A natural gas reserve worth an estimated $95 billion has been discovered off the coast of Israel, it was announced yesterday by US company Noble Energy.
The discovery, based on preliminary results of production tests received in the last few days, is the largest natural gas find ever made in Israel, and the largest made in the world in the last decade.
According to the 3D seismic survey, over 16 trillion cubic feet of gas was discovered about 130 kilometers offshore of Haifa, and 29 kilometers from the earlier Tamar discovery. The results match estimates first announced in June, also based on a 3D seismic survey.
Noble Energy owns 39.66 percent of the prospective discovery. Other partners include Israel’s Delek Group, Avner Oil and Gas, Delek Drilling (22.67% each) and Ration Oil Exploration (15%).
Last year, Israeli company Isramco announced that it had discovered reserves of natural gas worth $15 billion at the Tamar 1 offshore drill site, 90 kilometers from Haifa.
“Leviathan is the latest major discovery for Noble Energy and is easily the largest exploration discovery in our history,” said Charles Davidson, CEO of Noble Energy.
Yoram Turbowitz, CEO of Delek Group, warned that the find would require a huge investment in infrastructure, with state aid.
Noble Energy president and COO David L. Stover said: “This discovery has the potential to position Israel as a natural gas exporting nation. For nearly a year now, we have had a team evaluating market possibilities, which includes various pipeline and LNG options. It’s our belief that the natural gas resources at Leviathan are sufficient to support one or more of the options being studied.”