In his January 31, 2014 Zion Oil & Gas Update, Company President Victor Carrillo announced: “Our original plans to re-enter the Elijah #3 well were delayed primarily due to problems that Lapidoth, our drilling contractor, experienced while drilling another well for a third party. In early January 2014, we initiated re-entry operations and the Lapidoth rig has now been released. Although we had hoped to encounter producible hydrocarbons, we did not (other than minimal amounts of gas) and we will now work to finalize all remaining plugging and abandonment procedures for that well.”
Mr Carrillo also noted part of a scripture verse at the end of his announcement – Proverbs 24:16a “for though a righteous man falls seven times, he rises again …” That bit of scripture is defines Zion’s drilling efforts over the last nine years. I attended Zion’s first ‘spudding’ (beginning of drilling a well), the Ma’anit #1, in the Spring of 2005. Between 2005 and 2014 Zion has launched a total of six drilling operations, the last one concluding in January 2014. None of them successful.
I see a lot of Internet banter about Zion never drilling, only raising money, that just isn’t fact; Zion has launched six in-well operations in nine years. Yep, I agree, Zion always seems to be trying to raise money. I think it has had about as many offerings and follow-on offerings as it has unsuccessful wells. But that kind of makes sense, doesn’t it? Drilling wells is ridiculously expensive. Zion has never been financed by big money, deep pocketed investors; it has always been financed by regular folks (me included) who believe in Israel and believe in Zion’s vision. When I met John Brown in 2004, Zion Oil & Gas was a privately held company with not much money in the bank. John drove a used (I mean used) Oldsmobile and lived in a rented condo. Since 2004 Zion Oil & Gas has spent about $125 million exploring for oil in Israel (all money from us regular folk). The last time I saw John Brown he was driving a Ford pickup and living in the same condo. Whatever that $125 million got spent on, it wasn’t John Brown.
Oh yeah, I almost forgot – since I met John in 2004 commercial quantities of oil and gas have been discovered in Israel, onshore and offshore – just not by Zion Oil & Gas. So, like the scripture Mr. Carrillo alluded to, “for though a righteous man falls seven times, he rises again …”
What do you think? Should Zion stay down or rise again?