Russian gas pipeline leaks, Baltic Sea bubbling

Strange things are happening with the Nord Stream 1 and 2 pipelines, which are supposed to carry gas from Russia to Europe. These gas pipelines are currently not in use, but it is anticipated that they will be sabotaged because they are full.

Attempts at sabotage, or a string of very strange accidents? The question is being asked because there have been reports of gas leaks in the Baltic Sea that have affected two major gas pipelines that link Russia and Germany. On Monday, the first sign of a leak in Nord Stream 2 was discovered. Authorities in Denmark and Sweden, two countries that host in their seabed these gas pipelines majority owned by the Russian giant Gazprom, reported on Tuesday that the parallel Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline was in turn affected by two very rare gas leaks. The leaks occurred on Tuesday. Images captured by the Danish military off the coast of the island of Bornholm show a massive bubbling feature that ranges from 200 to 1,000 meters in diameter.

The city of Copenhagen immediately activated its orange alert for its energy infrastructure, while also taking into consideration that it was “too soon to speculate on the factors that led to the occurrence of these events simultaneously. According to him, it is “hard to imagine” that the three leaks that occurred simultaneously on the Nord Stream 1 and 2 submarine gas pipelines in the Baltic Sea are related “Tuesday, the Prime Minister of Denmark stated that the incident was “accidental,” but he did not “exclude” the possibility of sabotage. The operator of the pipeline, which is a consortium called Nord Stream, stated that it was unable to see or assess the damage, but it did acknowledge the extraordinary nature of the situation. “A spokesperson for the company told AFP that it is not a typical occurrence for three pipes to simultaneously experience difficulties on the same day.

The companies operating in this sector are going to take actionable steps to improve the occupational safety of their factories and other facilities. The Danish maritime authority also specified that the leak that was discovered approximately twenty kilometers to the south-east of the Danish island of Bornholm, just outside territorial waters, was “dangerous for maritime traffic,” and it prohibited navigation within five nautical miles (nine kilometers) of the leak area.

The sabotage theory in its entirety

The two pipelines, which have been the focus of geopolitical maneuvering in recent months, are currently inoperable as a direct result of the fallout from the conflict in Ukraine. Even though its construction was finished in the early years of 2022, the Nord Stream 2 pipeline was never put into operation. Gazprom suspended operations of its twin pipeline, Nord Stream 1, at the beginning of September. The company halted deliveries of natural gas, citing a variety of reasons, including technical issues. However, there is gas coming out of both pipes. The unexpected occurrence of these incidents gives rise to concerns about possible sabotage. A theory that is being considered by the member states of the EU, and one that asserts that the Kremlin has taken control on its side.

The director of the Danish Energy Agency, Kristoffer Bottzauw, who promises “in-depth monitoring of Denmark's critical infrastructure,” stated that “gas pipeline leaks are extremely rare and as a result, we see a reason to increase the level of vigilance following the incidents we have witnessed over the past 24 hours.” Bottzauw explained that “gas pipeline leaks are extremely rare and as a result, we see a reason to increase the level of vigilance following the incidents we have witnessed over the past 24 hours According to an estimate from a close friend of the German government that was published in the German newspaper Tagesspiegel, “Everything points to there not being a coincidence. We cannot imagine a scenario that is not a targeted attack. For his part, the spokesman for the Kremlin, Dmitry Peskov, stated that the Kremlin is experiencing “extreme concern” regarding these new reports. When asked about the possibility of sabotage, he responded that “No option can be ruled out.”

Check out this related article on Russian gas: will it be enough to get Europe through the winter?

In recent months, the massive Russian gas company Gazprom had significantly cut back on its gas deliveries to Germany through this gas pipeline, and eventually, it stopped those deliveries entirely. Before the war, Germany obtained 55% of its supplies from Russia. As a result of the war, Germany must now obtain its supplies from other countries at significantly higher prices. According to a spokesman for the government, there has been no gas transported through the Nord Stream pipeline since the beginning of September, so the recent incidents will not have any effect on the supply of gas.

On Tuesday, the Prime Minister of Denmark will, along with her counterparts in Norway and Poland, officially open the Baltic Pipe. The Baltic Pipe is a gas pipeline that connects Poland and Norway and travels through the territory and waters of the Scandinavian country of Denmark.

Read more about Ukraine here: Western nations impose their first round of sanctions, and Germany decides to obstruct the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline.

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