Cyprus energy director sees promise in East Mediterranean gas development

Drilling offshore Cyprus Block 12 will begin later this month in an effort by Noble Energy Inc. to determine the extent of the natural gas resources, tentatively estimated at 10 tcf.

Block 12 is one of a dozen concessions in Cyprus’ maritime Exclusive Economic Zone, and depending on the results of the pending drilling campaign, Cyprus plans to publish tenders for exploration rights to the other 11 blocks.

In an interview with Israel’s Globes business daily, Cypriot Energy Service director Solon Kassinis discussed upcoming tenders, as well as his country’s natural gas potential and its possible joint ventures with Israel.

“We intend to publish tenders for licenses for 12 blocks and an additional area within Block 12 that covers 25% of its area,” Kassinis said, noting that the area is “partly in the Levant basin, which we share with Israel, and part in the Nile Delta basin, which we share with Egypt.”

Kassinis cited a US Geological Survey estimate that the Levant basin has 122 tcf of natural gas, of which Israeli discoveries total 30 tcf. He also noted that the Nile Delta basin has an estimated 223 tcf of gas, and “we believe that most of it is in the area of our licenses.”

The Cypriot official said he is not optimistic about oil being found in Noble’s Leviathan field but said he is “quite certain that oil will be found in Cypriot waters.”

Kassinis said that these estimates, combined with his country’s “very easy” tax regime, has already brought many oil and gas exploration companies to his office, including companies that have avoided Israel due to concern for the companies’ interests in Arab countries.

"Some of the oil majors have visited us, including Total, Norway’s Statoil, and Chevron. Just 2 weeks ago, I was in Norway and they showed a lot of interest in what we’re planning here,” he said.

In response to a proposal by Yitzhak Tshuva’s Delek Group Ltd. to build natural gas storage and export facilities in Cyprus, Kassinis said that there are “issues” that must be clarified at the state level.

Kassinis said that in his last meeting in Israel, he presented five construction proposals: a pipeline from Leviathan and Block 12 to Cyprus; an LNG facility; a methanol plant; power stations; and oil and gas storage terminals to be used for the strategic reserves of both countries.

Regarding threats by Turkey over drilling off Cyrpus, Kassinis said that they have “no choice but to respect international law” and that he believes the Turks will not “make good on their threats.”

Still, he also held out the possibility of his country operating gas concessions under the military protection of Israel.

"It is not within my professional authority, but I think it is possible to expand cooperation to the military sphere. For example, [Israel] will secure Leviathan with [its] ships and submarines; why shouldn’t [it] also secure Block 12, which is only 33 km away?"

Earlier this month, Lebanon warned the United Nations that Israel’s proposed maritime border threatens peace and security, as the two East Mediterranean nations spar over offshore oil and gas reserves.

It said Israel’s claim “infringes on Lebanon's EEZ” and represents “a clear violation of Lebanon’s rights…and puts international peace and security at risk” (OGJ Online, Sept. 8, 2011).

Last month, Israeli defense officials confirmed media reports that Israel’s defense forces, concerned by threats from Lebanon’s militant Hezbollah organization, have deployed drones or unmanned aircraft to protect the country’s recently discovered offshore oil and gas fields.

“The decision to deploy drones was made in order to maintain a 24-hr presence over the site,” said a report in the Jerusalem Post, later confirmed by an Israeli defense official.

Contact Eric Watkins at hippalus@yahoo.com.

Related Articles

Frac ban exemption made in Broomfield

12/12/2014 A Colorado District Court judge has ruled that a hydraulic fracturing ban in Broomfield, Colo., does not apply to an operator that entered into an ...

COGA calls frac fluid study "sound science"

12/12/2014 Chemicals used in fracturing fluid appear to be no more toxic than chemicals commonly found in homes, said an analysis by University of Colorado Bo...

