Where the EU gets its natural gas

  • Russia has fueled the energy crisis in Europe by reducing the capacity of the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline by 20%
  • But the continent also receives gas supplies from Azerbaijan, North Africa and the North Sea.
  • Many countries also import gas by ship, which passes through liquefied natural gas ports.

Russia is choking off Europe’s natural gas supply in a bid to retaliate against Western sanctions.

It cut the capacity of the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline to Germany to just 20% last month, contributing to the continent’s energy crisis.

Major gas benchmarks have soared since early June, with Dutch TTF natural gas futures jumping 129% to 194 euros ($198) per megawatt hour.

“Gas prices in Europe are climbing again, approaching record highs, due to Nord Stream 1 flows dropping to just 20% of capacity due to ongoing maintenance,” said the energy analyst from Rystad, Karolina Siemieniuk, in a recent research note. “If Russian flows stop completely, which is not excluded, prices will skyrocket further.”

But Nord Stream 1 is not the only pipeline that supplies Europe with natural gas.

Gas fields in Azerbaijan, the North Sea and North Africa are also key energy sources for the continent.

Many European countries also import liquefied natural gas by ship – and the United States now sends more supercooled gas by ship than Russia by pipeline.

Russia has the capacity to ship gas to Germany at 1.76 million gigawatt hours per day, according to the European Network of Gas Transmission System Operators. Major routes include the Gazela Pipeline, which runs through the Czech Republic, and the Yamal-Europe Pipeline which connects Western Siberia to Germany.

But the European Union has also been working on initiatives to reduce its dependence on Russian gas. The Trans-Anatolian and Trans Adriatic gas pipelines, completed in 2018 and 2020 respectively, supply gas from Azerbaijan’s Shah Deniz gas field to Greece, Italy and Turkey.

The EU also imports gas from the North Sea gas fields, which are the territory of Norway and the United Kingdom. Belgium, France, Germany, the Netherlands and Ireland all receive gas through networks including Europipe-II and the Forties pipeline network.

Finally, Italy and Spain both import gas from key sites in North Africa, including the Algerian gas hub of Hassi R’Mel.

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