Russian Gazprom announces a further reduction in gas flow through the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline

Russia’s state-owned energy company Gazprom said it will have to further reduce gas flow through the Nord Stream 1 pipeline on Wednesday as it shuts down another turbine for repair.

It comes days after Gazprom resumed gas shipments through the Nord Stream 1 pipeline, a vital artery linking Russia’s vast gas reserves to Europe via Germany. The pipeline had been shut down for 10 days for scheduled maintenance, and many feared Russia would not resume deliveries once the work was completed.

“Due to the expiration of the prescribed period before the overhaul (in accordance with the notification of Rostekhnadzor and taking into account the technical condition of the affected machine), Gazprom shuts down another gas turbine produced by Siemens in Portovaya [compressor station]”, the company said in a statement on Monday.

“The daily throughput of the Portovaya CS from 07:00 (Moscow time) on July 27 will reach 33 million cubic meters,” the statement added.

The head of the German gas regulator, Klaus Muller, confirmed the decision in a tweet on Monday.

“According to our information, there is no technical reason for a reduction in gas deliveries via Nord Stream 1,” insisted the German Ministry of Economy in a tweet on Monday.

“If Russian gas deliveries via Nord Stream 1 continue at this low level, a storage level of 95% by November is hardly achievable without additional measures,” the German Gas and Regulatory Office said on Monday. electricity in a press release.

The country’s economy minister, Robert Habeck, had previously called on the Germans to reduce their gas consumption in order to fill gas storage facilities as much as possible for the winter.

Germany’s current total gas stocks stand at 65.9%, according to daily figures provided by the government.

The reduction of gas through the Nord Stream 1 pipeline will also affect the transfer of gas to other European countries such as France, Austria and the Czech Republic.

Wholesale prices have increased significantly due to reduced gas supply and have recently stabilized at a higher level, the German regulator said, warning that “businesses and private consumers should be prepared at dramatically high gas prices”.

The Nord Stream 1 pipeline delivers 55 billion cubic meters of gas per year, nearly 40% of the bloc’s total pipeline imports from Russia.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Pesko said on Monday that a repaired gas turbine for the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline will be installed after all technical procedures have been completed, after which the flow of gas to Europe will resume “in the as far as it is technologically possible”.

Peskov insisted that gas supply problems have nothing to do with politics.

“There are no politics here. These are the consequences of the restrictions that the Europeans themselves have introduced, and the Europeans themselves are suffering from these restrictions,” he said, adding that Russia does not want Europe to give up Russian gas.

Moscow will continue to be a “reliable gas supplier”, he said.

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James C. Tibbs