With Gazprom's Nord Stream 2, Putin prepares to place his finger on Europe

Overseas coverage

The brand new pipeline is not going to assure vitality safety. This may make the EU extra depending on a capricious Russia.

By Mikhail Korchemkin | October 7, 2019, 6:24 pm

There’s something Orwellian in regards to the Nord Stream 2 fuel pipeline venture of Russian vitality large Gazprom, which can transport Russia's pure fuel to Europe through the Baltic Sea and Germany. The official cause for the venture is that Europe wants extra fuel, and that 's one of the simplest ways to get it. This pipeline, mixed with different deliberate tasks, will truly scale back Russia's export capability. And even when Nord Stream 2 guarantees "better diversification of vitality routes in Europe", it’ll focus Russian fuel exports on a single pipeline hall within the Baltic Sea, the place it’ll bypass Ukraine and scale back the burden of vitality. fuel from that nation to 10% of present capability.

It appears unusual that European leaders, involved in regards to the vitality safety and financial well being of their accomplice, Ukraine, welcome the Nord Stream 2 pipeline. However at the least some European politicians are snug with the guarantees of the Kremlin that the venture is not going to hurt Ukrainian pursuits. They shouldn’t be. Russian President Vladimir Putin has already used Gazprom fuel pipelines to harm Europe and Ukraine, and he’ll in all probability accomplish that once more.

The institution of an extra pipeline would typically imply a rise in fuel provide, however provided that the previous pipeline routes should not destroyed. And sadly for European fuel customers, Gazprom is planning to decommission export pipelines with a mixed capability a number of occasions better than that of Nord Stream 2. Specifically, it goals at fuel pipelines linked to Ukraine, which permit it to to export 146 billion cubes. meters of fuel per yr. Based on Gazprom's "optimization program", the corporate will scale back the capability of fuel pipelines carrying fuel on the Russian-Ukrainian border from 10 to 15 billion cubic meters per yr.

In different phrases, after the completion of Nord Stream 2, the overall Russian fuel export capability to Europe will lower to about 85 billion cubic meters per yr. Already, in accordance with the December 2018 concern of Gazprom company journal, the corporate has decommissioned three compressor retailers that present the mandatory stress to route fuel by pipeline and is engaged on 4 others. The plan requires the liquidation of greater than 2,600 km of pipelines and 62 compressor crops.

Since Nord Stream 2 will consolidate Russian exports on a single route, Europe may also be extra susceptible to stockouts, whether or not brought on by a disaster or by Putin's vagaries.

Full article right here.

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