(EneryAsia, July 29 2011, Friday) — A consortium led by US major Chevron Corporation have secured agreements to supply liquefied natural gas (LNG) from its Wheatstone natural gas project in Australia to Japan’s Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO).

Chevron said that its Australian subsidiaries, together with US-based Apache Energy and Kuwait’s Kufpec will deliver up to 3.1 million tons a year (mt/y) of LNG to TEPCO for
a period of up to 20 years.

The Japanese utility, which has lost the use of its giant Fukushima 1 nuclear power complex in north-eastern Japan following the March 11 earthquake, is also in discussions with Chevron to purchase an equity share in the titles covering the

Wheatstone fields and a percentage of Chevron’s share of the Wheatstone downstream processing facilities.

John Gass, president for Chevron Gas and Midstream, said:

“TEPCO is one of the world’s leading LNG customers. Its support for Chevron’s Wheatstone Project reinforces the strength of the relationship between the two companies that has been built up over many years.”

Roy Krzywosinski, managing director of Chevron Australia, said the Wheatstone project had completed the front-end engineering and design phase and Chevron remains on track to make a final investment decision later in the year.

He said: “The TEPCO agreements and other LNG agreements we are finalising give Wheatstone great momentum. The Ashburton North site earmarked for the LNG processing plant is ideally located to unlock the significant gas resources in the western Carnarvon basin.”

The Chevron-operated project will become one of Australia’s largest resource projects. Located at Ashburton North, 12 km west of Onslow in Western Australia state, the foundation phase of the project will consist of two liquefied natural gas trains with a combined capacity of 8.9 mt/y and a domestic gas plant.