New gas pipelines in Greece and Bulgaria ‘mean freedom’

Sofia, Bulgaria (AP) — The president of the European Union’s executive branch visited Bulgaria on Saturday to open up a natural gas link between Bulgaria and Greece, highlighting the EU’s determination to end its reliance on Russian energy imports. Did.

At a ceremony in Sofia, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen made the move as an important contribution to limiting the opportunities for Russia to use its gas and oil reserves to blackmail or punish the EU. Welcome to the pipeline.

“This pipeline will change the landscape of energy security in Europe. This project means freedom.

According to von der Leyen, the European Commission has pledged around 250 million euros to fund the project.

The Greece-Bulgaria Gas Interconnector Pipeline, completed in July, has grown in importance after Moscow decided to turn its natural gas supply into a political weapon.

When fuel flowed through Denmark and across the Baltic sea bed to a compressor station in northwestern Poland, the new Baltic Sea Pipe, built to carry gas from Norwegian North Sea deposits, was replaced by a second European pipeline. It started working on Saturday. It is expected to be full next year.

Officials from Poland, Denmark and Norway opened pipelines in northern Poland on Tuesday, underscoring their role in the region’s independence from Russian natural gas.

Russia has cut some of its gas supplies to Europe to show its opposition to EU-imposed sanctions over the war in Ukraine. Extraordinary leaks of the week Concerns over the protection of Europe’s energy supply have been exacerbated by two nodal stream pipelines carrying Russian gas to Germany.

In late April, Russia cut gas supplies to Bulgaria and Poland. This is because it refused Moscow’s request to pay in the Russian currency, the ruble. Relations between former Soviet bloc allies have soured in recent months over the war in Ukraine. Last month, Bulgaria ordered the expulsion of her 70 Russian diplomats, provoking an angry reaction from Moscow.

“People in Bulgaria and all over Europe are feeling the consequences of the Russian war. But thanks to projects like this, Europe will have enough gas in the winter,” said von der Leyen. Told. “Europe has everything it needs to free itself from its dependence on Russia. It is a matter of political will.

The 182-kilometer (115-mile) conduit connects the Trans-Adriatic pipeline from the city of Komotini in northeastern Greece to Stara Zagora in central Bulgaria. Initial plans call for a gas production capacity of 3 billion cubic meters per year, which he expects to expand to 5 billion cubic meters in the future.

Teodora Georgieva, the Bulgarian executive of the project, said the pipeline would help supply other countries in southeastern Europe.

“We have an opportunity to supply gas to the Western Balkans to ensure supplies to Moldova and Ukraine,” said Georgieva.

Planned since the early 2000s, the Baltic Pipe received the green light in 2016 under Poland’s current right-wing government, which wants the country to be completely independent from Russian energy sources.

The entire offshore route is approximately 275 km (170 miles) long. The expansion in Denmark will consist of approximately 210 kilometers (130 miles) of pipeline, a new compressor station and an expansion of the receiving terminal.

The project received financial support from the European Union.


Scislowska reported from Warsaw, Poland.


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