Russia to further reduce Nord Stream 1 supply due to overhaul of another turbine

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Federal Network Agency sees ‘insufficient technical reasons’ to restrict supply

Russian gas company Gazprom has reported that, as of Wednesday, it will halve the current supply through the Nord Stream 1 pipeline alluding to the overhaul of a new turbine, as already happened weeks ago.

The pipeline currently operates at 40 percent of its capacity, whereupon from Wednesday it will be reduced to 20 percent, which means about 33 million cubic meters of gas per day, as reported by the Russian news agency TASS.

Gazprom has justified its decision on the condition of a turbine at the Portovaya gas compressor station, which requires overhaul according to the standards of the Federal Service for Environmental, Technological and Nuclear Supervision.

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This step was already advanced by Russian President Vladimir Putin, who last week warned that by the end of July another turbine on Nord Stream 1, which links Russia and Germany via the Baltic Sea, should be repaired.

For its part, the Federal Network Agency, the government body in charge of gas supplies, among other matters, has criticized the measure as it sees no “technical reasons” for gas supplies to be reduced.

“According to our information, there is no technical reason for a reduction in deliveries,” said a spokesman for the Ministry of Economy, while a spokesman for the aforementioned agency has pointed out that the body “has taken note” of the Russian decision.

For weeks now the pipeline has been yielding at 40 percent of its capacities due to, according to Russia, the absence of a broken turbine that was sent to Canada for repair and whose return to Germany was delayed as a result of sanctions imposed by Ottawa on Moscow in response to the invasion of Ukraine.

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Finally, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau confirmed that the part had been returned to Germany, a move that was criticized by Ukrainian authorities as they see in this gesture a weakness in the frontal response to Russia for its operation in Ukraine.

However, Gazprom announced last week that it had not yet received the turbine, recalling that this part “directly affects the safe operation of the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline.”

In this regard, the head of the Federal Network Agency, Kalus Muller, warned that Germany is “at the mercy of Russia” because it is Moscow that decides how much gas passes through Nord Stream 1, according to DPA.

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