The commissioning of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline designed to carry Russian gas via Baltic Sea to Europe might be postponed from 2019 to 2020, Russian media outlets have reported.
Interfax on Friday said that the project start-up could spill over from the designated late 2019 into 2020, due to delays with the permitting process in Denmark, one of the countries the pipeline is planned to go through.
Offshore Energy Today has reached out to Nord Stream AG, the operator of the project and a subsidiary of Russia’s Gazprom, seeking more info on the possible delays.
A Nord Stream AG spokesperson said: “The Nord Stream 2 pipeline can certainly be implemented within our timeline. Nord Stream 2 already has two pending applications with the Danish Energy Agency. Both permitting processes, which included consultations with the public and expert authorities, nationally and internationally, have shown that all technical and environmental prerequisites are fulfilled and a permit could be granted for either route.”
“Nord Stream 2 has been forced to apply as the Danish Energy Agency (DEA) decision of 26 March 2019 requests an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) and accompanying application for a third route (the South-Eastern route in the Danish Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ)) and noted that Nord Stream 2 would not receive any decision on the pending North-West route in the Danish EEZ application before applying for this third route.
“We do not agree with this decision inter alia taking into account the freedom to lay the pipes in the EEZ of a country as set out in UNCLOS 1982 which Denmark is a party to. As a prudent project developer, we must secure completion of Nord Stream 2 and therefore we have applied concurrently with filing the appeal to the Danish Energy Board of Appeal.
“The appeal claims that the decision of 26 March 2019 is illegal (in Danish ”ugyldig”). Consequently, the Decision must be annulled such that the DEA proceeds with the granting of a permit for the North-western route in the Danish EEZ for Nord Stream 2 without delay.”
Worth noting, Gazprom chief executive Alexei Miller was on Sunday quoted as saying that the project deadlines might be delayed “but in a very, very insignificant way.”
The entry point of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline into the Baltic Sea is the Ust-Luga area of the Leningrad Region in Russia. Then the pipeline, currently under construction, will stretch across the Baltic Sea. Its exit point in Germany will be in the Greifswald area close to the exit point of the first Nord Stream. The route covers over 1,200 kilometers.
Under the permits already granted in four countries, work on the Nord Stream 2 Pipeline is ongoing in Russia, Finland, Sweden, and Germany. By mid-April, a total of 1,000 kilometers of the contentious Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline had been laid in Finnish, Swedish, and German waters.
The operator said last Wednesday that more than 1,200 kilometers of the two lines – more than half of the total distance – had already been laid.
Offshore Energy Today Staff
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