Single line of Nord Stream 2 can still export gas, analysts say

The logo of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project is seen on a large diameter pipe at Chelyabinsk Pipe Rolling Plant owned by ChelPipe Group in Chelyabinsk, Russia February 26, 2020. Picture taken February 26, 2020. REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov
  • Nord Stream pipelines reported pressure loss
  • Europe is investigating the incident
  • Germany abandoned Nord Stream 2 project
  • Putin: Russia ready to export via Nord Stream 2

MOSCOW, Sept 28 (Reuters) - Russia could export gas to Europe through one of the idle Nord Stream 2 pipelines that was the only of Nord Stream's four lines still capable of working following a mysterious attack, analysts said on Wednesday.

Europe has been investigating what Germany, Denmark and Sweden have said were attacks which caused major leaks into the Baltic Sea from the two Russian gas pipelines at the centre of an energy standoff. The countries have not said who could be behind the attack. read more

President Vladimir Putin denied this month that Russia had anything to do with Europe's energy crisis, saying that if the European Union wanted more gas it should lift sanctions preventing the opening of the Nord Stream 2. read more

Nord Stream AG, the operator of the network, said on Tuesday that three of four offshore lines of the Nord Stream system sustained "unprecedented" damage in one day. Nord Stream's network had not delivered gas to Europe since August.

Nord Stream 1 reported a significant pressure drop caused by the gas leak on both lines of the gas pipeline, while Nord Stream 2 said that a sharp pressure drop in line A was registered.

That leaves only one line of Nord Stream 2, which has an annual capacity of 27.5 billion cubic metres, functional.

Alexei Grivach of the Moscow-based National Energy Security Fund said there was still working pressure in the pipeline, which still needs to be examined.

"If everything is right, it is capable of working provided there is a permit from regulators," he said.

Gazprom did not reply to a request for comment.

"Judging by the publicly available information, one line has been unscathed. In theory, in case of a political decision and by tuning in the gas processing equipment, supplies via the link are possible," said Igor Galaktionov of BCS Mir Investitsiy brokerage.

Germany halted the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project, designed to double the flow of Russian gas direct to the country, after Russia formally recognised two breakaway regions in eastern Ukraine, two days before Moscow started its military operation there. read more

The pipeline runs almost in parallel to Nord Stream 1, which started gas supplies in 2011. It was constructed in September 2021, but has never been launched.

Germany's Federal Network Agency suspended the certification process in November, saying Nord Stream 2 must register as a legal entity in Germany.

Reporting by Vladimir Soldatkin and Olesya Astakhova; editing by Guy Faulconbridge and Frank Jack Daniel

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.