50th Anniversary of Oil DiscoveryPrint Page Print this page

A plaque commemorates the 50th anniversary of the first significant oil discovery on mainland Australia.  The discovery was made by Western Australian Petroleum Ltd at the "Rough Range 1" exploration well.

On December 4th 1953 Standard Oil of California (SOCAL) announced in San Francisco that West Australian Petroleum Pty Ltd (WAPET) had discovered high-grade crude oil in its Rough Range-1 well. The report indicated that oil had flowed to the surface through a quarter-inch choke from a depth of some 1,100 metres at a rate of nearly 500 barrels per day.

This was the first oil flow to have been recorded anywhere in Australia, and it caused jubilation throughout the country. The stock market boomed and leading politicians and newspapers claimed that this could be Australia's most significant development of the 20th century. Further, one of America's most respected petroleum geologists stated that it was the most important global oil development since oil was first found in the United States in 1859.


Address:Minilya - Exmouth Road, Overlooking Rough Range, Exmouth, 6707
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -22.412778
Long: 114.031944
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Plaque
Monument Theme:Technology


Actual Monument Dedication Date:Tuesday 9th December, 2003
Source: MA
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au