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German Media: Berlin ‘Should Do Its Best’ to Stop Nord Stream 2 Dispute From Further Escalation

© REUTERS / HANNIBAL HANSCHKEThe landfall facility of the Baltic Sea pipeline Nord Stream 2 is pictured in Lubmin, Germany, September 10, 2020
The landfall facility of the Baltic Sea pipeline Nord Stream 2 is pictured in Lubmin, Germany, September 10, 2020 - Sputnik International, 1920, 28.12.2021
European and German regulators are yet to certify the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, which was completed in September and can start delivering fuel to Europe right after certification is issued. Moscow has touted Nord Stream 2 as a purely economic project that should not be politicised.
Germany may face power outages over insufficient gas supplies from Russia due to the possible disruption of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project, Handelsblatt columnist Jurgen Flauger has warned.
The author believes now that Germany “is pulling out of nuclear energy” and wants to end coal-fired power production, the country – “more than many other European nations” now needs gas in large quantities, and especially from Russia”.
“By the end of this decade, the coal phase-out should be completed and renewable energies should cover 80 percent of the electricity demand [in Germany]. But all this is only possible with the use of gas. Germany will only avoid blackouts if new gas-fired power plants are built on a large scale to operate when the wind isn't blowing or the sun isn't shining”, Flauger emphasised.
He suggested that if Nord Stream 2 is blocked, Moscow will start looking for sale markets in Asia, something that he argued is not in line with Berlin’s interests.
“Berlin should do everything it can to prevent the dispute over Nord Stream 2 from escalating further”, the author stressed, recalling that Russia delivered on its gas-related obligations with respect to Western customers even during the Cold War.
The remarks came a few days after Russian President Vladimir Putin underscored that the ongoing efforts to impede the launch of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline are foolish, since the delivery of additional gas to Europe would reduce prices for everyone, including Ukraine.
A Nord Stream 2 employee stands on a platform in the Nord Stream 2 Baltic Sea pipeline's receiving station, where six and a half million cubic meters of natural gas per hour will be processed and delivered to downstream pipelines at the right pressure, in Lubmin, Germany - Sputnik International, 1920, 26.09.2021
Alternative for Germany to Continue Supporting Nord Stream 2 After Election - Co-Chairman
Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov, for his part, accused the EU of turning Nord Stream 2 into a "bargaining chip" in its confrontation with Russia, with politicians in Brussels ready to pay out of their own pockets to "express solidarity" with Washington and annoy Moscow.
"It's sad, but this is a new generation of fanatics of their cause, which found the meaning of their own existence in the battle with Russia”, Ryabkov pointed out.
Ryabkov's comments followed warnings from German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock that Berlin might block the launch of the pipeline in the event of an escalation of the situation around Ukraine. Kiev and several Western countries have been accusing Moscow of planning “an invasion” of Ukraine, as it is amassing troops near the border with the latter. Moscow rejects the accusations and insists that the West wants to use them as an excuse to deploy NATO military equipment near the Russian border.

Nord Stream 2

A joint venture of Gazprom, Royal Dutch Shell, OMV, Engie, Uniper, and Wintershall, the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline is designed to carry natural gas from Russia to Germany under the Baltic Sea.
The already completed project is awaiting clearance from a German regulator before Russia can start exporting gas through the pipeline.
Construction of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline in Germany - Sputnik International, 1920, 21.07.2021
State Department: US Decided Not to Impede Nord Stream 2 Project to Avoid Alienating Germany
Washington previously imposed a number of sanctions on the project, arguing that once Nord Stream 2 is operational, Europe will become even more dependent on Russia's energy resources, something that will allegedly help Moscow gain political leverage.
Moscow has repeatedly underlined that the project is purely economic, and claimed that the way in which the White House opposes Nord Stream 2 is an example of unfair competition.
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