The Danish Energy Agency gave Nord Stream 2 permission to use pipe-laying vessels with anchors for the remaining part of the pipelines to be constructed in Denmark.
The decision follows a request made by the operator of the pipeline earlier in June. The Danish Energy Agency recognised that the construction area is outside the one where bottom trawling, anchoring and seabed intervention are discouraged due to the risk posed by dumped chemical warfare agents.
In fact, according to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, Denmark is obliged to allow the construction of transit pipelines with respect for safety, resources and environment. Although pipelaying vessels with anchors have been assessed in the environmental impact assessment for Nord Stream 2, they were not covered by the October 2019 permit, hence the request by the operator.
Over the last few months, the Nord Stream 2 project has been again under scrutiny since Polish oil and gas company PGNiG was allowed to join a procedure in which the pipeline’s operator was seeking a derogation from the European Union’s Third Energy Package requirements. Early in May, Germany’s Federal Network Agency (Bundesnetzagentur), rejected such application as, in order to ask for a derogation, the gas interconnector should have been completed before 23 May 2019.
Furthermore, a group of US Senators have filed a new, bipartisan US sanctions legislation, called the Protecting Europe’s Energy Security Clarification Act, that will make it impossible to complete the controversial pipeline. The legislation follows last year’s passage of the Protecting Europe’s Energy Security Act (PEESA) as part of the annual US defence budget bill, which imposed sanctions on the use of deep-sea pipe-laying vessels to build Nord Stream 2.