The geologist who discovered Israel’s first major gas field, naming it after his granddaughter Tamar, says that an inter-ministerial committee’s proposal to increase exports of natural gas is a mistake.

Yossi Langotsky, 87, a retired IDF Colonel and two-time recipient of the Defence Ministry’s Israel Defense Prize, has been in the oil and gas exploration business since the 1960s. He discovered the Tamar gas field in 2009, paving the way for others to find additional massive fields in the Eastern Mediterranean.

Describing himself as “one of the last active Mohicans” among Israeli oil geologists, he told The Times of Israel that it was wrong for a committee chaired by Energy Ministry Director General Udi Adiri to plan an emergency gas supply for the country for only 25 years and seek to sell off the rest overseas.

“John Hofmeister, a former president of US Shell, said it very clearly when he told the Herzliya conference in 2015 that Israel shouldn’t think of exporting any gas until it is sure it has sufficient domestic reserves for 40 to 50 years,” he said.

Geologist Yossi Langotsky. (Screenshot)

Langotsky, who is currently working on a project to find terrestrial oil in the southern Arava desert, added, “National security is not only F-35s and Merkava tanks, but also gas reserves.” READ MORE

Tamar gas field discoverer: Israel’s security demands gas reserve for 40 years

Josh Toupos

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