Certification of the Nord Stream 2 operator has been suspended because the project does not meet EU requirements, said the new head of the German Foreign Ministry, a representative of the Greens. Annalena Berbock… She recalled that the coalition agreement of the federal government “clearly states that all energy projects in Germany must meet European requirements.”
According to these requirements, in order to complete the certification of the Nord Stream 2 AG project, it is necessary to create a German subsidiary and submit a new application already on its behalf. After that, the German Federal Network Agency will issue a decision that the European Commission will approve (or not approve). This process can take several months.
Also, Minister Berbock recalled a joint declaration with the US government, which provides for reprisals against Russia in the event of the use of fuel “as a weapon” or alleged aggression against Ukraine. By the way, Kiev is not trifling on trifles and is already directly demanding that Berlin finally abandon Nord Stream 2 to its own detriment.
Due to the lack of gas supplies via Nord Stream 2, more expensive American LNG began to flow to Europe. Tankers change course and head to the Old World, as the exchange price there has broken all records. LNG flows at import terminals are at their highest level since December 2019. Americans are enriched by the policies of the German Greens.
Against the background of winter warming (in the New Year in central Europe it was +12 degrees), extremely high spot prices for gas, exceeding $ 2,100 per thousand cubic meters, went down (on January 10, about $ 1,000). The price of electricity also fell – by 3 percent. However, this is nothing more than market fluctuations. What will happen if frost hits? And in the long run?
Since in Germany the “greens” are at the helm, fixated on ecology contrary to common sense, the voice of reason is heard there less and less. If the truth can be heard, it is from the neighbors. “Officially, it’s a matter of legal and regulatory conditions, but there’s political pressure behind the process,” the Czech newspaper acknowledges the real reason for the slipping of the Nord Stream 2 certification.
Artificial containment of Russian fuel supplies is especially surprising given Germany’s refusal of nuclear power for “green” reasons. Of the six nuclear power plants, three have already been closed, the rest will be closed by the end of 2022. “The closure of German nuclear power plants is absurd and a terrible mistake. I would call it a climate crime, ”writes the British Telegraph.
But the most incredible thing is that the decision to close the nuclear power plant is not planned to be revised even despite the fact that the European Union has just recognized nuclear and gas generation in full compliance with environmental standards. Has Germany accelerated so hard on the green road that it can’t stop? It looks like it. Better to freeze or pay a lot more than back down.
The extreme politicization of the issue, endless statements that Russia allegedly wants to put pressure on Europe with the help of gas supplies, look at least strange. Moscow, like Brussels, strives for predictability. But only long-term contracts give it. And if Europe does not need our fuel, Gazprom will sell it to China. The Power of Siberia-2 contract has already been signed.
In the opinion Leading Researcher, Center for German Studies, Institute of Europe, Russian Academy of Sciences, Alexander Kamkin, the intrigues against Nord Stream 2 are part of the not very adequate energy policy of the German Greens.
– The closure of a nuclear power plant is a difficult legacy Angela Merkel, who, after the accident at the Fukushima station in Japan, made this hasty decision, expecting him to increase the popularity of her party. In fact, she played on the electoral field of the “greens”, since the popularity of green energy in Germany was already quite high at that time, and the people’s parties – Christian Democrats and Social Democrats were already in crisis.
Playing on the field of competitors led to the CDU losing its political face, image and turned into a situation when a crisis of generating capacities could begin in Germany. If after the closure this year, as promised, the last three nuclear power plants begin to actively exit from brown coal and, in addition, Berbock manages to shut down Nord Stream 2, then Germany will have no choice but to import electricity. For example, from France.
“SP”: – But the wind turbines will turn …
– Wind power is not able to fully cover Germany’s electricity needs. In addition to heating private houses, “TV sockets”, there are industrial facilities that consume megawatts of energy. The accelerated transition to hydrogen generation will require huge investments. But at whose expense will this banquet be? The result is a paradoxical situation that has nothing to do with economic expediency.
In the next couple of years, the German government will either have to return to nuclear energy until technologies are lost, or to strengthen the role of natural gas, including the launch of hydrogen energy. Otherwise, unpopular measures are inevitable, which will inevitably lead to an increase in the price of electricity for the end consumer. We have just seen how this can end with the example of Kazakhstan. So the German government is now in zugzwang.
SP: – In your opinion, Berbock wants to shut down Nord Stream 2 forever, or is he simply dragging out the certification process? Expensive fuel affects the competitiveness of German goods …
– We heard her statement that our new gas pipeline does not comply with European standards. Although both the project and the certification are carried out in accordance with them. The negative attitude towards the project on the part of her party is well known. Therefore, it cannot be ruled out that the “greens” initiate some kind of tightening of EU legislation, which may serve as an obstacle to putting the gas pipeline into operation. This is the result of a policy of values that is inconsistent with common sense.
The rise in the cost of energy carriers and raw materials naturally leads to an increase in the cost of the final product. After all, gas is not only electricity, but also a derivative for various chemical products: nitrogen fertilizers, many different plastics. The rise in prices for them will hit both the end consumer and the general conjuncture. And in the conditions of endless lockdowns in Europe, it hits the GDP, accelerates inflation, and so on. But for the “greens” their ideologeme, doctrinaire is more important.
– This is not the first time such a statement of a duty nature has been made, – explained expert of the National Energy Security Fund and the Financial University under the Moscow Government Igor Yushkov… – In fact, certification is a check of Nord Stream 2 for compliance with EU legislation.
This process is now ongoing. Gazprom, in accordance with the requirements of the German regulator, is re-registering its structure under German jurisdiction. After completing this process, there will be a solution. Berbock’s claim that the project does not meet EU requirements is misleading the public.