The Alliance is intended to maximise ongoing and future investment in Western Australian research projects relevant to oil and gas exploration and development, hydrocarbon processing, education and training initiatives, and industry-related health, safety and environmental issues.
ChevronTexaco Australia managing director Jay Johnson said the MOU showed the company’s intention commitment to research investment in Western Australia, and to assisting in establishing a centre of excellence for energy research in Perth.
“Over time, ChevronTexaco Australia has collaborated on oil and gas research, education and training with the respective members of WAERA - CSIRO, Curtin University of Technology and The University of Western Australia,” Johnson said.
“In the next few months, ChevronTexaco and WAERA intend to negotiate a Strategic Research Alliance that will create the framework under which the specific research, education and training programs will be conducted.”
Johnson said that while ChevronTexaco Australia signed the MOU, the company’s global affiliates would contribute to selecting the fields of research and would also benefit from program outcomes.
“ChevronTexaco is excited about establishing a long-term strategic relationship with WAERA that gives us a single access point to world class researchers from two of Australia’s leading universities as well as Australia’s largest scientific research organisation,” Johnson said.
“The alliance will foster the exchange of technology and knowledge between ChevronTexaco and WAERA, strengthen CSIRO, university and industry research collaboration in Western Australia and provide a unique opportunity for leveraging technology.”
WAERA acting chief executive Robert Johnson said long-term strategic partnerships with industry were essential in achieving research outcomes that met the industry's needs.
“The proposed alliance will enhance ChevronTexaco’s capabilities and expertise in the areas of hydrocarbon exploration, production and processing,” Johnson said.
“It will also assist WAERA’s growth into one of the world’s foremost energy research centres.”
He said WA had often unique operating conditions – including deep water exploration and production and environmental considerations. This created an ongoing need for technology solutions in areas such as subsea engineering, production and processing technology, reservoir characterisation, as well as hydrocarbon exploration and development.
“These solutions will benefit the industry internationally, making WAERA an important global hub for hydrocarbon research, technology development and education and training services,” Johnson said.
ChevronTexaco Australia and WAERA intend to finalise the Strategic Research Alliance agreement by mid 2005.
In July 2004, the WA Government awarded a $20 million grant over five years to WAERA to increase the number of specialist researchers available to solve the most challenging issues facing the global energy industry.