Noble Energy and two Delek Group subsidiaries announced on Tuesday that they had found a significant amount of natural gas in a portion of the offshore Tamar exploration site where gas production has not yet been initiated.
Noble has a 36% stake in the Tamar drilling license area and the Delek companies have a combined 31% stake. Commercial production from a portion of the Tamar site began in April, but the newly reported find is in another portion of the license area called Tamar SW, a reference to its location southwest of the main Tamar drilling site.
The reported thickness of the undersea natural gas layer is 104 meters, which is considered substantial, possibly indicating the presence of an additional sizeable reserve of gas. Previously the Tamar exploration partnership provided an estimate that Tamar SW contained 20 trillion cubic feet of gas, or about 0.7 billion cubic meters. The SW site is adjacent to the location of the main Tamar drilling platform in Israeli economic waters that is already supplying gas to the local market.
The exploratory drilling at Tamar SW, which began about two months ago, is being carried out by Noble at a cost of about $122 million. The new, smaller site holds the potential of possibly being linked up to the adjacent, larger Tamar field.
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