Marine environment surveys on Western Australia's North West Shelf

RPS has designed and implemented numerous offshore environmental baseline surveys in the remote waters of the North West Shelf for Santos, including for the Keraudren and Dorado projects.

Offshore environmental surveys in Western Australia

RPS has supported Santos’ offshore energy exploration activities by undertaking environmental surveys for potential offshore development sites. The baseline information supported assessment of impacts and risks and fed into their project approvals process under the Offshore Petroleum and Greenhouse Gas Storage Act (OPGGS Act).

Santos engaged RPS’ Marine Science team to design and implement the baseline surveys for water and sediment quality, infauna, and benthic (seabed) fauna habitats and communities, at several offshore sites. 

RPS personnel and crew managing operations on deck while completing offshore marine surveys for Santos in Western Australia.

RPS marine expertise

The survey areas are in Commonwealth waters more than 100 kilometres offshore and the program required detailed planning to complete the surveys safely and efficiently. RPS applied its well-established procedures for safe work in offshore environments to deliver the baseline survey projects without incident or downtime.

Our consultants managed all spatial data and produced maps of the distribution of fish assemblages, pearl oysters and marine habitats, while collecting water, sediment and infauna samples for analysis by appropriately certified laboratories.


RPS experts and expertise at work in WA

RPS National Lead - Marine Science, Jeremy Fitzpatrick on deck and offshore for Santos.  

RPS National Lead - Marine Science, Jeremy Fitzpatrick working offshore for Santos marine environmental surveys, Western Australia

RPS work on the marine environmental surveys included:

  • Designing, conducting, and reporting on technical field surveys of fish assemblages in conjunction with a local university.
  • Collecting water column profile data and analysing water and sediment quality samples.
  • Completing surveys of silver-lipped pearl oysters and pearl oyster habitat to support assessment of likely exposure to underwater noise.
  • Working with CSIRO to design and complete benthic habitat surveys and validate their habitat model.
  • Using existing MetOcean survey data to complement surveys. Assisting in the interpretation of the baseline data for the purpose of environmental impact assessment (EIA)
  • Acoustic logger recoveries.
  • Remote Operated Vehicle (ROV) contractor scoping and management.

Species spotting

Whale spotted while RPS personnel were working on marine environemental surveys for Santos on the North West Shelf, Western Australia

A friendly whale observed while RPS marine science team completes marine environmental survey work for Santos on the North West Shelf, Western Australia

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