered by Shell by drilling the Judith-1 exploration well in 1989, while Bass Strait Oil drilled the Moby-1 discovery well in 2004.

Judith field reservoir and resources

The Judith gas and condensate reservoir is subdivided into four main units of Gas Sands.  Lacustrine shales separate each of these sandstone units with a gross thickness of 543.3m.

The reservoir has a modest gas column due to the abundant presence of argillaceous clasts in lithic sandstones with reduced permeability. The net thickness of each of the sandstone reservoirs is 234m with a net gas pay of approximately 162m.

As per the independent resource statement published in July 2019, the Judith gas field is estimated to hold 150 billion cubic feet (Bcf ) of gas and 2.2 million barrels of condensate as 2C contingent resources and up to 1.26 trillion cubic feet (Tcf) of P50 unrisked prospective gas resources.

Judith gas field development plan

The Judith gas field development plan calls for a production capacity of 80Mcf of gas a day over an estimated project life of 25 years.

The design includes an onshore gas processing plant adjacent to and in parallel with the existing Orbost gas processing plant which is owned and operated by APA Group, an Australian energy infrastructure company.

The gas produced at the Judith gas field will be brought onshore through a 40km-long subsea pipeline.

The project also involves a gas export pipeline connecting the Eastern Gas Pipeline (EGP) located to the north of the Orbost gas plant. The 797km-long Eastern Gas Pipeline operates across Victoria and New South Wales (NSW).

Contractors involved

Empero Energy signed a binding agreement with APA for the Pre-FEED study of the Judith gas field development project in May 2020. The agreement followed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed between the two parties in October 2019.

The scope of the Pre-FEED study includes the gas processing plant as well as the subsea and export pipelines planned for the project.

3D-Geo, an Australian based petroleum consultant, provided the independent resource estimates for the project in July 2019.