Petroleum has been a major driver in Victoria's wealth. The large gas deposits discovered in the offshore Gippsland Basin, in 1965, have delivered clean and cheap energy to Victoria for over 40 years. In the 2005/2006 fiscal year, the average gas production was over 700 million cubic feet per day (M cuft/d) and represented 18% of the total national gas sales. Gas demand has grown at 2% per annum over the last decade and is highly seasonal, with an average demand of 700 M cuft/d in wintertime and about 500 M cuft/d in summertime.
In 1985, oil production from the offshore Gippsland Basin peaked to an annual average of 450,000 barrels per day (bbls/d). In the fiscal year 2005/2006, the average daily oil production declined to 83,000 bbls/d. Despite the decline, this production still represents almost 19.5% of the crude oil production in Australia.
Exploration activity has branched out into the offshore Otway Basin and resulted in the discovery of La Bella, Minerva, Geographe, Casino and Henry Gas Fields as well as Thylacine gas discovery in offshore Tasmanian water. In the 2005/2006 fiscal year, the average gas production in offshore Otway Basin was about 200 M cuft/d, while in the onshore region, near Port Campbell, smaller gas discoveries were made and being produced.
To learn more about the State's petroleum exploration history, see the History of Petroleum Exploration in Victoria webpage.
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Explore Victoria Online - GeoVic
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