Sabotaged Gas Pipeline: Relying on Egypt in future is doubtful
Israel’s interest in natural gas as an energy source has been written about several times on Green Prophet, beginning with the Yam Tethy gas exploration projects in the Eastern Mediterranean. With the second sabotage of the natural gas pipeline between Egypt, Israel and Jordan, a few days ago, from which Israel has been receiving 40% of its natural gas supplies, more attention is now being shifted to the offshore drilling projects being carried out by companies such as Noble Energy and Tshuva’s Delek Group.
Yam Tethys drilling platform
The Yam Tethys Sea Group is owned by both the American company Noble Energy and Israel’s Delek Group. Both companies have been involved in exploration and production of natural gas from several underwater gas fields located off Israel’s coastline.
Some of these gas field discoveries have since resulted is disputes between Israel and Lebanon, who also claims ownership of gas deposits in parts of the Mediterranean that are being explored by Israel.
And forget about Egypt compensating for the lost gas. This simply won’t happen.
Natural gas, which many energy experts say is much cleaner than other fossil fuels, is being given more attention by the Israeli government as a prime energy source for the future. It is also said to be turning Israel into a “world class game changer” as an important energy production country.
While not the cleanest or most environmentally friendly energy source, the availability of natural gas will help supply Israeli energy needs, and even perhaps provide an energy export possibility such as that being considered by building an undersea pipeline to Greece.
But in light of the sabotage of the gas pipeline from Egypt, constructing a gas pipeline from Israel to Europe is an idea fraught with challenges, including sabotage by groups like Hamas or Hezbollah.
Still, and barring any such acts or natural disasters like undersea earthquakes, using natural gas is better than another idea of mining oil shale, which Israel is also said to be rich in.
Solar energy, while being developed now, will only supply about 10-15 percent of the country’s total energy needs – and that only within the next 10-20 years. Combined with wind and possibly wave energy, it will be a long time until renewable energy can provide a substantial part of Israel’s energy needs. Even electric cars by companies like Better Place will need to rely on energy sources like natural gas to power the generators to provide enough electricity to recharge electric car batteries.
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