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While you were focused on the pandemic, Israel approved a pipeline to supply Europe with natural gas

While you were focused on the pandemic, Israel approved a pipeline to supply Europe with natural gas

We’ve been following Israel’s emergence as a natural gas superpower for years, and it’s coming to fruition despite Turkish threats.

We have been following the development of Israel’s natural gas resources for years, and in rather dramatic fashion.

In March 2013, we wrote, Yesterday the Middle East changed forever, and you didn’t know it:

Israel now is pumping natural gas from one of the enormous offshore fields which will transform Israel into an energy-independent nation and a global energy powerhouse….

Natural gas from the offshore Tamar field was pumped to Israeli shores for the first time Saturday, four years after its discovery, in preparation for its first use in the Israeli energy market — a move that could transform the Israeli economy.

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

Israel’s new offshore fields are enormous, which is part of the reason Turkey has been so belligerent….

In August 2015, I updated the situation, Israel one step closer to being energy Superpower, regarding development of the much larger Levaiathan field in the face of domestic political opposition.

In January 2020, after some prior interim posts, we dramatically announced, While you were focused on Soleimani, Israel became a natural gas superpower:

The Leviathan development was delayed by bureaucratic snafus and environmental opposition, but just came on line. And this is a big deal.

The Times of Israel reported on December 31, 2019, that natural gas began flowing:

Gas began flowing from the mammoth Leviathan offshore natural gas field on Tuesday, after the government gave a final go-ahead to Noble Energy to forge ahead with the project despite vocal protests from residents of the coastal region who are concerned about the pollution emitted by the rigs.

But wait, there’s more. Israel also signed a huge natural gas deal with Greece and Cyprus to ship natural gas to Europe, and commenced gas deliveries to Jordan and Egypt

David Markind called it, The other event that rocked the Middle East:

During the last week, earth-shattering events occurred that completely disrupted the Middle East, caused intense anger in certain Arab and Muslim capitals, and threatened war in the region. In other news the Americans assassinated Iranian General Qassem Soleimani.

The pipeline to Europe will take time, and the madman of Turkey is trying to scuttle it, but what already has come on line makes Israel energy independent, with large supply contracts to two of its neighbors, Egypt and Jordan.

So while you were focused on Soleimani, Israel became an energy superpower.

Well guess what? Israel just approved a deal to construct the pipeline to Europe, as Reuters reports:

The Israeli government on Sunday approved an agreement with European countries for the construction of a subsea pipeline that would supply Europe with natural gas from the eastern Mediterranean.

The Eastmed pipeline, which has been in planning for several years, is meant to transport gas from offshore Israel and Cyprus to Greece and on to Italy. A deal to build the project that was signed in January between Greek, Cypriot and Israeli ministers had still required final approval in Israel.

The countries aim to reach a final investment decision by 2022 and have the 6 billion euro ($6.86 billion) pipeline completed by 2025 to help Europe diversify its energy resources….

The pipeline is planned to initially carry 10 billion cubic meters of gas a year with the possibility of eventually doubling the capacity.

You know who’s still not happy? The madman of Turkey.

The Wall Street Journal reports:

The contest over newfound gas riches in the Eastern Mediterranean has triggered a slew of rival maritime claims, pushing the region’s main powers—all of them America’s partners or allies—toward open confrontation.
On one side is a budding alliance of Greece, Israel, Cyprus and Egypt that benefits from the recent finds. On another is the Eastern Mediterranean’s biggest economy, Turkey, which is increasingly flexing its military muscles as it seeks to break its regional isolation….

The EastMed pipeline planned by Israel, Cyprus, Greece and Italy would carry this gas to European consumers—except that Turkey’s recent maritime claims cross its route. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has already said that EastMed won’t go ahead without his assent.

If this website survives long enough, maybe we’ll cover when the first natural gas is pumped into the new pipeline.

Actually, I have an idea. How about the readership chip in for me and the wife to fly to Israel, and then Europe, to verify the reporting? Sounds like a plan?


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Good for Israel.

Erdogan is no greater of a Jew-hater than many American entertainers and sports figures, not to mention people on Congress.

Amazing, how the clinton/obama disease dwarfs Covid in malignancy.

    HImmanuelson in reply to | August 4, 2020 at 2:16 am

    Not even close to being true. Erdogan is 1 step removed from being another Putin. He loathes Israel and brutally represses his own people to cling to power at all costs.

    An honest news person in Turkey has only a slightly longer lifespan than one in Russia and are prone to sudden falls down elevator shafts and from the roofs of buildings, just like in Russia.

    Hollywood actors are enormously ignorant as a whole when it comes to politics and the world but they mostly don’t hate Jews and they wouldn’t annihilate Israel the way Erdogan would if he could.

      artichoke in reply to HImmanuelson. | August 4, 2020 at 12:16 pm

      Antisemites here don’t have power to do what Erdogan can possibly do. We can only speculate what (to pick from many obvious choices) Ilhan Omar would do if she could.

Why should a government (any government) have to “approve” a private enterprise?

    Dusty Pitts in reply to snopercod. | August 3, 2020 at 9:23 pm

    It’s usually a question of ownership. Normally offshore resources are considered the public property of the nation or state that claims the waters.

    Thus the approval would be the owner leasing access to the resource in return for a share of the revenue generated on the market from the sale of, in this case, the extracted natural gas.

    HImmanuelson in reply to snopercod. | August 4, 2020 at 2:08 am

    For the same reasons that the US and/or state governments have to approve drilling and projects in the waters around the US. There are ecological considerations throughout the whole process.

    In the case of Israel, they have to ensure that the claims fall entirely within their maritime boundaries.

    There are defense implications too. Hezbollah has already made it clear that the Israeli gas facilities are targets for their missiles in the next round of war.

That’s good news. Maybe we stop all aid to Israel and other places and start using that money here instead. American citizens first please.

    HImmanuelson in reply to southtexas. | August 4, 2020 at 2:00 am

    Why not focus on the things that matter? Foreign aid is a minuscule portion of the federal budget, entitlements and other items are enormously larger. When you’re bleeding out, you start with the problem spots first, not the tiny stuff.

    Not to mention, unless we’re going to walk away from the world and let things go to complete hell, foreign aid is a very cheap way to promote our interests and help out close allies.

      Arminius in reply to HImmanuelson. | August 4, 2020 at 2:24 pm

      We need to reassess who is and who is not a close ally. Pakistan is not. Yet the Bush administration paid the Pakistanis billions to assist us in the “war on terror” (I hate that term because it doesn’t even identify an enemy). But Pakistan’s intelligence service, the ISI, funneled the money to the Taliban and, lest we forget, gave safe haven to OBL.

      So while we were paying the Pakistanis to help us fight terrorists, they were funding and aiding the very terrorists we were fighting. That’s no ally. It would be far better to strengthen our alliance with India. Our system of alliances may have made sense during the cold war but not any longer.

    Captain Keogh in reply to southtexas. | August 4, 2020 at 10:08 pm

    The military aide we give to Israel in the form
    of credits is spent in the United States of America keeping jobs here.

Check’s in the mail, bud.

Sure, I’ll kick in …provided I get to go along.

Am chai Yisroel!

“…all of them America’s partners or allies…”

I dispute that characterization of Turkey.

The Drill SGT | August 4, 2020 at 7:07 pm

“You know who’s still not happy? The madman of Turkey.”

nor is Putin. It reduces his energy leverage over Europe.

“Actually, I have an idea. How about the readership chip in for me and the wife to fly to Israel, and then Europe, to verify the reporting? Sounds like a plan?”

Support, $36 — to your lives! — sent.