Energy Ministry: Switch to Natural Gas Saved Israel Nearly NIS 80B

The Israeli Leviathan gas field gas processing rig near Caesarea. (Marc Israel Sellem/POOL)

Israel’s efforts to shift to natural gas have saved its economy NIS 78.6 billion ($24 billion) since 2004, a report published by the Energy Ministry on Monday shows.

According to data, in 2020 alone the total consumption of natural gas (including export) increased by a whopping 24%.

The report attributed the boost to the increased amount of natural gas that Israel exports to its neighboring countries from the Leviathan offshore gas field, which began commercial production of gas at the beginning of 2020.

In 2012, most of Israel’s electrical power was generated from coal, and some from diesel fuel and fuel oil, but by 2020, electrical power generated from natural gas was twice the amount from coal. The use of diesel fuel and fuel oil to power the electric grid became almost obsolete by 2020, the report said.

The Natural Gas Authority said that the drastic drop in gas prices due to the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic has had an adverse effect on the industry. It also said the overall positive impact of natural gas on the economy was even greater because of the environmental benefits.