ExxonMobil stats exploring for gas off the coast of Greece

ExxonMobil stats exploring for gas off the coast of Greece
ExxonMobil stats exploring for gas off the coast of Greece. Image: JHVEPhoto/Shutterstock.com

The American energy giant ExxonMobil has started a delayed project in search of natural gas reserves off the southwestern coast of Greece.

According to a report published in Associated Press on Thursday, November 10, ExxonMobil’s ship is already in operation in the area.

“The ship has begun. At this moment it is laying the cables, which are needed for the sonic waves used in the prospecting¨, said Kostas Skrekas Energy and Environment Minister on sate run ERT television on Thursday.

According to the report, this move by the Greek government is being heavily criticized by environment groups asides from creating tensions with neighboring Turkey.

Several environment groups have already argued the potential threats of deep-sea prospecting, stating that ¨it would have unbearable consequences on the already vulnerable population of whales and dolphins¨. They also suggest, according to the report, that if such reserves were discovered, it would lead to increase in the dependance of fossil fuels for Greece.

Talking about the environmental impact of this project, Skrekas said that all measures are being taken to ensure no damage is done to the environment or marine life.

“All research is being done with the basic priority of the protection of the environment,” Shrekas according to the report. He further added that in case viable gas deposits are eventually found, “no discounts will be made regarding safety and environmental protection”.

The area reserved for gas exploration includes the Mediterranean’s deepest water at more than 5,000 meters. This location is a home for endangered sperm whales and, because sonar is used to bounce sound waves off the bottom, it affects all animals due to their sensitivity to underwater noise.

Thank you for taking the time to read this article, do remember to come back and check out the EuroNews247 website for all your up-to-date European news stories.