Ukraine will stop gas transit to Europe through the breakaway territories

Ukraine will be forced to stop the transit of gas from stations in the Luhansk region, which were temporarily occupied by Russia, from Wednesday, May 11, the operator of Ukraine’s gas transportation system has announced.

One third of the gas is transported to Europe at this point.

The operator of the gas transmission system stated that the force majeure situation makes it impossible to transport gas through the Szohranovka gas metering station and the Novopskov station. Novopskov is Ukraine’s first compressor station in the Luhansk region, through which almost a third of the gas, or up to 32.6 million cubic meters of Russian gas a day, flows to Europe from Russia.

As a result of the Russian war against Ukraine, a number of gas metering stations have been brought into the temporarily occupied territory, so the operator cannot exercise operational and technological control over these facilities. Communication.

Moreover, the interference of the occupying forces in technological processes, the change in the way the metering stations operate, including the unauthorized extraction of gas, has endangered the stability and security of the entire Ukrainian gas transmission system.

Said the operator.

Under the current transit contract, such acts are circumstances of force majeure which preclude the fulfillment of obligations at the Szohranovka and Novopskov stations.

In view of the above, the operator of the gas transmission system of Ukraine informs that no gas will be admitted to the Ukrainian gas transmission system at the Szohranovka junction from 07:00 on 11 May 2022.

– the operator stated that it would be possible to temporarily transfer capacity from the Sohranovka junction to the Sudan-controlled transit point in Ukraine in order to fully comply with its transit obligations to European partners and in accordance with the terms of the agreement.

The company said it had repeatedly warned Gazprom of the actions of the Russian occupying forces. They allege that these calls have been ignored.

According to the operator’s website, about fifty percent of natural gas arrives in Europe from Russia through this service provider.

Gazprom sees no obstacle

Gazprom has been notified by Ukraine of the interruption of gas transit through Ukraine’s Sohranivka system, but sees no obstacle to resuming transit, said Sergei Kupriyanov, the holding’s official spokesman.

Gazprom states that it has not received confirmation of the circumstances of force majeure, sees no obstacle to resuming work in the previous mode

– stressed Kuprijanov, adding that Gazprom was fully meeting its obligations to European consumers and was supplying gas for transit in accordance with the contract.

Until this point, Ukrainian specialists had been working quietly at the Sohranivka and Novopskov stations, transit was fully secured, “no complaints were received from partners,” a Gazprom spokesman concluded.

What will happen without Russian gas?

Europe is heavily dependent on Russian energy. Among other things, there has been a debate in the European Union for weeks about what to do with Russian oil. According to Adam Guibourgé-Czetwertyński, Poland’s Deputy Minister for Climate and Environment, the introduction of a gas embargo could be the next step. In his view, this is “a necessary sanction if we want to end this war”.

Russia has already halted gas exports to Poland and Bulgaria at the end of April. Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó said at the time that the natural gas supply to Hungary would nevertheless take place according to the contract, according to schedule and smoothly.

Meanwhile, German officials began to prepare for a sudden halt in Russian gas supplies. An emergency package is being put in place, which could include taking control of critical companies. Officials say details of the implementation of the plan are now being worked out.

However, there is a country with huge stockpiles whose pipelines even reach the European Union. And this is none other than Azerbaijan, which still supplies Bulgaria with up to three hundred million cubic meters of gas a year. Azerbaijan has been trying to become a major exporter in Europe for nearly two decades. The only question is what the gas that Azerbaijan has to offer is enough.

(Cover image: Gas pipelines in Ukraine. Photo: Sean Gallup / Getty Images)

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