The US energy giant was ordered to shut down the field for security reasons after the outbreak of the Israel-Hamas war.

Tamar platform
n this handout image provided by Albatross, the Tamar drilling natural gas production platform is seen off the Ashkelon shore in Israel, February 2013. – Albatross via Getty Images

Adam Lucente November 13, 2023

Chevron said on Monday it has resumed supplying natural gas from Israel’s Tamar field following a brief halt at the outset of the war that began on Oct. 7. 

A spokesperson for Chevron confirmed to Al-Monitor that the company has resumed supplying customers in Israel and the region from the Tamar gas field. The company’s subsidiary Chevron Mediterranean Limited was instructed by the Israeli Energy Ministry to resume production last Thursday, according to the spokesperson.

The ministry ordered Chevron to suspend operations in the Tamar field on Oct. 7 following Hamas’ attack inside Israel that sparked the ongoing war.

The Tamar gas field is located off the coast of northern Israel in the eastern Mediterranean Sea and accounts for around 70% of Israel’s energy needs. In addition to domestic use, Israel exports gas to both Egypt and Jordan. 

Chevron holds a 25% stake in Tamar and the United Arab Emirates’ Mubadala Energy holds an 11% stake. The remainder is held by various other American and Israeli firms.

The Tamar field has a production capacity ranging from 7.1 to 8.5 million cubic meters per day, according to Chevron.

Chevron said production from the Leviathan gas field, located further west, has continued.

Why it matters: Despite the temporary shutdown, Israel has been able to meet its domestic needs and supply international customers via production from other gas fields. Safety concerns over the Israel-Hamas war have eased and Israeli gas exports to Egypt have risen around 60% this month as a result, Bloomberg reported on Monday.

Late last month, Israel announced it awarded gas exploration concessions to BP, Eni and other firms.

The Tamar shutdown nonetheless demonstrates the continued risks of operating in Israel due to the geopolitical situation. The field also shut down in 2021 during the war between Israel and Hamas at the time.

Know more: The war broke out as Israel and Europe were eyeing greater gas cooperation. Europe is looking to import Israeli gas as it seeks to reduce dependence on Russia.

Progress was being made before the Gaza war. In September, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he expected “decisions in the next three to six months” on exporting gas to Europe. Netanyahu made the comments following a meeting with Cypriot President Nikos Christodoulides and Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis in Nicosia on the plans.

Egypt already re-exports some of the Israeli gas it receives to Europe.