Posts Tagged ‘energy’

One day after it was first pumped to Israeli shores, valuable resource flows to processing plant for use in energy market
By Times of Israel staff and AP March 31, 2013, 11:08 pm 0

TamarLeaseNaturalGasRigMideast-Israel-Natrua_Horo-635x357Undated file photo of the Tamar Lease natural gas rig, located 90 kilometers west of the city of Haifa, northern Israel. (photo credit: AP/Albatross Aerial Perspective)

Natural gas from the offshore Tamar field reached Ashdod on Sunday night after it was pumped to Israeli shores for the first time Saturday, four years after its discovery.

The Tamar deposit, discovered in 2009 some 90 kilometers west of Haifa, holds an estimated 8.5 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.

On Saturday, hailed an “important day for the Israeli economy” by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, natural gas from the field was pumped to a newly erected facility on the coast of Ashdod, connected to the gas field via pipelines laid out on the ocean floor, 150 kilometers long and 16 inches wide.

On Sunday, the gas finally reached the Ashdod processing plant from which it will start to flow into the Israeli market.

This newly harnessed resource promises to be a major boon to both the country’s public and private energy needs.

The gas from Tamar is expected to help meet Israel’s energy needs for the next 20 years, Channel 2 said, and will save the economy some NIS 13 billion (some $3.5 billion) per year. Its ahead-of-schedule use will also save Israeli citizens some cash — lowering a planned rise in electricity costs to 6 percent, less than originally planned.

The Tamar deposit, and especially the heftier Leviathan, which was discovered in 2010, are expected to provide Israel with enough natural gas for decades and transform the country, famously empty of natural resources, into an energy exporter.

Leviathan, which boasts an estimated 16 to 18 trillion cubic feet of gas, is expected to go online in 2016, the approximate time when exports are expected to begin.

The discoveries are just a portion of the huge reserves in the Levant Basin, which the United States Geological Survey estimated in 2010 holds some 122 trillion cubic feet of recoverable natural gas.

Future War: Israel’s Massive Natural Gas Reserve Discoveries Draw Enemy Eyes
Massive Leviathan, Tamar Natural Gas Fields Poised to Transform Israel Into Energy Exporter
From The Hashmonean online
16 June 2010

Tamar&LeviathanMapFor 62 years we have made the desert bloom, innovating water & drip irrigation technologies which have literally changed agriculture and the planet itself. Sadly, our quest for the desert’s more famous yield – Oil has been less than fulfilling. Surrounded by the world’s largest energy exporters Israel until now has been no pun intended, dry.

The planet is addicted to oil, nearly everything today is seemingly petroleum based. But the age of big oil is slowly coming to an end. Oil is dirty as evidenced by the tragic disaster off the US Gulf Coast. Developed economies are scrambling to move and develop cleaner burning technologies to both supply our fuel, as well as skyrocketing global energy needs. Coal & Oil aren’t going anywhere just yet, but the next century may belong to Natural Gas as the new big boy of global energy.

Tamar & Leviathan

The last 2 years have seen blessings bestowed on the State of Israel with the discovery of massive natural gas fields in the Eastern Mediterranean by Texas based Noble Energy & Israeli consortiums. Discoveries within arms reach of the Israeli coast and within our territorial waters. In 2009 the Tamar Israel discovery rippled across energy markets, Tamar discoveries can power 50% of Israel’s energy needs for the next 4 decades.

Now in 2010 a new unbelievably larger reserve named Leviathan may yield massive amounts of natural gas, estimated at possibly twice the size of Tamar! If Leviathan yields, it can transform Israel into a global energy exporter.

The Leviathan natural-gas site off the Haifa shore could be twice the size of the Tamar prospect, the largest gas discovery globally in 2009, and position Israel as a gas exporter in coming years, US oil operator Noble Energy Inc. said Thursday.

“Today is a day of celebration for all of us. The State of Israel is an energy independent country,” Yitzhak Tshuva, controlling shareholder of Delek Group, said Thursday. Delek is a partner in the Leviathan natural-gas find through its subsidiaries Avner Oil and Gas LP and Delek Drilling LP, who each own 22.67 percent. […]

“In March, when I was last in Israel, I said that Noble Energy planned to be here for decades to come,” Noble Energy chairman and CEO Charles Davidson said Thursday. “I am thrilled that today’s announcement substantiates the potential of a new and significant energy basin in the eastern Mediterranean, which, if successful, could position Israel as a potential energy exporter in future years.

“I would like to congratulate the State of Israel on the discoveries of the last year and a half, which have the potential to strengthen the economy and security of Israel. Noble is honored to be working with our Israeli partners in this historic development.” […]

Noble has to date been a gracious partner, aware of the delicate needs in Israel to both drive profit and secure the State energy wise. By the same token, Noble and its consortium of Israeli partners will require the State of Israel to tap these reserves. Apart from licenses, there are unique security needs, as well as substantial infrastructure investments needed which will largely fall on Israel to supply.

