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Woodside approves investment in $7.2B Trion development in deepwater Gulf of Mexico; first oil in 2028

Australia-based Woodside Energy has made a final investment decision to develop the large, high-quality Trion resource in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico. First oil is targeted for 2028.

Trion is located in a water depth of 2,500 meters, approximately 180 km off the Mexican coastline and 30 km south of the Mexico/US maritime border. Trion was discovered in 2012 by PEMEX. BHP Petroleum acquired an interest in 2017 which subsequently became part of Woodside’s portfolio in 2022. Trion is a greenfield development that would represent the first oil production from Mexico’s deepwater.

The development is subject to joint venture approval and regulatory approval of the field development plan (FDP), expected in the fourth quarter of 2023. Woodside is operator with a 60% participating interest and PEMEX Exploración y Producción (PEMEX) holds the remaining 40%.

The forecast total capital expenditure is US$7.2 billion (US$4.8 billion Woodside share including capital carry of PEMEX of approximately US$460 million) with the development expected to deliver strong returns to Woodside shareholders as well as economic and social benefits to Mexico.

The investment is expected to deliver an internal rate of return (IRR) greater than 16% with a payback period of less than four years. The forecast IRR excluding the capital carry is greater than 19%.

The project will target the development of an estimated 479 MMboe of Best Estimate (2C) Contingent Resource (100%) of oil and gas (287 MMboe 2C Contingent Resources, Woodside net economic interest). The subsurface has been extensively appraised, with six well penetrations undertaken across the field, informing Woodside’s understanding of this large, high-quality conventional resource.

The resource will be developed through a floating production unit (FPU) with an oil production capacity of 100,000 barrels per day. The FPU will be connected to a floating storage and offloading (FSO) vessel with a capacity of 950,000 barrels of oil.

Woodside believes that Trion is resilient in a decarbonizing world, because of several factors including its forecast short payback period of less than four years, the fact that two-thirds of the resource is expected to be produced within 10 years from start- up, portfolio free cash flow resilience in the IEA NZE scenario and it having an expected all-in breakeven less than US$50/bbl.

Trion is expected to have a carbon intensity of 11.8 kgCO2-e/boe over the life of the field, below the global deepwater oil average of 15 kgCO2-e/boe and global oil average of 27 kgCO2-e/boe averaged over the period 2022 to 2032.


Development of Trion, which is subject to joint venture and regulatory approval of the FDP, will include the installation of an FPU, an FSO, and 18 wells (nine producers, seven water injectors and two gas injectors) drilled in the initial phase, with a total of 24 wells drilled over the life of the Trion project. The forecast total capital expenditure of US$7.2 billion includes all 24 wells. Gas that is not reinjected or used on the FPU will be shipped to the Mexican markets.

The Trion Asociación (Trion Joint Venture) comprises Woodside Petróleo Operaciones de México, S. de R.L. de C.V. (60%, operator) and PEMEX Exploración y Producción (40%).



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