Region's gas potential 7.5 times Leviathan, says Noble CEO

“The work is just beginning with a lot more exploration in front of us.”

By KOBY YESHAYAHOU / GLOBES
March 10, 2011 21:49
1 minute read.
Noble CEO Charles Davidson

Davidson 311. (photo credit: Courtesy)

 
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Noble Energy Inc. chairman and CEO Charles Davidson told the CERAWeek energy conference in Houston on Wednesday that the Tamar natural gas field, which is currently under development at an investment of $3 billion, will supply the Israeli market for decades. He added that the Leviathan find puts Israel in the position of potential gas exporter, something no one could have foreseen just a decade ago.

“The work is just beginning,” Davidson said, “with a lot more exploration in front of us.” He said that 120 trillion cubic feet of potential gas resources could be tapped in the greater Levantine Basin off Israel’s coast.

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120 trillion cubic feet is 7.5 times the 16 billion cubic meters of natural gas that Noble Energy and its partners in Leviathan – Delek Group Ltd. and Ratio Oil Exploration (1992) – say exist in the field.

Davidson said that 11 years ago, Israel had no market or infrastructure whatsoever for natural gas just prior to the Mari-B discovery (Yam Tethys), and that, within four years, power plants formerly run on imported oil switched over to natural gas, resulting in some $5 billion in fuel savings and a reduction of 13 million tons of carbon dioxide emissions.

In addition to Israel, in 2007, Noble Energy obtained exploratory rights to Block 12 in the southeastern part of Cyprus’s exclusive economic zone, near Leviathan. Noble Energy’s license in the only one issued to date by the Cypriot government.

Earlier this year, Cyprus and Israel delineated the border of their exclusive economic zones.

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