Lebanon & Its Embarrassing, Ugly Islamic Step Child – Hezbollah

Of course, If Israel has it, you can rest assured Hezbollah wants to lay its greedy little Islamofacist hands on it. The exploratory permits licensed to Noble and its partners where these discoveries are being made are clearly off Israeli waters.

The 2009 Tamar Discovery Off the Coast of Haifa

The Lebanese know that the messy little country they have thanks to their pals like Syria & Hezbollah will not draw the billions in foreign exploratory & drilling investment needed to tap whatever reserves may be off their own coast. That has not stopped Lebanon jealously eyeing Israel’s new reserves, or Hezbollah from issuing threats. After all, Israel belongs to them as per Hezbollah ‘logic’ – Muslim lands occupied by Zionist invaders!

Hizbullah: Israel’s gas belongs to us

Hizbullah claims that that the natural gas fields recently discovered in the Mediterranean, belong to Lebanon and warned Israel against extracting gas from them. Iranian English language paper “Tehran Times” quotes Hezbollah’s executive council chief Hashem Safieddine as saying that it would not allow Israel to loot Lebanese gas resources.

Earlier this week, Lebanese parliamentary speaker Nabih Berri told “AFP”, “Israel is racing to make the case a fait accompli and was quick to present itself as an oil emirate, ignoring the fact that, according to the maps, the deposit extends into Lebanese waters. Lebanon must take immediate action to defend its financial, political, economic and sovereign rights.”

Marine law expert Amir Cohen-Dor of the S. Friedman & Co. told “Globes” that the Dalit and Tamar gas fields are within Israel’s contiguous economic zone, and that under the 1982 UN Law of the Sea Convention, Israel can exploit resources in its economic zone.

Gas War Zone?

Both Hezbollah & the Lebanese Parliament which are today one & the same are getting in on the threats. Make no mistake, this is a threat against infrastructure, pipelines, rigs, shipping and investment needed to tap the reserves that will all be required in the future. The Lebanese have gone so far as to issue veiled war threats..

Lebanese daily “As-Safir” today accused Israel of stealing Lebanon’s natural gas.

Lebanese parliamentarians made similar accusations following the discovery of the Tamar and Dalit gas reserves in 2009.

“As-Safir” correspondent Halami Mussa wrote, “Israel plans to steal natural gas from the territorial waters of Lebanon.” He claims that “the reserves are located outside the territorial waters of Israel and are in Lebanese territory.” […] “a serious political and economic issue”, which could be cause for a diplomatic dispute between Israel and Lebanon.

Mussa said, “The area where the seismic survey was carried out is offshore from the coast of Lebanon, between the international border of Palestine and Cyprus.” He utterly ignores the presence of Israel, but says, “Israel, which received the mandate from Britain, which has no rights to Palestine, gave to some of the license to American companies without any right to do so.”

The Ministry of National Infrastructures Map of Petroleum Rights shows that the Tamar license, as well the licenses that make up the Leviathan structure are located west and northwest of Haifa, south of the Israel-Lebanese border

Potential for conflict is real

With Israeli sovereignty being questioned as usual by Islamists & terrorists, and Lebanon laying absurd claim to Israeli natural gas discoveries the potential for conflict is real. Israeli withdrawals from Lebanon have been certified by the UN, yet that did not stop Hezbollah from launching a war in 2006. The Israeli coastal demarcations are also clear, there is little reason to believe that will stop Hezbollah or its patrons from trying to initiate conflict, terrorism & violence either.

This is part and parcel of the Noble partnership with Israel. Infrastructure – both sea based and land based to process the LNG will need to be patrolled, secured. The State may even be forced into war to secure safe resource extraction.

Turkish Non-Delight!

The notion of Israel becoming an energy player will drive the Iranians and their lapdogs mad, that is to say on top of their already certifiable Islamist state of psychoness. Further, Turkish relations with Israel have been spiralling and it has less to do with Gaza aid flotillas, more to do with large economic interests such as these Gas discoveries.

Israel is poised to knock the Turks a few pegs down on the international scale if it starts exporting large quantities of LNG. This threatens Turkish LNG pipeline plans from Russia, potentially removing them from a profitable picture if Israel begins large sea based exports of LNG to Europe & Asia in the coming decades…

Peace and even clean burning energy in the Middle East does not come cheap.

Caspian Sea set for offshore resurgence
Ian Thom – Wood Mackenzie
1 March 2010

“As of Jan. 1, 2010, BP has the most valuable upstream portfolio (amongst international companies) in the Caspian offshore sector due to its stakes in ACG and Shah Deniz.”

The Caspian Sea is the setting for some of the world’s oldest offshore oil developments. These date to the late 1940s in Azerbaijan, when the Pirallahi, Gurgany Deniz, and Chilov Adasy fields were brought onstream. Azerbaijan remained a prominent offshore producer through the 1950s and, for a while, the Neft Dashlary field took on the mantle of the world’s biggest offshore project.

