In Sicily, EniMed manages the production and processing of liquid and gaseous hydrocarbons. Eni's has had a presence there since the mid-1950s, with the discovery of the giant oil field at Gela and with the so-called minor ones at Pontedirillo and Cammarata Pozzillo. In the same period the gas fields of Gagliano and Bronte were discovered. In 1966, the Ragusa field was acquired and more recently, in the 1980s, the Perla and Prezioso offshore fields were discovered and put into production. EniMed's operational activity in Sicily for the exploration and production of hydrocarbons is managed by the Gela Management Centre, which oversees the operations of 4 Oil Plants, 3 Onshore Platforms and 3 Gas Plants.
One of the most important new projects among those envisaged by the 2014 memorandum of understanding, is that of developing the gas fields of Argo-Cassiopea and is in line with Eni's strategy of promoting natural gas as a low-emission energy source. In 2020 the activities provide the transportation of natural gas produced by offshore wells through a subsea pipeline to a new onshore treatment and compression plant, that will be realized in certain reclaimed area of the Gela Refinery and the sustainable development initiatives supported by local institutions. In particular, the Macchitella Lab project was launched to support youth employment and small and medium-sized local enterprises with the start-up of the redevelopment programs.
We started the construction of the treatment plant for gas in September 2021. The project, one of the most significant under the 2014 Memorandum of Understanding for the Gela area, is in line with Eni's strategy of exploiting natural gas as a low-emission energy source. Construction, installation and commissioning will take almost three years, with an investment of over 700 million euros. Gas production is expected to begin in the first half of 2024. The project, through a significant reduction of the environmental impact, expects to achieve the carbon neutrality target. Within the local support communities’ initiatives, the final framework agreement was ratified with Fondazione Banco Alimentare Onlus, Banco Alimentare della Sicilia Onlus and the Municipality of di Gela to create a food storage and distribution center for disadvantaged communities.