Chevron Halts Gas Exports via EMG Pipeline from Israel to Egypt

(Reuters) — Chevron has halted natural gas exports through a major subsea pipeline between Israel and Egypt and is supplying gas via an alternative pipeline through Jordan, industry and government sources said on Tuesday.

The decision to halt exports via the East Mediterranean Gas (EMG) pipeline comes as fighting intensifies between Israel and militants in the Gaza Strip.

The EMG pipeline runs from the southern Israeli town of Ashkelon, located some 10 kilometers north of Gaza, to El-Arish in Egypt, where it connects to an onshore pipeline.

The 90-kilometer (56-mile) pipeline is the main link between the Chevron-operated Leviathan offshore gas field and Egypt.

Chevron decided to divert the gas due to security concerns as a result of the military conflict, two industry sources said.

Israel's energy ministry confirmed in a statement to Reuters that Chevron had requested to export gas through an alternative pipeline that links Leviathan to Jordan as well as Egypt, known as the Arab Gas Pipeline.

On Monday, Israel suspended production at the Tamar gas field off its southern coast three days after violence erupted in the wake of a surprise attack by Hamas militants in the Gaza Strip on Israel.

Chevron did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Separately, energy industry sources said the amount of gas exported from Israel's giant Leviathan field to Egypt has been slightly reduced as supplies to the domestic market are prioritized but remains close to the quota.

Leviathan has been exporting higher volumes to Egypt than committed under sales agreements for several weeks, the sources said.

"Every molecule we export, we first check it is not needed in the Israeli market," one source said.

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