JERUSALEM, Jan. 2 (UPI) -- The inauguration of the Tamar natural gas production platform heralds a new era for Israeli energy independence, a top stakeholder said.
Natural gas deliveries from the Tamar natural gas field are expected by April. Yitzhak Tshuva, a controlling stakeholder in energy consortium Delek Group Ltd., was quoted by Israeli business newspaper Globes as saying the inauguration of the Tamar field represents a new phase of regional energy momentum.
"With faith, perseverance, and vision, we have achieved Israeli energy independence," he said. "We are proud of this opportunity that has fallen to us to bring the news to Israel and its people of Israeli gas, which will revolutionize the Israeli economy and every Israeli household."
Israel is eager to diversify a natural gas sector that depends in large part on Egypt. Conflict in the Sinai Peninsula has disrupted Egyptian gas deliveries in the past.
Delek Group and Noble Energy, a company with headquarters in the United States, are among the major offshore players in the Israeli natural gas sector. They've discovered enough gas in the Tamar and Leviathan fields to last the country 150 years.
Delek suggested last year that Israel would need more than $10 billion worth of export infrastructure for the natural gas.