Corowa Development Project

Project name: 

Corowa Development



Submitted by:

KATO Energy Pty Ltd





Submission type:




Closed for comment, Under assessment





Project description

The Corowa Development is within Commonwealth waters in offshore petroleum permit WA-41-R, located ~60 km from Onslow in the north-west of Australia, in water depths of ~90 m. KATO Energy Pty Ltd (KATO) plans to develop the Corowa field using a relocatable system known as the ‘honeybee production system’. The honeybee production system has been used successfully in many locations around the world, including offshore WA.

The ‘honeybee production system’ comprises the following key elements:

  • Jack-up mobile offshore production unit (MOPU).
  • Production unit on the MOPU, which will separate and process oil, gas and water.
  • Wells workover module on the MOPU, which will have the capability to plug and abandon wells, and potentially to drill; however, a separate mobile offshore drilling unit (MODU) may be used.
  • Short flowline and riser from the MOPU to a catenary anchor leg mooring (CALM) buoy.
  • Floating marine hose to transport oil.
  • Moored floating storage and offloading (FSO) facility, where oil is stored; or direct to shuttle tankers (depending on export option selected).
  • Floating export hose to offload oil from the FSO to export tankers.

The key components covered in this Offshore Project Proposal (OPP) for the Corowa Development


  • Site survey of the proposed location of subsea infrastructure.
  • Drilling of up to four wells.
  • Installation, hook-up and commissioning of a mobile offshore processing unit (MOPU), CALM buoy and mooring arrangements, a short subsea flowline and riser, and a floating storage and offloading (FSO) facility.
  • Operation of the facilities.
  • Decommissioning and removal of subsea and surface infrastructure, and plug and abandonment (P&A) of the wells.

Corowa is part of a portfolio of KATO operated fields. The intent is that as each field is depleted, it is fully decommissioned, and the honeybee production system is then relocated to the next field.

The conservative project life for the Corowa Development (from mobilisation to decommissioning) is approximately five years, with a preliminary project schedule outlined in the table below.  



Indicative duration


Q3 2021

1 month


Initial campaign – Q4 2021 / Q1 2022

Second campaign (if required) – 1 to 2 years after start-up

Initial campaign – 5 months

Second campaign (if required) –

additional 4 months

Installation, Hook-up and commissioning

Q4 2021 / Q1 2022

3 months


Q2 2022


Between 2 and 4.5 years, at best

and high estimates of production,



Between 2023 and 2026

(depending on duration of operations)

3 months

*Timing shown is if Corowa is the first of the KATO operated fields to be developed. If the KATO operated fields are developed in a different order, the timing of Corowa may be later than shown.

 OPP documents

The proposal and supporting materials can be downloaded using the links below:

Draft for public comment - Corowa Development Project - February 2020 (PDF 105MB)

Proponent contact 

KATO Energy Development Manager

Phone: +61 8 9320 4700

Mailing address

Corowa Development Project

102 Forrest Street


Western Australia 6000

Quick links

Introduction to Offshore Project Proposals

Community Information

Making public comment on offshore project proposals information paper (PDF 239KB)

Offshore project proposal assessment policy (PDF 288KB)

Brochure - Offshore petroleum environmental approvals - July 2020 (PDF 5.9MB)