Russia’s state energy giant completely shut down gas transmission on the Nord Stream 1 pipeline towards Western Europe citing equipment issues. In its statement, Gazprom provided no time frame for when supplies could be restarted.
The Russian energy company announced in advance that it will stop gas flows to Europe through its main pipeline from 31 August until 2 September due to routine maintenance.
However, gas deliveries through the pipeline were not resumed by the Russian side, citing alleged defects at the Potovaya compressor station. According to Germany’s Federal Network Agency, the defects alleged by the Russian side are not a technical reason for the cessation of operations.
Due to the increased precautionary measures in recent months, Germany is now better prepared for halted Russian supplies than it was a few months ago. Klaus Mueller, the head of Germany’s network regulatory agency said that for the time being, LNG terminals, storage levels and significant savings requirements are becoming more important.
German gas storage facilities are currently 85 per cent full despite decreased Russian gas imports. In June, Russia reduced flows through the Nord Stream 1 pipeline to 40 per cent of capacity, which then fell to 20 per cent in July.
Economy Minister Robert Habeck said that Germany should not rely on gas coming via the Nord Stream 1 pipeline over the winter. Berlin has announced that it will charter its fifth floating liquified natural gas (LNG) terminal in order to increase its LNG import capacity and to replace gas flows from Russia.