speech AOG energy 2023 keynote address

Mark Hatfield delivering speech at AOG 2023Mark Hatfield delivering speech at AOG 2023

Mark Hatfield - Managing Director, Chevron Australia  
AOG Energy 2023 Conference & Exhibition

15 March 2023


I’m very pleased to be here today as we open AOG Energy for another year.  

I too would like to begin by acknowledging the traditional owners of the land we meet on today, the Whadjuk people of the Noongar nation, and pay my respects to their Elders, past, present and emerging. 

I would also like to acknowledge the Deputy Premier, Roger Cook, and other invited guests here today.  

It’s great to see so many people coming together this week to connect, exchange ideas and collaborate. 

This is what our industry will continue to benefit from working together to meet the world’s increasing demand for energy, ensuring that it’s reliable, affordable and aligned to our lower carbon goals. 

During the past few years, the world has experienced energy markets both in surplus and in shortage. We’ve seen prices so low as to challenge the viability of energy companies and so high as to become a topic of everyday conversation, particularly on Australia’s east coast.   

At Chevron, our fundamental belief about energy investment is that we must balance economic prosperity, energy security and environmental protection. Affordable energy is vital for economies to flourish, reliable energy is essential for national security, and we all have a stake in a lower carbon future. 

We shouldn’t over-index on any one of these and I’m confident that we can meet the growing demand for energy while reducing net emissions. 

For Chevron’s part, we’re proud of our history and story of evolution in Australia. Through our various interests and investments, Chevron has been part of Australian energy since 1952 with our home here in Perth.  

Over the past 70 years, we’ve:  

  • discovered oil off the WA coast,  
  • joined with others to spearhead Australia’s ascendancy as a global LNG powerhouse 
  • invested more than A$80 billion with our joint venture partners in two of the world’s largest LNG plants, namely Gorgon and Wheatstone, and 
  • pioneered carbon capture and storage technology. 

In simple terms, we’ve changed as the world’s energy needs have changed.  

Demonstrating the vital role our industry plays, last year Chevron Australia delivered a record number of LNG cargoes to our international customers. 

Our projects also support WA’s energy and industrial sectors, having the capacity to produce around 50 percent of the state’s current domestic gas supply and we will continue to invest in our world class assets to support future energy security.  

On our Gorgon Stage Two project, we’re about to bring on 11 new wells to supply gas to our plant on Barrow Island. 

Beyond that, fabrication is now underway on our A$6 billion Jansz subsea compression project. 

The project recently achieved a significant milestone with the first steel cut on the subsea compression manifold station at Civmec’s Henderson facility. This work is an example of how we expect nearly A$2 billion of J-IC’s capital cost to be spent in WA supporting hundreds of jobs during the construction phase.  

You also might have noticed that our new office just down the road is complete. It’s great to see Chevron as part of the Perth city skyline in such a fantastic location as Elizabeth Quay. 

After 38 months of construction, 2.1 million work hours and A$200 million of direct Chevron investment, our new headquarters represents our long-term commitment and contribution to the WA community and Australia. 

Over the coming weeks, our Perth based workforce will move into the building, the first time we’ll be together in one location for many years. 

Now, about this week’s conference. I’m pleased to see the focus on decommissioning, which is an emerging area for both Chevron and our peer companies.  

Our current attention is the retirement of oil and gas assets on Thevenard Island. The process of decommissioning is well underway after 25 years of production, with further land rehabilitation and offshore infrastructure activities planned for this year.  

We’re also progressing plans for the decommissioning of our WA Oil assets on Barrow Island, with oil production set to cease from 2025. 

With an estimated A$50 billion in projects to be completed across our industry over the next five decades, it’s important the responsible retirement of oil and gas facilities is top of mind.  

Another important topic central to the conference this week is how our industry will advance a lower carbon future. 

We recognise that our operations at Chevron Australia are a significant source of greenhouse gas emissions. 

We’re continuing to pursue activities to lower the carbon intensity of natural gas production at Gorgon and Wheatstone.  

With both of our projects soon to have net zero by 2050 greenhouse gas management conditions in place, the path has been set for us to reduce scope 1 net emissions while meeting the region's growing demand for energy. 

Together with our joint venture participants, we’ve already implemented a range of innovative technologies to reduce emissions, and the Gorgon Carbon Capture and Storage system has also abated more than 7.5 million tonnes of greenhouse gases since mid-2019.  

We’re progressing plans to optimise Gorgon CCS and we’re exploring technical abatement solutions that can be developed and deployed at scale, in addition to using verifiable offsets. 

While the lower carbon challenge is significant, and there is uncertainty in how to achieve long-term emissions reductions, we have the commitment and skills needed to find the solutions.  

About a year ago a new business, named Chevron New Energies, was formed to lead this strategy globally for Chevron with Australia and the Asia Pacific a priority region. 
In CCS, we had two key developments last year. The first was that Chevron Australia was granted interest in three greenhouse gas assessment permits offshore WA as part of three joint ventures. 

In addition, a new consortium was formed in Singapore which will evaluate and advance the development of large-scale carbon capture solutions and integrated infrastructure in the country. 

On top of all that, just last week Chevron New Energies signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Japanese energy company JERA that will facilitate us working together in acquiring and developing CCS projects in the United States and Australia.  

These exciting developments highlight that no single company, or nation, has all the solutions. 

But when there is genuine collaboration – between businesses and between countries – great things can happen.  

In closing, we’re proud to continue our association as a major supporter of this event and I would like to thank the Department of Jobs, Tourism, Science and Innovation, and other sponsors, as well as the organizers, in bringing the conference together.  

There’s no doubt expectations of our industry are changing and we need to keep evolving if we are to meet and exceed those expectations. 

And, I firmly believe, we’re up to the task. 

Thank you.