Nord Stream 2 filled with gas for the first time

Lubmin (dpa) – The first gas has been filled into the controversial Nord Stream 2 Baltic Sea pipeline. Nord Stream 2 AG announced that the filling of the first line began on Monday.

The first filling is necessary before the gas transport can begin. Nord Stream 2 AG did not provide any information about the planned time of the actual commissioning. Experts anticipate that gas could be delivered through the new pipeline in October. Gazprom plans to pump 5.6 billion cubic meters of gas through Nord Stream 2 before the end of this year contribute to the gas market in Europe. Wholesale prices for natural gas had risen sharply in recent months.

Requirements for operation are met

As the Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania Ministry of Energy announced on Monday, the necessary documents for the Commissioning of the pipeline. Finally, there was still a lack of independent reports, for example on leak tightness. The competent Danish authority also announced on Monday that the requirements for operating a line were met.

According to the Federal Network Agency, a certification process for Nord Stream 2 is still in progress Nord Stream 2 AG to be recognized as an independent transport network operator in accordance with an EU directive. Should Nord Stream 2 start transporting gas before this process is completed, the Bonn authority could initiate administrative offense proceedings and impose fines. The authority has until the beginning of January to make a decision. Nord Stream 2 AG was asked on Monday to comply with the conditions applicable in Germany.

Through the 1230 kilometer long pipeline that has two strands , are to be delivered annually 55 billion cubic meters of gas. According to the operating company 26, millions of households can be supplied with it. Gazprom announced more than three weeks ago that the pipeline was completed.

USA sticks to criticism

Above all the resistance of the USA, which threatened sanctions and also imposed, delayed construction, which 2018 had started and 2019 should have been finished. The US government criticizes that the pipeline makes Europe too dependent on Russia for its energy supply. Critics see the danger that Russia could misuse the pipeline for geopolitical purposes because it would make itself more independent of Ukraine as an important transit country. A German-American agreement stipulates that Russia will be subject to sanctions if the pipeline is used as a geopolitical «weapon». Moscow rejected this.

The pipeline was financed half by the Russian energy giant Gazprom and half by the five companies OMV, Wintershall Dea, Engie, Uniper and Shell and cost the investors more than ten billion euros.

The Nord Stream 1 pipeline, which runs largely in parallel, has been partially in operation since 2011 and fully since 2012. 2020 According to the operator 59, 2 billion cubic meters of natural gas were transported with it.

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