Russia is enabling the completing of the Nordstream II pipeline which the Kremlin believes will begin supplying natural gas from the Russian Federation to Germany in late 2021.
Last Friday, the Russian barge “Fortuna” began laying a 2.6 km section of the pipeline in the exclusive economic zone of Germany in waters at a depth of less than 30 meters. It is planned to complete work on this section by the end of the year. Then the construction of the last section of Nord Stream 2 will begin in the territorial waters of Denmark, reported Russian state news agency TASS.
“The speed (of construction’s completion – TASS) will depend on the technical capability of the vessels, which is still difficult to assess. Factors of weather conditions and logistic nuances also play a role. In theory, completion of construction by the end of the first quarter looks like a realistic goal,” department at Fitch Dmitry Marinchenko said.
It is possible that the construction of the remaining section may take up to six months, Director General of the National Energy Institute Sergey Pravosudov believes. The construction deadlines may be influenced by storms typical for the Baltic Sea in winter, and the lack of experience in implementing large infrastructure projects by Russian ships, analysts said.
“Earlier, very powerful ships were involved in the project, and these were originally designed for small projects. That is, Akademik Cherskiy (the vessel was named as one of the possible completers for Nord Stream 2 – TASS) was purchased to build small gas pipelines from fields on the shelf to the coast, it was not designed for global projects,” Pravosudov noted, added TASS.
The Trump administration had previously halted the project by threatening to impose sanctions on construction companies involved in laying the pipeline.
President Trump believes Germany, and Europe in general, hide behind the American defense umbrella while perfectly willing to cede their energy security to Moscow, the very adversary NATO is supposed to defend against.
Germany has called the issue a ‘matter of economics’ and not national security. Berlin has removed its nuclear power for ‘climate change’ reasons but now has to import hydrocarbons to supplant the last electricity generation capability.
In any event, the resolution of the U.S. Nov 3rd general election will be the deciding fact in how the European energy supply scenario plays out over the next decade.
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