Study links methane contamination in water wells to poor well construction-not fracing-in Marcellus

12/12/2014 A new study found that fugitive gas contamination at eight clusters of water wells in the Marcellus and Barnett shale regions might be linked to we...

WoodMac: US unconventional enters new stage

12/12/2014 The unconventional oil and gas revolution is entering into a new stage with drilling and completion techniques pioneered in unconventional plays no...

Santos makes gas discovery in Cooper basin

12/12/2014

Santos Ltd. has made a wet natural gas discovery in its South Australian Cooper basin permit PEL 513.

Senex moves to commercialize Cooper basin gas field

12/11/2014 Senex Energy Ltd., Brisbane, has successfully tested a sidetrack of the 2007 Vanessa-1 gas discovery in South Australia’s Cooper basin as part of i...

Crown Point reports on two Argentine exploration wells

12/11/2014 Crown Point Energy Inc., Calgary, has released test results for the first of two exploration wells at its Tierra del Fuego concessions in Argentina.

Stone drills successful Utica exploration well

12/10/2014 Stone Energy Corp., Lafayette, La., reported that its Pribble 6HU well in Wetzel County, W.Va., flowed from a 3,605-ft lateral at 30 MMcfd during t...

White Papers

AVEVA NET Accesses and Manages the Digital Asset

Global demand for new process plants, power plants and infrastructure is increasing steadily with the ...
Sponsored by

AVEVA’s Approach for the Digital Asset

To meet the requirements for leaner project execution and more efficient operations while transferring...
Sponsored by

Diversification - the technology aspects

In tough times, businesses seek to diversify into adjacent markets or to apply their skills and resour...
Sponsored by

Engineering & Design for Lean Construction

Modern marketing rhetoric claims that, in order to cut out expensive costs and reduce risks during the...
Sponsored by

Object Lessons - Why control of engineering design at the object level is essential for efficient project execution

Whatever the task, there is usually only one way to do it right and many more to do it wrong. In the c...
Sponsored by

Plant Design for Lean Construction - at your fingertips

One area which can provide improvements to the adoption of Lean principles is the application of mobil...
Sponsored by

How to Keep Your Mud System Vibrator Hose from Getting Hammered to Death

To prevent the vibrating hoses on your oilfield mud circulation systems from failing, you must examine...
Sponsored by

Duty of Care

Good corporate social responsibility means implementing effective workplace health and safety measures...
Sponsored by

Available Webcasts


On Demand

Optimizing your asset management practices to mitigate the effects of a down market

Thu, Dec 11, 2014

The oil and gas market is in constant flux, and as the price of BOE (Barrel of Oil Equivalent) goes down it is increasingly important to optimize your asset management strategy to stay afloat.  Attend this webinar to learn how developing a solid asset management plan can help your company mitigate costs in any market.

register:WEBCAST


Parylene Conformal Coatings for the Oil & Gas Industry

Thu, Nov 20, 2014

In this concise 30-minute webinar, participants have an opportunity to learn more about how Parylene coatings are applied, their features, and the value they add to devices and components.

register:WEBCAST


Utilizing Predictive Analytics to Optimize Productivity in Oil & Gas Operations

Tue, Nov 18, 2014

Join IBM on Tuesday, November 18 @ 1pm CST to explore how Predictive Analytics can help your organization maximize productivity, operational performance & associated processes to drive enterprise wide productivity and profitability.

register:WEBCAST


US HYDROCARBON EXPORTS Part 3 — LNG

Fri, Nov 14, 2014

US LNG Exports, the third in a trilogy of webcasts focusing on the broad topic of US Hydrocarbon Exports.

A discussion of the problems and potential for the export of US-produced liquefied natural gas.

These and other topics will be discussed, with the latest thoughts on U.S. LNG export policy.

register:WEBCAST


Careers at TOTAL

Careers at TOTAL - Videos

More than 600 job openings are now online, watch videos and learn more!

 

Click Here to Watch

Other Oil & Gas Industry Jobs

Search More Job Listings >>
Stay Connected