Abang Johari (left) joined by others giving the thumbs-up at the ground-breaking ceremony.

BINTULU (Sept 21): Sarawak Shell Berhad (SSB), a subsidiary of Shell plc, marked the start of the onshore plant development for the Rosmari-Marjoram project, the first phase of Sarawak Integrated Sour Gas Evacuation System (Sisges), with a ground-breaking event in Bintulu today.

The ceremony was officiated by Premier Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg.

Rosmari-Marjoram gas fields are situated 220 kilometres (km) off the coast of Bintulu, discovered in 2014 and the fields will be primarily powered by renewable energy.

The offshore platform will utilise power from 240 solar panels, while the onshore plant will leverage on hydropower provided through Sarawak power grid system, which is supported by Renewable Energy Certificates (REC). Diesel generators and batteries will be used as backup.

“The estimated cost of investment is few billions US dollar, in other words to us is more than RM10 billion for this particular plant,” Abang Johari told reporters when asked about the cost of the project on the sidelines of the event.

Meanwhile, Country Chair of Shell Malaysia and senior vice president Upstream Malaysia, Siti Sulaiman, said Rosmari-Marjoram is a multi-billion investment and one of Sarawak Shell Berhad’s largest investments in Sarawak.

She said Rosmari-Marjoram’s Bintulu onshore gas plant will be investor number one in SEDC’s Petrochemical Industrial Park (PIP) in Tanjung Kidurong.

According to her, Shell has a long history in Bintulu as they built the first crude oil terminal in the late 1970s and subsequently collaborated with Petronas in developing the first LNG trains here.

“Bintulu is also home to the world’s first commercial gas-to-liquids plant, Shell MDS (M) Sdn Bhd, right next to Petronas’ MLNG plant,” added Siti.

She said Rosmari-Marjoram Platform is located inside the Luconia Shoals National Park where migratory mammals, turtles and coral reefs can be found.

“The Rosmari-Marjoram Platform location and pipeline route were carefully chosen to avoid coral reefs and sensitive marine receptors.

“Over and above the due diligence in managing and mitigating any environmental impact, SSB strives to deliver a Net Positive Impact on the environment and I’m proud to share that we have signed an agreement with Unimas, to collaborate with experts from the university in multiple biodiversity research projects,” she said.

She said the research projects include analysing historical environmental data to help understand the environmental conditions in the region as environmental indicators and to support turtle conservation.

She added Unimas would be integrating dispersed databases of sea turtles in Southeast Asia into the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) database and will conduct a field study on the population of sea turtles in Sarawak to better understand their ecological pattern and diversity in the area so that a more holistic conservation framework can be developed.

“I hope that this collaboration will help to promote local environmental stewardship, grow local talent and establish an in-depth understanding of the environmental conditions, ecology, and species distribution, crucial to sustaining conservation work so that there is longevity to this effort in years to come,” she said.

The Rosmari-Marjoram development is one of the strategic projects to ensure a sustained gas supply to the Petronas LNG Complex.

The project comprises a deep-water subsea facility, a remotely operated offshore platform, and an onshore gas plant.

It also includes one of the longest sour wet gas offshore pipelines in the world stretching more than 200 km.

Rosmari-Marjoram project is designed to produce 800 million standard cubic feet of gas per day (MMscf/d). Gas production is expected to start in 2026.

The Rosmari-Marjoram development will consist of a subsea tie-back, an unmanned well head platform, a 207-km pipeline to shore and an onshore gas plant at Bintulu.

Rosmari-Marjoram’s Onshore Gas Plant marks SSB’s largest onshore project in Sarawak since the construction of Bintulu Crude Oil Terminal (BCOT) and Bintulu Integrated Facility (BIF) in the late 1970s.

SSB (Operator) holds 80 per cent equity interest with Petronas Carigali Sdn Bhd (PCSB) holding the remaining 20 per cent equity interest.

Among those present were Minister of Food Industries, Commodities and Regional Development Dato Sri Dr Stephen Rundi Utom, Minister of Transport Dato Sri Lee Kim Shin, deputy state secretary (Operation) Datu Hii Chang Kee, Petronas senior vice president of Malaysia Petroleum Management (MPM) Mohamed Firouz Asnan, Unimas vice chancellor Prof Datuk Dr Mohamad Kadim Suaidi, Eksons Corporation Bhd chairman Tan Sri Datuk Amar Abdul Aziz Dato Husain and Bintulu Resident Nyurak Keti.