The Dead Sea - Jordan River segment of the East African Rift Valley, and in particular the area around the Dead Sea, has been a target for oil exploration for almost one hundred years. Although copious seepages of asphalt has been known from this area for more than 10,000 years, and several boreholes were drilled, no information was available on the presence and isotopic composition of hydrocarbon gases in the area which extends from the Sea of Galilee to the Dead Sea except for a single analysis on deep gas from the Zemah-1 drill hole. This is in contrast to the Rift area in Northern Israel, in which biogenic gas, formed in a Pleistocene section was found in semi-commercial quantities.


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