Noble Energy Inc. has started natural gas production from the Mari-B field in the Mediterranean Sea offshore Israel. Mari-B is the first offshore natural gas production facility in the State of Israel.
The Israel Electric Corp. Ltd. (IEC) will purchase natural gas from Noble Energy. IEC plans to start up one gas turbine and four boilers converted to burn natural gas at its Ashdod electric power plant through the end of 2004.
Noble Energy expects gross production to increase as the boilers are fired up, reaching 100 MMcf/d by the end of March 2004. Gross production will increase during 2004 as IEC expands its gas-fired generation capacity.
Noble Energy made the Mari-B natural gas discovery in March 2000 with the Mari-B No. 1 well 15 mi offshore.
The company completed construction and installation of the Mari-B jacket and platform in early 2003. Production facilities will produce up to 600 MMcf/d.
The company estimates total recoverable reserves in the Mari-B field to exceed 1 tcf of natural gas.
Noble Energy also has undeveloped discovery Noa, which contains 200 bcf of natural gas. Noa will be brought on line through a sub-sea tieback to the Mari-B platform.
Noble Energy operates the project with a 47.1% working interest with partners Avner Oil Exploration Ltd. Partnership 2%, Delek Drilling Ltd. Partnership 25.5%, and Delek Investments and Properties Ltd. 4.4%.