Woodside Petroleum will go ahead with the A$1.2bn ($1bn) Persephone gas project, offshore north-west Australia, after North West Shelf (NWS) participants approved the development.

Woodside Energy operates and owns a 16.67% stake in the project, which is the third major gas development for the NWS in the last six years.

"The project will feature a two-well, 7km subsea tieback from the Persephone field to the existing North Rankin complex."

Other project stakeholders include BHP Billiton Petroleum (North West Shelf), BP Developments Australia, Chevron Australia, Japan Australia LNG and Shell Development (Australia).

The project, which is expected to start operations in early 2018, will feature a two-well, 7km subsea tieback from the Persephone field to the existing North Rankin complex.

The two proposed wells will be drilled from a common drill centre using a semi-submersible drill rig.

The proposed subsea system features a manifold at the drill centre location, with two slots to tie-in the wells.

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By GlobalData

Woodside CEO Peter Coleman said the Persephone project will leverage Woodside’s core capabilities to unlock undeveloped resources and help maintain offshore supply to the Karratha gas plant.

"The North West Shelf project celebrated 30 years of domestic gas production and 25 years of liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports earlier this year, and the approval of Persephone is the next step in continuing this success story."

The Persephone gas field is situated in offshore petroleum production licence WA-1-L, located 135km, north-west of Karratha, Western Australia, in water a depth of about 126m.

The field was discovered in 2006 by the exploration well Persephone-1, about 8km north-east of the NWS project’s North Rankin complex.