According to Bloomberg, Perth-based Woodside Petroleum Ltd
. plans to skirt concern among Californians about the safety of liquefied natural gas import terminals by delivering the fuel directly into pipelines from ships moored offshore.
Australia's second-biggest oil and gas producer will invest to develop the new technology and get access to the most populous U.S. state. In June, Woodside withdrew from a plan to build a permanent LNG terminal in the state, which relies on imports for 87 percent of its gas. Larger rivals including BHP Billiton (BHPLF)
have so far failed to persuade Californians to accept construction of terminals on or near the mainland and ease a gas shortage that helped to boost prices more than fourfold since 2001.
Woodside operates Australia's biggest LNG venture, the North West Shelf. The company may supply California from its proposed $3.7 billion Pluto LNG project in Western Australia. Gas could also be supplied from the undeveloped Browse and Sunrise fields, also off northwestern Australia
, Bloomberg reported.