Gas production was halted on Wednesday at the Leviathan gas rig due to an operational error, according to Ynet. The Noble Energy company announced that due to an operational malfunction, gas production was halted at the Leviathan gas rig and that its security flare was activated in order to safely clear gas spillage. The flare is automatic and lights up to prevent pollution or other potential damage to the environment. Gas production resumed several hours later, and company said that no environmental impact is expected due to the malfunction.The Leviathan gas rig is a large natural gas field located in the Mediterranean Sea off the coast of Israel, about 130 kilometers (80.7 miles) from Haifa, and is seen as an attempt by Israel to achieve energy independence. On April 26, Noble Energy issued a statement in which it stated that, as part of the work on the turbo-expander, a turbine through which a high-pressure gas is expanded to produce work, it was possible that natural gas would be released through the flare system.Opponents of the gas rig opposite Israel's coast used the suspension of the turbo-expander to claim that the rig was hazardous to Israel, despite the fact that its establishment and operations are closely monitored by the government."Just as we've warned over the past three years, the hazardous Leviathan rig near the coast is turning out, even to the most optimistic of people, to be a ticking bomb and a serious mistake," said Yoni Sapir, head of the Homeland Guards Association, who has opposed the rig.