Saturday, June 11, 2011
Israel the new petro state?
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The old energy order in the Middle East is crumbling, with Iran and Syria having left the Western fold and others, including Saudi Arabia, the largest of them all, in danger of doing so. Simultaneously, a new energy order is emerging to give the West some spine. In this new order, Israel is a major player.
The new energy order is founded on rock -the shale that traps vast stores of energy in deposits around the world. One of the largest deposits -250 billion barrels of oil in Israel's Shfela basin, comparable to Saudi Arabia's entire reserves of 260 billion barrels of oil -has until now been unexploited, partly because the technology required has been expensive, mostly because the multinational oil companies that have the technology fear offending Muslims.