Once we find gas, we plan the safest way to extract it so we can then develop and deliver it to our customers. 

Our exploration and production portfolio includes the Bowen and Surat basins in Central Australia, as well as interests in the Browse Basin in Western Australia and the Beetaloo Basin in the Northern Territory. 

Current projects

Heytesbury Wells decommissioning

How natural gas is extracted


Once we’ve secured approvals from land owners, government and other stakeholders, we explore below the land and ocean beds for natural gas.


If we find gas, our engineers and analysts work out how to extract it. 


If feasible, we begin drilling wells to extract the gas. 

Gas processing

We process the extracted gas to remove unnecessary elements like water.

Gas pipelines

A network of pipelines distribute gas daily to residential and business customers.

Gas-powered stations

Some of the gas is sent to our gas-powered stations to make electricity.

Gas production begins

Once we explore areas and find that natural gas is viable to produce, we focus on production of that source to supply to our customers.

We operate coal seam gas (CSG) production plants as part of Australia Pacific LNG in Queensland. This supplies close to 30% of domestic east coast gas demand. 

Current projects

condabri aerial tall

Surat and Bowen basins in Queensland

Origin is the upstream operator for Australia Pacific LNG and is responsible for the development of its CSG fields in the Surat and Bowen basins and the main transmission pipeline that transports the gas to the LNG facility on Curtis Island near Gladstone.

We also have a number of CSG interests in southwest and central Queensland including the Galilee Basin and Denison Trough in the Bowen Basin. 

lng plant tall

Australia Pacific LNG

The $24.7 billion Australia Pacific LNG project commenced production in late 2015, with the first cargo of liquefied natural gas (LNG) shipped on Saturday, 9 January 2016.

The project converts coal seam gas (CSG) to LNG for export to Asia - delivering a cleaner, greener sustainable energy source.  

The project has a life span of at least 30 years and is a joint venture between Origin (37.5%), ConocoPhillips (37.5%) and Sinopec (25%).


photo tall origin ironbark project gas cold seam

Ironbark project

Ironbark is a wholly Origin-owned project. It's located in the Surat Basin, and is in the exploration and appraisal stage. This means that the economic and business potential of the proposed development is being evaluated.

As part of this stage, Origin operates a small number of pilot, appraisal and monitoring wells.

The project aims to produce gas into a growing market in Australia, and if constructed it will bring employment, skills development and business opportunities to the Tara region. 

photo tall origin amungee nw1h gas exploration beetaloo basin

Other basins

We have offshore exploration interests in the Browse Basin in Western Australia and onshore exploration interests in the Beetaloo Basin in the Northern Territory. 

Origin Energy operates three exploration permits in the Beetaloo Basin. Together with project partner Falcon Oil & Gas, we are evaluating the potential of Proterozoic rocks of the Velkerri and Kyalla formations.

Exploration is on hold due to a moratorium in the Northern Territory. 

Heytesbury Wells

We’re closing down the Heytesbury Wells  

As at October 2018

Origin owns seven onshore gas wells in the Otway region that are connected by a pipeline network. We call the wells and pipeline network ‘Heytesbury’.

Heytesbury has played a crucial part in helping us to supply natural gas to thousands of Victorian homes and businesses, but it’s now time for us to shut it down. The Heytesbury Wells and pipeline network are the last gas assets owned by Origin in western Victoria.

heytesbury wells closure

The seven wells and connecting pipelines are found near Port Campbell on private land in the Otway region.

The onshore natural gas reservoir accessed by these wells is no longer producing gas.

As the wells aren’t being used, we’re shutting them down and rehabilitating the well sites as well as the land around them.

Gas companies in Australia are required by law to shut down any infrastructure once it’s reached the end of its service life.

We’re working hard to make sure the closure has the smallest possible impact on the local community although you may notice more Origin trucks and workers around the area as we conduct this work.

We plan to start the decommissioning of the Heytesbury Wells and pipeline network in late 2018.

We expect to finish mid 2019.

We’ll work with each landowner on the exact timing of the decommissioning of each well site.

The Heytesbury pipeline network is buried up to two metres underground, and there’s no gas running through them.

We’re leaving the pipeline network in place to reduce the environmental disturbance to the land that would by caused by removing them – this is a common, safe and acceptable practice in the pipeline industry.

At Origin, we’re serious about doing everything we can to leave the environment as we found it and to do this in the safest way possible. They’re two of our key priorities across our business. We’ve made sure the process not only meets the regulatory requirements, but we’ve also had input from the local landowners too. 

The process can be quite detailed but as an overview, we'll:

illustration square heytsbury wells close process 01

1. Move a service rig over the existing well
and remove any completion equipment.

illustration square heytsbury wells close process 02

2. Pump water
into the well to clear excess hydrocarbons. The water will push any hydrocarbons back into the reservoir and clear the well.

illustration square heytsbury wells close process 03

3. Seal and secure
the well by filling it with cement. This process will be completed in stages and pressure tests will be conducted to ensure the reservoir is properly secured.

illustration square heytsbury wells close process 04

4. Cut and secure
the well head approximately 2m below ground level. Once the well is secured, remove the well-head infrastructure in preparation for rehabilitation.

illustration square heytsbury wells close process 05

5. Work closely with landholders
to determine their preferred outcome for the site. The rehabilitation process may take more than 12 months to complete and will be completed in agreement and consultation with the landholder.

If you have any questions about the closure of the Heytesbury wells, just give us a call.

Contact us

We welcome enquiries from the community regarding Origin’s natural gas production assets.

phone1800 526 369

(for Australia Pacific LNG)

phone1800 052 630

(for the Beetaloo Project)


  1. 11%: Origin Energy’s 2013 Annual Report states total volume of 127 PJ of gas sold.
  2. The Australian Energy Regulator’s State of the energy market 2013 (p. 90) reports annual consumption of 1,102 PJ.