Israel’s High-Pressure Leviathan Gas 4 Miles Down and Too Costly To Develop

stopped drilling at 6500 meters, or slightly over 4 miles.

Israel: Noble Energy Breaks Levant Basin Depth Record. Stops Drilling

Homer Ferrington rig

Israel’s High-Pressure Leviathan Gas 4 Miles Down and Too Costly To Develop

Peter Chamberlin

Israel is having problems trying to profit from the Mediterranean gas field that it has been trying to steal from some of its neighbors.  Drilling has been stopped since May 3, 2012 (SEE:  Leviathan Oil Well Drilling Postponed) by Noble Energy’s “Homer Ferrington” rig, which had been working in the Leviathan gas field.  Drilling stopped because of the unexpected high gas pressures encountered at the greatest depths.

Development of high-pressure gas, or “sour gas” (high sulfur content plus high pressure) requires deeper wells (new deep-drilling rig has been held-up in S. Korea until late next year) and extra facilities for reducing the pressure and lowering the sulfur content of the gas, in addition to the missing infrastructure that will be needed to be built for moving the gas from the Mediterranean to Israel, or to LP gas facilities, for shipping the product elsewhere.

As things now stand, Israel will “face a natural gas shortage from 2015.”

In addition to the drilling problems, there have also been legal hang-ups (court challenge to monopoly ownership of Leviathan), as well as financing difficulties in acquiring partners.  The major oil companies are afraid to invest in Israel, for fear of pissing-off the Arabs.  Even companies like Dutch giant Shell will only consider investing in gas and oil exploration through third party partners, like Woodside Petroleum (Shell holds 23% of Woodside stock), which is allegedly a conglomerate composed of Chinese, Texas and Australian interests, in order to have deniability about any investment which might develop.

According to this interview in MoneyWeek, with Duke Energy CEO Jim Rogers, he claimed in 2006 that he “owned Woodside Petroleum,”  The Woodside Energy company is currently at the center of an international spy scandal after having just acquired drilling rights off East Timor.  That acquisition is at the center of an international stink storm that is now being generated by govt. leakers.  A cloud of suspicion hangs over the drilling contract which may have relied upon insider information, obtained through espionage conducted by Australian spy agency ASIS, Australian Secret Intelligence Service  (SEE:  Australia’s Timor Spying Scandal. More Whistleblowers Emerge).

Here we have a very clear example of a national spy agency serving the interests of the corporations, confirming the evidence that Steve Kangas died for to bring it to the Internet.  Steve died of a gunshot wound to the head in the home offices of conservative leader Richard Mellon Scaife.  Mr. Scaife was Kangas’ favorite research subject (SEE:  The Origins of the Overclass).  His focus was upon exposing the nexus between the CIA and the rich and powerful and the corporations which they owned.

Are NSA spies acting as mentors to other intelligence agencies, manipulating them to align their interests with theirs, to facilitate their search for insider information for the big oil companies and corporations?