BHP Billiton, ExxonMobil to spend $1 billion on excess carbon treatment at new gas fields in Victoria

BHP Billiton and ExxonMobil are spending around $1 billion on the treatment of higher carbon intensity of new gas fields being tapped.

The two resources giants would spend $992 million building a ''conditioning plant'' adjacent to their Longford gas plant in Victoria, Australia, for removing excess carbon dioxide from three new gas fields in Bass Strait that would soon go into production.

The two companies which are running the 50-50 joint venture at Longford, would pay $500 million for the carbon plant.

The carbon-removal plant would form part a $4.4-billion plan for the development of new fields, which were known as Kipper, Tuna and Turrum.

On passing through the new carbon plant, the gas could be fed into the existing processing plant at Longford built for gas having lower carbon composition.

The carbon dioxide removed at the first stage would be released into the atmosphere, the companies though would be building it with the capacity to adapt to carbon capture and storage in case such technology proved viable.