CalEnergy Resources (Australia) Limited (CRA), is the sole operator of the Whicher Range gas field permits.  CalEnergy is a subsidiary of the U.S. based Berkshire Hathaway Energy.



Project Update

January 2018

CalEnergy is planning to decommission the two exploration wells which have been used to test the potential for natural gas production in the Whicher Range, south of Busselton. The wells, WR1 and WR4, will be sealed with concrete and the well heads removed. The land immediately around the well locations will be rehabilitated in line with conditions to be set out by the Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety.

The decommissioning work will meet the company’s commitment to undertake reservoir pressure testing at the two wells.

CalEnergy has completed an extensive evaluation of all available geological data. The company remains convinced that hydraulic fracturing – or fracking – will not be suitable for developing the Whicher Range gas resource.

At this stage the company has not seen sufficient economic or technical evidence to justify any short term, substantive exploration activity within the exploration permit EP-408. On this basis CalEnergy has no plans or approvals for further drilling, well-testing or seismic data acquisition.

A portion of Exploration Permit EP-408 has been declared a gas resource Location in the Whicher Range area. The nomination is required under petroleum exploration regulations.  

Key tasks

The major tasks for the decommissioning program will include:

  • Finalising plans for well decommissioning at two locations (Whicher Range-1 and Whicher Range-4)
  • Finalising site rehabilitation, monitoring and assessment plans based on requirements to be set out by the relevant government regulators
  • Routine care and maintenance site inspections until the wells are decommissioned.
  • Detailed engineering design work to decommission the two wells
  • Site operations to safely decommission the wells based on regulator-approved:
    • :Environmental plans
    • Safety management  systems and
    • Operational programs
  • Site rehabilitation, monitoring and assessment

Community consultation

Consultation with the community will remain a priority for CalEnergy. This will include website updates and feed-back on questions from the community.

If you have any questions, please contact Travis Enman at or phone ((08) 6500 8500.


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