Yesterday, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz inaugurated a newly arrived platform jacket for the Leviathan natural gas reservoir, which is the final technical stage in preparing the offshore gas structure for extensive production capabilities. After a 28-day journey across the Atlantic, the Texas-built 98-meter-high jacket arrived in Israel, eliminating much of the uncertainty about whether the project would be completed on schedule, by the end of 2019. “This is a celebratory day for the energy sector and for the state of Israel. We are now starting the final stage of developing the largest natural treasure in the State of Israel – the Leviathan natural gas field. And what we see behind us, is the laying of the ‘platform jacket’, the base of the ‘platform jacket’, which will enable us to produce huge quantities of natural gas from the Leviathan gas field later this year, for the welfare of the citizens of Israel, the Israeli Prime Minister said.”
Israel’s Leviathan natural gas reservoir, which was discovered in 2010 about 120 kilometers off the country’s Mediterranean coast, is one of the world’s largest gas discoveries of the past decade.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu underscored in his inauguration speech, that the expected completion of the gas platform later this year, is a critical component in Israel’s strategic, energy, economic and diplomatic strength. In his words, “Completion of the Leviathan gas platform and the pumping of gas from this field later in the year is a critical component of the strategic, energy, economic and diplomatic strength of the State of Israel. A gas pipeline will run from here and will link us to the gas economy of Europe. It will reach our Arab neighbors. First and foremost, it will supply clean gas to the citizens of Israel. Two-thirds of every shekel’s worth of gas extracted from the sea here will go straight into the state treasury. This is hundreds of billions of shekels that will serve us in education, social welfare and the other vital needs of the State of Israel and the citizens of Israel.”
The Israeli leader further declared the Leviathan discovery as “A great revolution –Israel evolves into an energy power. An independent Israel will not depend on anyone for its energy needs. This is great news and I am proud that it is happening now, this year, for all of you.” It is important to note that while Israel’s Delek Drilling holds a 45.34 percent majority of the Leviathan and Israel’s Ratio Oil maintains 15 percent; the project operator, which is the American Texas-based Nobel Energy, has a 39.66 percent stake in the field.