The Cooper Basin

Holloman Energy holds working interests in exploration properties consisting of 4,544 square kilometers (1.125 million gross acres) in two exploration licenses located in an emerging oil trend on the western flank of Australia’s renowned Cooper Basin. In its more than 50 year production history, this area has sourced over 4 billion barrels of oil and 5 trillion cubic feet of recoverable gas. It has in excess 120,000 kilometers of 2-D seismic data and more than 1,200 wells in 65 oil and 20 gas fields.

In 2010, the Australian Government named successful bidders on five new Petroleum Exploration Licenses within the Cooper Basin. The successful bids contained exploration expenditures in excess of AUD$145 million. The highest guaranteed bid was offered on Block CO2009-A which directly abuts the northern borders of one of our oil concessions. The winning bid requires our newest neighbor to drill 12 exploration wells and shoot 650 square kilometers of seismic on the acquired acreage

“The highly competitive bidding reflects the petroleum industry’s continuing view that the South Australian Cooper Basin represents a real asset in their exploration portfolios… it clearly indicates their perception of the potential for further oil and gas discoveries…”, stated Hon. Paul Holloway, South Australia’s Minister for Mineral Resources. “Success rates for oil are high and discoveries can be commercialized within months”, Holloway continued, “The country’s exploration industry has been reshaped by the turnover of Cooper Basin acreage since 1998 through a number of ‘Company-Making’ discoveries… The CO2009 acreage release confirms that the Cooper Basin remains a very attractive exploration address.”

The Cooper Basin’s most productive sediments for petrochemicals were formed during the Permian period, which ended about 250 million years ago.  Since the end of this era, the Permian’s rich organic sediments have been increasingly buried under additional layers of rock, thus forming deposits of coal, oil, natural gas, and other petrochemicals.Because of the geological history of the Australian continent, the Permian sediments in Central Australia primarily occurred in one distinct region – the Cooper Basin.  This basin is surrounded by and underlies a portion of the much larger Eromanga Basin, which is mostly comprised of younger sandstones and sediments from the more recent Jurassic and Cretaceous periods.  It is these younger formations that overlie the Cooper Basin’s Permian sediments, thus trapping (or “capping”) the petrochemicals underground and creating Australia’s richest oil and gas producing region. There has been a recent surge in drilling activity for oil in the last five years with many new Jurassic Eromanga discoveries being made along the southwestern flank of the Cooper Basin

From a more detailed technical  perspective:

  • The Cooper Basin is a Permo-Carboniferous to Triassic intracratonic basin
  • The Cooper Basin is overlain by the Jurassic– Cretaceous intracratonic Eromanga Basin which has a significantly larger areal extent
  • The basins form the largest and most mature onshore hydrocarbon province in Australia
  • The Cooper Basin Permian shales and coals are dominated by Type III kerogens which have high TOC values forming the source material and have generated hydrocarbons
  • The Patchawarra trough contains the majority of oil and liquids rich gas reserves
  • The basin is underexplored with exploration focusing on four-way structural closures with 3-D seismic playing a significant role in risk mitigation