The countdown begins for the end of the maintenance work with which the Gazprom gas consortium the closure of the gas supply through the Nord Stream 1last July 11. Officially, the deadline for the end of the works ends this Thursday morning, but it is still up in the air if the gas pipeline will return to normal. to work and, above all, with how much gas it will provide. to Germany, whose economy and industry remain highly dependent on Russian gas imports. Before the start of maintenance work, the gas pipeline was supplying 40% of its total capacity, according to data from the German Government.
“We assume that the gas will return to normal. to flow completely and that Russia will comply. with their contractual obligations & rdquor ;, Christiane Hoffmann, deputy spokesperson for the federal government said at a press conference this Wednesday. During the same appearance, another spokeswoman for the Federal Ministry of Economy – portfolio responsible for ensuring energy supply to the country – has pointed out that there is no technical reason why Nord Stream 1It will not work as before, which somehow pointed to a political will of the Kremlin to harm the German economy by closing the gas tap.
Turbine of discord
On Tuesday, the Russian president, Vladimir Putin, assured that his country wants to comply with the contracts signed with Germany and other European countries, but he also warned that while a turbine from Canada – where it was repaired – continue without reaching Russia, Gazprom will continue to without being able to increase the gas flow. The German government has today refused to answer if it knows the current whereabouts of that part.
Berlin considers the turbine argument to be a mere “pretext” of Moscow and rejects Putin's express request to start up the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, stopped by the Scholz government after the start of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Some members of the German tripartite government directly describe it as an “attempted blackmail” Gazprom's performance. Russia replies that the problems with the delivery of the turbine have to do with the sanctions applied by the West against its economy.
Dwindling dependencyGermanyIt is currently juggling to guarantee the supply of gas to homes and industry next winter: on the one hand, it demands that Moscow that it complies with the signed agreements, and on the other, it reduces to forced marches the energy dependency on Russian fossil imports. At the end of June, Russian gas consumption already accounted for only 26% of the total in Germany, as reported this Wednesday by the Federal Ministry of Economy.
Despite this waning dependency, the German government acknowledges that the country is still mired in an “acute energy crisis”. To avoid a possible industrial collapse next winter, Germany is building an infrastructure of maritime plants to be able to integrate the liquefied gas coming from the United States into its energy system. The reactivation of coal plants -a source discarded before the current crisis to reduce CO2 emissions- is another of the measures.