Nord Stream

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Nord Stream is a system of offshore natural gas pipelines from Russia to Germany. It includes two lines running from Vyborg to Greifswald forming original Nord Stream, and two lines under construction running from Ust-Luga to Greifswald termed Nord Stream 2. Nord Stream is owned and operated by Nord Stream AG, whose majority shareholder is the Russian state company Gazprom, and Nord Stream 2 is owned and will be operated by Nord Stream 2 AG, a wholly owned subsidiary of Gazprom.

The first line of Nord Stream (also known as Nord Stream 1)[1], agreed under Chancellor Gerhard Schröder in 2005, was laid by May 2011 and was inaugurated on 8 November 2011. The second line of Nord Stream was laid in 2011–2012 and was inaugurated on 8 October 2012. At 1,222 km (759 mi) in length, Nord Stream is the longest sub-sea pipeline in the world, surpassing the Langeled pipeline.[2]

Nord Stream 2

In 2011, Nord Stream AG started evaluation of an expansion project consisting of two additional lines (later named Nord Stream 2) to increase the overall annual capacity up to 110 billion m3 (3.9 trillion cu ft).

Laying Nord Stream 2 was carried out in 2018–2019, and before the imposition of US sanctions which halted the work, it was expected to become operational in mid-2020.[3]

Nord Stream has a total annual capacity of 55 billion cubic metres (1.9×1012 cu ft) of gas, and the addition of Nord Stream 2 is expected to double the capacity to a total of 110 billion cubic metres (3.9×1012 cu ft).[4][5][6]

Nord Stream projects have been opposed by the United States as well as several Central and Eastern European countries because of concerns that it would increase Russia's influence in the region. The US resistance of Nord Stream 2 is also influenced by the country's increased production of natural gas, which gives the US Congress economic incentive to resist the Russian supply of gas to the EU, in favour of US shale gas.[7]

In 2018 an abandoned drone for underwater demolition was found in proximity to the pipeline.[8][9]

On 21 December 2019, the construction company had suspended its Nord Stream 2 pipelay activities, anticipating NDAA of 2020, containing sanctions.[10][11][12] A Russian construction vessel continued the pipeline after months.

By the end of March 2021 warships, submarines, planes and fishing ships from different countries were entering the exclusion zone around the construction vessels, which is in effect for safety/security reasons.[13][14]


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