The opening of licenses for gas exploration in Israel’s Mediterranean Sea waters by the Energy Ministry was done without adequate analysis of the move to climate, economic benefit, or environmental risk, the Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel asserted in a petition filed to the High Court of Justice on Thursday morning.

The area of 6,000 square kilometers is allegedly in close proximity to sensitive marine life habitats and nature reserves. The organization called for a new ecological examination of the region, and the removal of the sensitive sites from the exploration area.

“The petition does not deal with the production of discovered gas and its exploitation, but only against the decision to advance a tender, to search for new gas reserves, on a vast area, in the exclusive economic zone of the State of Israel,” said the petition.