What happened to the Nord Stream pipelines?
#GS-02 International Relations
About Nord Stream pipeline:
Nord Stream is divided into two pipelines, which have two lines each.
- Nord Stream 1 runs from Vyborg in Leningrad (Russia) to Lubmin near Greifswald, Germany and was completed in 2011.
- Nord Stream 2 which runs from Ust-Luga in Leningrad to Lubmin and was completed in September 2021.
- The twin pipelines together have the capacity transport a combined total of 110 billion cubic metres (bcm) of gas a year to Europe for at least 50 years.
- The Nord Stream goes across the Exclusive Economic Zones (EEZs) of multiple countries such as Russia, Finland, Sweden, Denmark and Germany, and the territorial waters of Russia, Denmark, and Germany.
- In Germany, the pipeline connects to the OPAL (Baltic Sea Pipeline) and NEL (North European Pipeline) which further connects to the European grid.
- European countries rely on Russian energy for their cold winters, but now it has become evident that Russia could weaponize their dependency as a response to their sanction due to the conflict in Ukraine.
What is happening?
- Four leaks were reported at different points in the Nord Stream pipelines, linking Russia and Europe, since September 26.
- Two of the leaks were in Swedish waters while the other two were reported from Danish waters.
- The pipeline has been running at just 20% of its capacity since the Russia-Ukraine conflict began.
- According to Bloomberg, while 40% of Europe’s pipeline gas came from Russia before the war, the number now stands at just 9%.