Offshore appraisal well

The CarbonNet Project commenced drilling an offshore appraisal well (OAW) in early December 2019 at the Pelican site in Bass Strait.

The aim of the drilling program is to confirm that identified rock structures deep under the seabed can permanently store carbon dioxide, thereby validating previous data collected by the CarbonNet project.

The Environment Plan for this activity was approved by the regulator, National Offshore Petroleum Safety and Environmental Management Authority (NOPSEMA), in April 2019. To view the Environment Plan Summary, visit NOPSEMA.

The CarbonNet project has reached an important milestone with our drilling rig, the Noble Tom Prosser, having arrived in Melbourne's Port Phillip Bay on 27 November onboard the OHT Osprey (heavy lift vessel).

Our video shows the drilling rig being 'floated off' from the Osprey, prior to being  towed out of the Bay towards its final destination - CarbonNet's Pelican site in Bass Strait (arrived 1 December).


The Noble Tom Prosser, a large jack-up rig, is positioned approximately eight kilometres offshore from the Ninety Mile Beach. The rig will drill to a depth of about 1.5km below the seabed. Drilling operations are expected to take between 45 and 60 days to complete.

A 500m radius safety exclusion zone is in place around the drilling rig for the duration of operations.

The activity is being managed by AGR (Australia) Pty Ltd as the Drilling Management Contractor for CarbonNet.

Diagram of a typical offshore jack-up drilling rig. The total depth of the appraisal well is 1,500 metres.


The OAW location is the Pelican site, approximately eight kilometres offshore from the Ninety Mile Beach as shown on the map below. The rig will be visible from the shoreline.

CarbonNet's Offshore Appraisal Well near Golden Beach and Paradise Beach, approximately 8 km offshore in Commonwealth waters


Drilling is expected to take between 45 and 60 days to complete.

More information

If you would like more information, please call the CarbonNet Drilling line on 1800 312 966.

Contact us

If you have any feedback or questions about the geotechnical and geophysical investigations please contact AGR (Australia) Pty Ltd.

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Page last updated: 11 Dec 2019