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27 Oct, 2022 11:29

Berlin explains why Nord Stream 2 is unfit for gas supplies – Der Spiegel

The German government reportedly fears both strings of the pipeline may have been damaged by explosions in September
Berlin explains why Nord Stream 2 is unfit for gas supplies – Der Spiegel

German authorities doubt the Nord Stream 2 pipeline can be used for gas supplies following the explosions in September that fractured one of its strings, Der Spiegel reported on Thursday.

It is very likely that the act of sabotage with strong explosions has had a negative impact on both strings of the pipeline, so there is currently no technical capacity [to pump gas through it],” the government said in response to a parliamentary inquiry from the Alternative for Germany (AfD) party leader Leif-Erik Holm.

He suggested that the German government is hoping that “the issue of gas supplies via Nord Stream has been dealt with by the explosions.” Holm’s party strongly advocates the launch of Nord Stream 2 and is critical of the government's policy of distancing Germany from Russia in terms of energy.

Explosions at both Nord Stream pipelines took place at the end of September, with damage detected on both strings of Nord Steam 1 and one section of Nord Stream 2. In early October, Gazprom said it was working to stabilize pressure in the last surviving string by pumping gas through it, aiming to check its integrity and reduce potential environmental risks from possible gas leaks.

The capacity of the surviving line is 27.5 billion cubic meters annually, which is equivalent to 8% of the EU’s total gas imports, according to Russian President Vladimir Putin. As the string appeared not to have been punctured by the explosions, Putin suggested that Europe should allow it to be put into operation to resume gas supplies.

However, while Nord Stream 2 was finished over a year ago, it has never been put into operation. Berlin stopped the certification process before Russia launched its military operation in Ukraine.

An investigation into the explosions that damaged the Russian pipelines is still ongoing. Moscow denounced the incident as a terrorist attack while Germany, Denmark, and Sweden have not ruled out that it was targeted sabotage. The US claims no NATO country was involved.

For more stories on economy & finance visit RT's business section

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