Russia’s Gazprom keeps gas pipeline to Germany switched off
Europe's energy crisis loomed larger on Sept. 2 after Russian energy giant Gazprom said it couldn't resume the supply of natural gas through a major pipeline to Germany for now. The company cited what it said was a need for urgent maintenance work to repair key component- in an announcement made just hours before it had been due to restart deliveries.
The Russian state-run energy company had shut down the Nord Stream 1 pipeline on Wednesday for what it said would be three days of maintenance.
It said in a social media post Friday evening that it had identified "malfunctions" of a turbine and added that the pipeline would not work unless those were eliminated.
The move was the latest development in a saga in which Gazprom has advanced technical problems as the reason for reducing gas flows through Nord Stream 1 _ explanations that German officials have rejected as a cover for a political power play following Russia's invasion of Ukraine.
European utilities have scrambled to find additional supply during the summer months to get ready for the winter's heating demands, buying expensive liquefied gas that comes by ship, while additional supplies have come by pipeline from Norway and Azerbaijan.
Fears of a winter shortage have eased somewhat as storage has progressed, but a complete cutoff could present Europe with serious difficulties, analysts say. The European Union needs to step up efforts to reduce gas consumption, said energy policy expert Simone Tagliapietra at the Bruegel think tank in Brussels.
The continuing interruptions from Gazprom mean that "a winter with zero Russian gas is the central scenario for Europe." he said. "There is only one way to prepare for that: reducing gas and electricity demand."
Gazprom said it...
- Log in to post comments