The risks of German unilateralism on Nord Stream 2

Gazprom CEO Alexei Miller with parts of the future Nord Stream 2 pipeline
Gazprom CEO Alexei Miller visits the Chelyabinsk pipe-rolling plant where components of the highly controversial Nord Stream 2 pipeline are being made (source: dpa)
  • There are deep divisions in the EU over the Nord Stream 2 pipeline
  • Many question its geopolitical motivations and whether it is even needed
  • Germany’s support for the project has disregarded other EU members’ concerns
  • This unilateralism could deepen rifts within the bloc

There is no more controversial energy project in the European Union than the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline. The initiative would put two new lines alongside the two in Nord Stream 1, which began operation in 2011. The dispute between supporters and opponents of the pipeline is intertwined with the EU’s relationship with Russia.

The pipeline’s route – from Russia’s Leningrad Oblast under the Baltic Sea to Greifswald in Germany – is based on permission granted for Nord Stream 1. However, the political and regulatory environment has changed considerably since 2010, when construction on Nord Stream 1 began.

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