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August 27, 2016 / 23 Av, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘oil’

Erdogan to Quit If Putin Proves Claim Turkey Imports Oil From ISIS

Tuesday, December 1st, 2015

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has lashed back at claims by Russian President Vladimir Putin that Ankara buys its oil from Da’esh (ISIS).

The exchange took place on the sidelines of the COP 21 global conference on climate change taking place in Paris.

“We have received additional data which unfortunately confirm that this oil, produced in areas controlled by the Islamic State (ISIS) and other terrorist organizations, is transported on an industrial scale to Turkey,” Putin said, according to the Hurriyet Daily News, a Turkey-based newspaper.

“We have all grounds to suspect that the decision to down our plane was motivated by the intention to secure these routes of delivering oil to ports where it is loaded on tankers,” Russia’s TASS news agency also quoted Putin as saying during a news conference on the sidelines of the climate talks.

Speaking to reporters in Paris, Erdogan denied the claims, saying Turkey obtained all its oil and gas imports “through the legal path… We are not dishonest so as to do this kind of exchange with terrorist groups. Everyone needs to know this,” he said. “If evidence of this kind is found, let those who find it present it,” he added, according to TASS.

Erdogan labeled the accusations “slander” and vowed to resign if the claims were in fact proved.

“I will say something very strong here. If such a thing is proved, the nobility of our nation would require that I would not stay in office,” he was quoted by the state-run Andolu news agency as saying. “I am asking Mr. Putin, would you stay in that office? I say this clearly.”

Nevertheless, Erdogan clearly was also mindful that his nation cannot afford to alienate mighty Russia, and appeared to be working hard to avoid it. In his remarks he described Moscow as a “strategic partner,” adding, “Even if it is just a piece of string remaining … we don’t want ties to be cut. How Russia will proceed, I cannot know.”

Ultimately, however, Erdogan said that continued Russian sanctions against his country would be met with those of Turkey – but not yet.

“Let’s act patiently and not emotionally,” he told reporters. “Let’s let their chips fall as they may, then if we have our own chips, we’ll let those fall.”

Hana Levi Julian

Huge Oil Discovery in Golan Heights Can Make Israel Energy Self-Sufficient

Wednesday, October 7th, 2015

There’s oil in them northern Golan Heights … A LOT of oil, according to experts involved in drilling for the black gold over the past year.

Enough, in fact, to potentially make Israel self-sufficient for many years to come, according to Afek Oil and Gas chief geologist Dr. Yuval Bartov, who spoke on Wednesday with Israel’s Channel 2 TV news. Afek is a subsidiary of Genie Energy, a U.S. firm.

“We are talking about a strata which is 350 meters thick and what is important is the thickness and the porosity,” Bartov said.

“On average in the world strata are 20-30 meters thick, so this is ten times as large as that, so we are talking about significant quantities. The important thing is to know the oil is in the rock and that’s what we now know.”

The potential for production is huge: barrels in the billions, certainly enough to provide for decades of local consumption in a country which uses 270,000 barrels per day.

But now the question comes down to production costs – and the cost to the environment.

How easily can the oil be extracted from the ground, and what will such a process do to the flora and fauna in the area around the production site, if anything?

The debate over the latter issue might cost the state millions in political wrangling alone, not including the very real issue of how the environment will need to be protected. The complexities involved in extracting the oil may also end up being a more costly or lengthy process, depending on how far down the black gold runs and how difficult it is to bring up.

All of that assumes, of course, that the geopolitical debates over the Golan Heights will have been put to rest by the time the region’s oil production is ready to flow.

Exploratory drilling which began in December 2014 ended with three sites being tapped. Afek recently submitted a request to the government for authorization to drill an additional 10 wells.

Hana Levi Julian

Huge Oil Discovery on the Golan Heights

Wednesday, October 7th, 2015

Syrian rebels, the Islamic State (ISIS) and the Assad regime, and today that means Russia, now have another reason to capture the Golan Heights – oil.

Drilling that began more than a year ago has exposed a huge find of billions of barrels of oil, but it is too early to know if the black gold can be extracted at a price that would make the oil commercially viable.

Afek Oil and Gas chief geologist Dr. Yuval Bartov was quoted by Globes as saying:

We are talking about a strata which is 350 meters thick, and what is important is the thickness and the porosity. On average in the world strata are 20-30 meters thick, so this is ten times as large as that, so we are talking about significant quantities. The important thing is to know the oil is in the rock and that’s what we now know.

The drilling is in the southern Golan Heights, far away from the northern border but several miles from the eastern border. Syria has claimed the entire Golan since it lost the strategic and water-rich area in the Six-Day War in 1967.

If oil can be extracted, it will be a huge bonanza for Israel and an enormous reason for whoever rules in Syria, or for Hezbollah that is fighting with Assad’s forces and is based in Lebanon, to launch a war on Israel. Israel uses approximately 270,000 barrels a day. Billions of barrels of oil would satisfy the country’s need for a long time.

If the oil can be produced at today’s prices, which are the lowest in years, it would generate a huge employment boom. It also would infuriate environmentalists, who have fought oil drilling the Golan Heights and virtually anywhere else in Israel because of damage to the pristine landscape.

Drilling in the Golan Heights was delayed by environmentalists and was resumed last February when the court dismissed their appeal to stop the work.

The read area marks the eastern border with Syria, The black area is the approximate location of the oil drills.

The read area marks the eastern border with Syria, The black area is the approximate location of the oil drills.

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

Knesset Approves Natural Gas Outline

Wednesday, September 9th, 2015

The Knesset plenum approved the natural gas outline presented to the lawmakers by the government on Monday.