Despite this early success, over the next 40 years Azeri exploration and production failed to extend much beyond the shallow water Absheron Peninsula area. The priorities of the Soviet state shifted onshore to reserves in the West Siberian basin, and the indigenous industry lacked the technology, experience, and inclination to invest in the known giant reserves of the deeper water Caspian.

Fast-forward to the collapse of the Soviet Union in the early 1990s, when the Caspian was restored to its place of prominence in the international offshore industry. The newly independent states of Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, and Turkmenistan sought partnerships with international oil companies to develop their natural resources and to provide much-needed revenue for the bankrupt, fledgling states.

Now, less than 20 years later, the Caspian offshore is one of the world’s most important sources of oil and gas production growth. In 2010, offshore production is expected to top 1.5 MMboe/d, with plans in place to reach 3 MMboe/d by 2020.

Three giant offshore fields – Azeri-Chirag-Guneshli (ACG), Shah Deniz, and Kashagan – account for the majority of oil and gas investment, and about two-thirds of remaining reserves. ACG and Shah Deniz are providing steadily increasing revenues to the Azeri state and its international partners, while critical new regional infrastructure has been installed in the form of the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan and South Caucasus pipelines.

In Kazakhstan, the Kashagan field is expected to export its first oil in 2013, with construction of a major new export pipeline anticipated for full field development. These new pipelines will unlock reserves in the giant fields while acting as a catalyst for myriad smaller projects which will be ready for development over the next two decades.


The giant ACG field contributes over 1% of global oil supply. It was discovered in 1979, although the production sharing agreement (PSA) was only signed in 1994, with first production three years later. The development comprises five fixed platforms, a large processing facility onshore with oil exported through the 1 MMb/d, Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline. Production has increased steadily since 2005, and is approaching its plateau level of around 1 MMb/d. Subsea tiebacks are installed in the deeper water parts of the Guneshli field, and are the first examples of this technology in the Caspian Sea.

The project partners are BP (34.14% and operator), Chevron (10.28%), INPEX (10%), SOCAR (10%), Statoil (8.56%), ExxonMobil (8%), TPAO (6.75%), Devon Energy (5.63%), Itochu (3.92%), and Hess Corp. (2.72%). Reserves of around 5.4 Bbbl of oil should be produced within the contract period. A further billion barrels of reserves could be added with development of the Balakhany reservoirs, and by enhanced recovery from existing pay zones.

Shah Deniz

Gas from the giant Shah Deniz gas-condensate field is exported to Georgia and Turkey, and ultimately could reach the European market. The field was discovered in 1999 and began production in 2006 from a jackup platform. Well output has averaged 175 MMcf/d. The project partners are BP (25.5%), Statoil (25.5%), LUKoil (10%), National Iranian Oil Co. (10%), SOCAR (10%), Total (10%), and TPAO (9%). The project is jointly operated by BP and Statoil. BP is responsibile for the operations while Statoil manages the commercial aspects of Phase 1 contracts. The field has commercial reserves of over 22 tcf of gas, although only 6.6 tcf is contracted under the first development phase. The operator plans a second phase, which is yet to be sanctioned, to involve construction of an additional platform and subsea facilities to recover of another 10-15 tcf. Gas from the second phase is hotly sought after by a number of competing pipeline projects vying to supply the European market.


The super-giant Kashagan field, largest in the Caspian, is huge even in global terms, with an estimated 13 Bbbl of oil reserves. Its development is proving to be one of the world’s largest and most complex engineering projects. It was discovered in 2000 and is part of the North Caspian Sea PSA. The first development phase is under way, and production is expected to begin in 2013. The field is expected to produce 1.5 MMb/d at plateau, around 10 years after first oil, although these later phases have to be sanctioned by the partners and government, and are subject to huge uncertainties over timing and cost.

The partners are Eni (16.81%), ExxonMobil (16.81%), KazMunaiGas (16.81%), Shell (16.81%), Total (16.81%), ConocoPhillips (8.4%), and INPEX (7.56%). The project operator is North Caspian Operating Co. (NCOC). It is responsible for general management but some of the individual partners have specific roles. Eni is responsible for Phase 1 development until first oil. Thereafter, Shell will have the offshore operations role for Phase 1 and the offshore development role in further phases.

Upstream rankings

As of Jan. 1, 2010, BP has the most valuable upstream portfolio (amongst international companies) in the Caspian offshore sector due to its stakes in ACG and Shah Deniz. ExxonMobil and Total occupy second and third position, although neither has a major operated project, while the main Kashagan partners occupy positions two through six. For comparison, the cumulative remaining value (NPV10) to the four littoral states amounts to $280 billion – a factor of 20 greater than BP.

LUKoil ranks highest in terms of remaining reserves, due to its stakes in Severnyi block, Khvalynskoye, and Shah Deniz. This contrasts to its eighth place in value terms – a contrast which reflects the early stage of the Severnyi development (with major expenditures still to come), its liability for Russian oil export duty, and the large proportion of gas reserves. The main Kashagan partners also rank highly, along with BP and SOCAR.