Energy minister says gas from new Leviathan rig flowing to Jordan

Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz says natural gas is now flowing to Jordan after an offshore rig of the Leviathan field went online yesterday.

“Israel is becoming an energy exporter for the first time in its history,” Steinitz tells the Ynet news site.

Though an Israeli firm began sending to natural gas to Jordan in 2017, marking Israel’s first ever gas exports. Leviathan is expected to provide a significantly greater amount.

Steintz says gas is expected to begin flowing to Egypt in the next week to 10 days.

He also dismisses concerns that tests yesterday at the gas rig would lead to a spike in air pollution, calling it “completely baseless, unnecessary hysteria.” He argues there will ultimately be an improvement in air quality, as the natural gas will allow Israel to shutter coal-fired power plants in Hadera and Ashkelon.

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