What is the News?
In a development that could increase tensions between Russia and the US, Russian energy major Gazprom has said that it has resumed building the Nord Stream 2 pipeline.
Nord Stream 2 Pipeline:
- It is a 1,200km-long offshore natural gas pipeline being constructed from Russia to Germany across the Baltic Sea.
- The pipeline will run along with the already-completed Nord Stream 1 system, and the two together will supply an aggregate of 110 billion cubic metres of gas to Germany per year.
Benefits of the Pipeline:
- The pipeline is intended to provide Europe with a sustainable gas supply while providing Russia with more direct access to the European gas market.
- The proposed route for the pipeline uses the territorial waters and Exclusive Economic Zone(EEZ) of Finland, Sweden and Denmark which would benefit their national governments and local authorities through investments and employment generated due to it.
Why is the pipeline controversial?
- Criticism from US: The US has criticised the project as they believe that the project would increase Europe’s dependence on Russia for natural gas.Currently, EU countries already rely on Russia for 40% of their gas needs.
- Apprehensions by Ukraine: The pipeline has irked Ukraine as they believe that once the pipeline is completed, Russia could bypass the existing land pipeline between Russia and Europe that runs through Ukraine and deprive the country of lucrative transit fees.
- Opposition by some European Countries: France has expressed its opposition to the project as having some others in Eastern Europe countries. However, Germany has solidly stood behind the project insisting that it is a commercial project.
Source: Indian Express