Despite having shut down the operations of the Balticconnector gas pipeline, the Estonian and Finnish transmission system operators (TSOs), Elering and Gasgrid reassured that the security of supply in the region is guaranteed.
The Balticconnector, in commercial use since 1 January 2020 is a 152 kilometres bi-directional gas pipeline connecting Finland and Estonia (and thus connecting Finland with the rest of the continent) and has a transmission capacity of 7.2 million cubic metres (mcm) of gas per day.
Latvia’s TSO Conexus Baltic Grid has informed that the Latvian gas supply system is working smoothly and gas availability to system users is assured. Currently, the Inčukalns Underground Gas Storage has total reserves of 21.4 terawatt-hours (TWh), which is sufficient to supply Latvia during the winter period. Furthermore, the injection season at Inčukalns UGS will continue for this week as well.
Also, Elering has confirmed that the Estonian natural gas supplies will not be affected, as natural gas will be supplied from Inčukalns UGS. And Finnish consumers are supplied via the Inkoo LNG terminal.
The damage, which is currently under investigation, could be a gas leak that followed the severe storm that hit the Baltic Sea region during the weekend. NATO’s Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said that they are determined to prove if it was a deliberate attack, as reported by Reuters. The Finnish government said that there might be a potentially small increase in gas costs during the winter in Finland due to the leak, but it will not have a significant impact on electricity prices.