Energy Matters - December 2016

Energy Matters
December 2016

The partners developing Israel’s Leviathan natural gas field announced they will begin drilling in the first quarter of 2017 (Photo: AP Images).

Leviathan Partners to Begin Drilling in Q1 2017

The partners developing Israel’s Leviathan natural gas field announced they will begin drilling in the first quarter of 2017, and reaffirmed their commitment to target 2019 for the production of natural gas. The first stage of drilling will begin next month and has a budget of $77 million. Both the financing for Leviathan’s development and regulatory permissions were secured in recent weeks. “Drilling an additional well at Leviathan is another step in the progress of the project and is evidence of Noble Energy's commitment to meet our target of first gas before the end of 2019,” said Noble Energy Israel Country Manager Bini Zomer.

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Israel and Turkey Seek to Shield Natural Gas Ties from Politics

According to Israeli Energy Ministry Director-General Shaul Meridor, Israel and Turkey are developing a framework for the export of Israeli natural gas to Turkey that would protect contracts between companies in lieu of diplomatic breakdowns. “For banks to eventually finance such a project they will have to know that no matter what happens between the countries politically, the business side will be protected,” stated Meridor. He added that with such protections in place, it is possible for gas to begin flowing as early as 2019. Bloomberg reported in March that partners in Israel’s Leviathan natural gas field are negotiating the export of approximately 10 billion cubic meters of gas per year to Turkey.

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Israeli Solar-Powered Desalination Technology Cuts Energy Costs by 90 Percent

Israeli startup Tethys Solar Desalination (TSD) is revolutionizing water desalination with a new, solar-powered technology. Although previous efforts to use solar energy for water desalination and treatment have historically been inefficient, TSD’s unique technology is low-cost, off-grid, scalable and environmentally friendly. It can process up to 10,000 cubic meters of water per day for small to medium sites. This technique can ultimately cut desalination energy costs by more than 90 percent. TSD’s modules employ solar heat to evaporate the water; the resulting purified water vapor is then collected and cooled back to liquid form. The modules can easily be assembled and use locally available sources of water. This tactic is ideal for a wide array of sites, including factories and hotels, remote villages, small and medium farms, desert resorts and beaches, off-grid locations and disaster areas.

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Israeli Engineers Bring Solar Power to Tanzanian Medical Clinic

Nkaiti Medical Center in Minjingu, Tanzania, will now have a constant source of electricity for the first time thanks to 10 students from Tel Aviv University’s chapter of Engineers without Borders. The Israeli group raised money for the medical center—which is unconnected to Tanzania’s national electricity grid and has struggled to maintain its operations—through a crowdsourcing effort, and subsequently flew to Minjingu to install a solar-powered generator alongside local companies and volunteers. The project was also made possible through a grant from the Kirsch Foundation in California, as well as contributed supplies and expertise from Ormash Solar Technology, the Israeli office of Schneider Electric and Tel Aviv University.

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