Spain Plans New Gas Pipeline to Connect France

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…As Europe struggles to wean itself off Russian gas

Spain has said that in nine months time another natural gas pipeline will become operational in Europe to connect Spain and France. 

Speaking to national TVE station last Friday, Spanish energy minister, Teresa Ribera assured that the new interconnection could be operating in about 8 or 9 months on the southern side, that is, from the Pyrenean to Spain.

In the relayed by Reuters, Teresa said Europe is working to wean itself off Russian gas amid growing tensions with Moscow and uncertain pipeline from Russia.

Apart from importing record volumes of from the United States, European countries look to build more infrastructure to accommodate more gas imports from sources other than Russia.

Spain itself does not depend on gas from Russia, but it has six import terminals and lies on the route of pipelines from North Africa to Europe. The country, however, is not well connected via pipelines to other European countries, limiting European access to LNG imports.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz had earlier last week discussed the idea of a gas pipeline to connect Portugal, Spain, and central Europe via France and said he supported the new connection. 

The Financial Times quoted Scholz: “I the case that we should really tackle such a project,” referring to talks he had held with the leaders of France, Spain, and Portugal, as well as European Commission Ursula von der Leyen. 

Since the Russian invasion of Ukraine, companies have also been studying plans for possible offshore pipeline connections from Spain to Italy. In May, energy infrastructure operator Snam of Italy signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Spanish energy and transmission system operator Enagas for a feasibility study on an offshore pipeline between Spain and Italy.

Snam and Enagas will jointly mandate a technical feasibility study aimed at the potential construction of an offshore pipeline connecting Spain with Italy, “which would be beneficial to further diversify energy towards our country as well as Europe,” the Italian company said.

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