The Danish Energy Agency has allowed Nord Stream 2 AG to use pipe-laying vessels with anchor positioning in the construction of the Nord Stream-2 gas pipeline in Danish territorial waters. This is stated in the official message of the department.
At the request of Nord Stream 2 AG, the Danish Energy Agency decided to change the conditions for the use of pipe-laying vessels equipped with dynamic positioning systems (DP), which are set out in the permit for the construction of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline issued by the Danish Energy Agency of Nord Stream 2 AG October 30, 2019, ”the report said.
The changes imply that the company can use anchor pipe layers either independently or together with pipe-laying vessels equipped with DP systems.
The Agency emphasized that the remainder of the pipeline, which is to be built on Danish territory, lies outside the area where trawling, anchorage and bottom work are not recommended due to the danger of flooded chemical warfare agents entering the marine environment.
Thus, the agency satisfied the request of Nord Stream 2 AG, filed June 5, 2020.
According to RIA Novosti, earlier Denmark prohibited the use of ships with anchor positioning, as they could touch unexploded ordnance on the bottom of the Baltic Sea.
The First Deputy Chairman of the State Duma Committee on Energy Igor Ananskih in an interview with RT noted that the decision of the Danish side greatly facilitates the completion of the gas pipeline.
“It is very pleasant that our Danish colleagues went forward and did not pull the rubber and come up with some reasons to delay the decision. I hope that the gas pipeline will be completed quite quickly. Because it remains literally a couple of hundred kilometers of the sea route, that is, you can finish the construction work quickly enough. Then our European consumers will be able to get gas cheaper than they get now, ”he said.
The leading expert of the National Energy Security Fund Igor Yushkov, in a conversation with RT, also called the agency’s decision important and positive for Russia, recalling that, with the old resolution, only vessels with a dynamic positioning system could be used.
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“Previously, only Academician Chersky could work. And in order to use the Fortuna pipe-laying barge, which now stands in the German port of Mukran, which is the supply point for Nord Stream 2, a permit with different parameters was needed, ”he explained.
The expert indicated that when filing the previous application, the technical characteristics of the Swiss company Allseas, which was operating at that moment, were indicated: all of its vessels were equipped with a dynamic positioning system.
“Then they imposed sanctions, the Swiss left and now Gazprom will be completed by the forces of Russian courts. Therefore, an additional application was filed in order to expand the characteristics and requirements for vessels that will operate in the Danish water area and allow the Fortuna vessel to enter there, ”he explained, adding that a positive decision by the Danish side will accelerate the completion of the gas pipeline.
Recall that Nord Stream 2 is a gas pipeline under construction that goes from Russia to Germany via the Baltic Sea. The pipeline passes through exclusive economic zones and territorial waters of five countries - Germany, Denmark, Russia, Finland and Sweden. Its construction is opposed by a number of European countries, which argue that the pipeline allegedly threatens the energy security of Europe, as well as the United States, promoting its liquefied natural gas in the EU. Russia has repeatedly stated that Nord Stream 2 is an exclusively commercial and not a political project.
At the end of December 2019, US President Donald Trump signed the country's defense budget for the new fiscal year, which provided for sanctions against Nord Stream 2. In this regard, the Swiss company Allseas, which conducted the laying of the gas pipeline, curtailed work, saying that it did not plan to return to the construction of this pipeline.
In addition, in early June, a bill was introduced in the US Senate that would clarify and expand existing sanctions against the pipeline.
As Bloomberg reported with reference to the draft document, restrictive measures will be applied to companies providing “underwriting, insurance or reinsurance services”, to vessels working on the pipeline, as well as to companies providing services or facilities for the modernization of technology or the installation of welding equipment at ships. In addition, sanctions will threaten ports that will be hosted by ships participating in the construction of the gas pipeline.
At the same time, at the end of June, members of the US House of Representatives introduced another bill on additional sanctions against the gas pipeline. This document, unlike the previous one, does not imply such severe sanctions against Nord Stream 2. The final version of the bill on restrictive measures against the gas pipeline has not yet been agreed.