NICOSIA, Cyprus (AP) — Drilling by ExxonMobil set for late subsequent month to substantiate how a lot pure fuel is contained in a large deposit off Cyprus’ southwestern coast will map out how the gas will attain potential markets in Europe and Asia, the island nation’s vitality minister mentioned on Wednesday.
Minister Natasa Pilides says the “important” drilling on the ‘Glaucus-1’ properly inside block 10 of Cyprus’ unique zone scheduled to begin in 6-8 weeks will decide if the deposit is on the increased or decrease finish of its estimated measurement of 5-8 trillion cubic toes (142-227 billion cubic meters) of pure fuel.
A better confirmed amount would naturally imply higher earnings and in flip push exploitation of the deposit up the precedence record for ExxonMobil and associate Qatar Petroleum among the many completely different initiatives they’re at present engaged on.
Pilides informed The Related Press in an interview that transferring the fuel by pipeline to Egyptian processing vegetation the place it will be liquefied for export aboard ships is at present the “most probably possibility.”
However potential building of a processing plant on Cyprus isn’t fully out of the image relying on the general amount of fuel discovered off the island that may make the venture economically possible.
A consortium made up of France’s Complete and Italy’s Eni is ready to begin drilling within the first half of subsequent yr to find out the scale of what was described as a “promising” deposit at its “Calypso 1” properly in block 6 that abuts space the place ExxonMobil-Qatar Petroleum is licensed.
The Complete/Eni consortium is licensed to prospect for hydrocarbons in seven of 13 blocks off Cyprus. “Calypso” may prolong to neighboring block 7 which belongs to the consortium.
Pilides mentioned pure fuel is a cleaner-burning, standard gas that nations in Europe and elsewhere may use to transition to extra renewable sources for vitality technology. She mentioned that fashions present that even nations that generate most of their vitality from renewables nonetheless have “fairly a excessive proportion” of both pure fuel or nuclear energy as a back-up vitality supply.
Know-how hasn’t reached the purpose the place renewables may cowl all a rustic’s vitality wants so “there’s nonetheless room for pure fuel.”
“As a result of (fuel) costs are rising we’re going by way of a part the place there’s positively extra hope that if there’s enough portions in Cyprus, it may present another for our area,” mentioned Pililides.
Pilides mentioned Egypt has been eager in nudging ahead regional cooperation for a pipeline to switch fuel from Cypriot and even Israeli waters to its processing vegetation.
Though no numbers have been mentioned, Pilides mentioned the likelihood is being examined for a pipeline that may convey fuel to Egypt from Cyprus’ ‘Aphrodite’ deposit and Israel’s large, adjoining area ‘Leviathan’ – each of that are operated by Chevron.