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    Comet Ridge Wins Two New Queensland Blocks


The blocks are close to the company's existing assets.

by: Shardul Sharma

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Comet Ridge Wins Two New Queensland Blocks

Australian explorer Comet Ridge has been selected by the Queensland government as preferred tenderer for two additional gas blocks in central Queensland, it said on September 21 in a statement.

The two blocks are immediately to the east of Comet Ridge’s Mahalo North project and also adjoining the Mahalo gas project. Comet Ridge will be operator of both blocks on a 100% equity basis.

“These new blocks in conjunction with Mahalo North (ATP 2048) provide a substantial area for gas development, as an extension of the main gas fairway at the advanced Mahalo gas project,” Comet Ridge said.

The first block, which will be called Mahalo East, covers an area of 97 km2 and is located immediately east of Mahalo North in the same gas fairway. The second block, which will be called Mahalo Far East, covers an area of 338 km2 and is located slightly further east again. “This block is interpreted to contain the north-eastern extent of the high-quality gas fairway and to have a very large gas in place volume, providing significant potential upside within the Mahalo gas hub,” Comet said.

Comet Ridge managing director Tor McCaul said both blocks significantly increase the company’s 100% footprint in the Mahalo gas hub. He said these new blocks, along with Mahalo North, provide Comet Ridge with a very large area to appraise and develop.

When combined with the Mahalo gas project, all three of these 100% awarded blocks provide Comet Ridge with significant additional equity gas and added scale to improve economic outcomes. McCaul said the most efficient way to develop the area would be with a common pipeline and gas plant, potentially built by a third-party infrastructure provider, so that scale economies would provide gas at a low unit cost.

The company will now seek environmental and native title approvals for an authority to prospect (ATP) to be awarded for each block, in similar fashion to Mahalo North. After winning preferred tenderer status in late 2019, Mahalo North was formally awarded as ATP 2048 in April this year.