There was considerable concern prior to the vote as to whether parliamentarians would balk at some of the elements of the deal, but as it turned out, it passed with a healthy majority.

“We have improved the outline. It passed the Cabinet and passed the Knesset by an overwhelming majority,” said Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu in a statement following the Knesset session. “There is one more obstacle but when I want to achieve something, I achieve it.

“There will be gas for Israel. I want it for the citizens of Israel, to lower the cost of living, to channel vast sums to the state coffers for energy security. This will be achieved. We are moving forward step by step and overcoming one obstacle after another.

“They told us at the outset: We have not seen the outline so we opened the outline. They told us to improve it; we improved it. They told us to submit it to the Cabinet; we did so and it was approved. They told us to submit it to the Knesset and we approved it by majority vote. Now we have one obstacle left and we will overcome it because it is the right thing for the citizens of Israel.”

Jewish Press Staff

Kuwait Says Lebanon, Turkey ‘Better Suited’ for Syrian Refugees

Monday, September 7th, 2015

A Kuwaiti official has cleared up the mystery floating why none of the oil-rich Gulf nations, including Saudi Arabia, have yet allowed the Syrian refugees fleeding the savage civil war in their land to set foot on their shores.

Kuwaiti official Fahad Al Shalami told France24 television in a broadcast interview on Sept. 2 that in fact, the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) should never accept Syrian refugees.

Kuwait and the other GCC countries are “too valuable to accept any refugees,” Al Shalami said.

“Our countries are only fit for workers. It’s too costly to relocate them here.

“Kuwait is too expensive for them anyway, as opposed to Lebanon and Turkey which are cheap,” he explained. “These countries are better suited for the Syrian refugees.”

But there is also another, equally important reason the oil-rich nations should not welcome the Syrian refugees, Al Shalami said.

“In the end, it is not right for us to accept a people that are different from us. We don’t want people who suffer from internal stress and trauma in our country!”

Hana Levi Julian

Gasoline Prices to Drop by Nearly 5 Percent

Wednesday, August 26th, 2015

The government once again is preventing Israeli motorists from enjoying the full effect of the plunging price of oil and will limit the drop in the price at the pump to 25 agorot midnight Monday.

A hike in the excise tax will rake in another 5 agorot a liter for the Finance Ministry.

The new price of 95 octane will be 6.05 shekels at self-service stations, but discounts often are available at several stations run by smaller companies.

The price of oil has dropped by nearly 20 percent since last month, but the shekel-dollar rate has risen by 2 percent.

The government adjusts the price of gasoline at the pump at the of every month, ostensibly to prevent gasoline companies from charging too much money

In effect, the price control actually guarantees the companies a fat profit, which explains why discount stations cut the rate even further and still make lots of money.

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

Report: Israel Buying Most of Its Oil from Iraqi Kurdistan

Monday, August 24th, 2015

For a number of months, Israel has quietly been importing more than three quarters of its crude oil from the semi-autonomous northern region of Iraq still controlled by the Kurds, despite some unhappiness from Baghdad.

The remainder is purchased from Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan and Russia, its long-time suppliers.

News of the deals was made public early Monday in a report on the international Financial Times website.

Refineries and oil firms in Israel imported more than 19 million barrels of Kurdish oil between May 1 and August 11, according to satellite tanker tracking data, trade sources and shipping data. Among the trading companies involved in these quiet transactions have been Vitol, Petraco and Trafigura, FT reported.

Total sales for the period at this volume, using international prices, are worth (Israel may have paid) close to $1 billion.

Other customers for Kurdish oil during this period have included Italy, Greece and Turkey. In addition, some 17 percent of exports were shipped to Cyprus, where the oil is then transferred from one ship to another for export “elsewhere.”

But the export of northern Iraqi oil begins with shipping through Turkey’s Mediterranean port of Ceyhan. From May 1 to August 11, more than a third of that was sent to Israel, although some may have subsequently been exported elsewhere.

However, Israel’s domestic consumption levels out at approximately 240,000 bpd (barrels per day).

There have been three benefits to the move, if not more.

First and most obvious, Israel has been able to obtain the crude at a reasonable price due to its geographic proximity. Some industry sources say Israel is receiving a discount from the Kurds, although Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) officials denied the report.

Second, because Israel invests so much of its consumer dollars in Iraqi Kurdish product, the Kurds have better resources with which to fund their war against Da’esh (ISIS). This is especially important, since it seems that only the Kurds have been able to present a consistent, long-haul effective fighting force against the Da’esh terror machine.

Third, every dollar invested with Iraqi Kurdistan is a dollar that frays the ties between Erbil and Baghdad – or perhaps, the ties between Erbil and Iran. For decades, Baghdad has feared the Kurdish yearning to carve out a free and sovereign state of Kurdistan.

But today one can quite legitimately ask who exactly is in control in Baghdad. Most regional analysts believe the Iraqi government no longer exists, other than to provide a fig leaf for Tehran.

Israel is one of the biggest customers of northern Iraqi / Kurdistani oil at this time. Baghdad still does not recognize the State of Israel. Cash-strapped Kurds, however, are much less concerned about who is buying the oil; their concern is getting money to pay for survival.

“We do not care where the oil goes once we have delivered it to the traders,” a senior Kurdish official was quoted as saying to FT. “Our priority is getting the cash to fund our Peshmerga forces against Da’esh (ISIS) and to pay civil servant salaries.”

Hana Levi Julian

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/report-israel-buying-most-of-its-oil-from-iraqi-kurdistan/2015/08/24/

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