"Nord Stream leak: West shores up pipeline security, blaming Russia 'sabotage'"

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European countries say they will ramp up security around oil and gas installations after the suspected sabotage of two major pipelines. The EU, US and Nato have suggested damage to the pipelines between Russia and Germany was deliberate, but have not blamed Russia directly. Russia has said it was not involved, and asked if the US was instead. Russia has previously been accused of using gas supplies as a weapon against the West over its support for Ukraine.

The leaks on the Nord Stream 1 and Nord Stream 2 pipelines were discovered on Monday and Tuesday. Neither pipeline was operating at the time, as the Nord Stream 2 project was abandoned when Russia invaded Ukraine, and Russia shut down Nord Stream 1 in September, citing a need for maintenance. But both pipelines were still full of gas, which bubbled to the surface in an area a kilometre wide on the sea's surface.
Seismologists reported underwater blasts before the leaks emerged. Denmark's Defence Command has released footage of the leaks which shows bubbles - the largest is 1km (0.6 miles) in diameter - at the surface of the Baltic Sea. "There is no doubt that these were explosions," said Bjorn Lund of Sweden's National Seismology Centre. Mike Fulwood, a senior research fellow at the independent Oxford Institute for Energy Studies told the BBC sabotage was, indeed, the most likely cause of the leaks.

"To rupture an offshore pipeline is a rare occurrence, so three in 18 hours would be a big coincidence," he said. If the sabotage was indeed committed by Russia, this was a "bizarre" move, he said, as it had already shut supplies off. He estimated that repairs could take between three and six months, as the damaged sections would need to be replaced. Similar damage to a different pipeline in the past took nine months.
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-63065943

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"Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but not their own facts." - Daniel Patrick Moynihan

Re: "Nord Stream leak: West shores up pipeline security, blaming Russia 'sabotage'"

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It’s telling that a rupture occurred and Russia didn’t open an investigation when asked if it was deliberate sabotage. Instead it facetiously asked if the US might be involved in the attack. Acknowledging in effect that this was no accident but an act of sabotage.

Desperate times for Russia.
"It is better to be violent, if there is violence in our hearts, than to put on the cloak of non-violence to cover impotence. There is hope for a violent man to become non-violent. There is no such hope for the impotent." -Gandhi

Re: "Nord Stream leak: West shores up pipeline security, blaming Russia 'sabotage'"

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Methane leaking from the damaged Nord Stream pipelines is likely to be the biggest burst of the potent greenhouse gas on record, by far. The Nord Stream pipeline leaks that were pumping huge volumes of methane into the Baltic Sea and atmosphere could discharge as much as five times as much of the potent greenhouse as was released by the Aliso Canyon disaster, the largest known terrestrial release of methane in U.S. history. It is also the equivalent of one third of Denmark’s total annual greenhouse gas emissions, a Danish official warned Wednesday. “Whoever ordered this should be prosecuted for war crimes and go to jail,” said Rob Jackson, a Stanford University climate scientist. Two scientists looked at the official worst case scenario estimates provided by the Danish government — 778 million cubic meters of gas — for The Associated Press. Jackson and David Hastings, a retired chemical oceanographer in Gainesville, Florida each calculated that would be an equivalent of roughly half a million metric tons of methane. The Aliso Canyon disaster released 90-100,000 metric tons.
Sabotage was suspected to have caused the leaks, and seismologists said Tuesday that explosions rattled the Baltic Sea before they were discovered. Some European officials and energy experts have said Russia is likely to blame since it directly benefits from higher energy prices and economic anxiety across Europe. But others cautioned against pointing fingers until investigators are able to determine what happened. Methane seen bubbling at the ocean surface was an indication of “a strong upward flow,” according to Paul Balcombe, a member of the engineering faculty at the department of chemical engineering at Imperial College London. The loss of pressure in the pipe likely meant a large amount of gas was already lost, he said. The impacts of the gas leak are still coming into focus, Balcombe said, but are likely to be significant. “It would have a very large environmental and climate impact indeed, even if it released a fraction of this,” he said.

Methane is a major contributor to climate change, responsible for a significant share of the climate disruption people are already experiencing. That is because it is 82.5 times more potent than carbon dioxide at absorbing the sun’s heat and warming the Earth. Böttzauw, told a press conference that the agency expects the gas to be out of the pipes, that run from Russia to Germany, by Sunday. “We believe that half the gas is out by now of one of the two pipes,” Böttzauw said. “We are talking about a huge spill of several million cubic meters of gas.”

The Danish agency statement added that its calculation was based on information from operators Nord Stream AG and Nord Stream 2 AG about the content of natural gas in the three pipelines that are leaking. The incidents come as the EU struggles to keep a lid on soaring gas and electricity prices. “As long as there is gas, it dangerous to be there,” Böttzauw said, declining to say when experts would be able to go down and see the pipes, which he said was made of 12-centimeter (5-inch) thick steel coated with concrete. They lie on the seabed between 70 and 90 meters (230 feet and 295 feet) deep. The leaks all were in international waters. Two were within the Danish exclusive economic zone while the third is in the Swedish equivalent.
https://apnews.com/article/denmark-balt ... 74bbda1128
"Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but not their own facts." - Daniel Patrick Moynihan

Re: "Nord Stream leak: West shores up pipeline security, blaming Russia 'sabotage'"

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NATO Formally Blames Sabotage for Nord Stream Pipeline Damage
https://archive.ph/6Ixg7
NATO said that a series of leaks on the Nord Stream pipelines between Russia and Europe were the result of acts of sabotage that would be met with a collective response from the military alliance.
The North Atlantic Council, which consists of representatives from all 30 NATO governments, didn’t name a culprit behind the Baltic Sea leaks, though officials in several alliance members have already attributed the destruction to Russia, without providing evidence. The council didn’t say how it arrived at its assessment that the damage, which it said has caused substantial environmental fallout and shipping disruptions, resulted from intentional attack. But it did say the military alliance would be prepared to defend its infrastructure from attacks by both foreign governments and individuals acting without explicit state backing.

“All currently available information indicates that this is the result of deliberate, reckless, and irresponsible acts of sabotage,” the council said. “We, as Allies, have committed to prepare for, deter and defend against the coercive use of energy and other hybrid tactics by state and non-state actors. Any deliberate attack against Allies’ critical infrastructure would be met with a united and determined response.”
https://archive.ph/6Ixg7#selection-279.0-505.421

European security officials on Monday and Tuesday observed Russian Navy support ships in the vicinity of leaks in the Nord Stream pipelines likely caused by underwater explosions, according two Western intelligence officials and one other source familiar with the matter. It’s unclear whether the ships had anything to do with those explosions, these sources and others said – but it’s one of the many factors that investigators will be looking into. Russian submarines were also observed not far from those areas last week, one of the intelligence officials said. Three US officials said that the US has no thorough explanation yet for what happened, days after the explosions appeared to cause three separate and simultaneous leaks in the two pipelines on Monday. Russian ships routinely operate in the area, according to one Danish military official, who emphasized that the presence of the ships doesn’t necessarily indicate that Russia caused the damage.
https://www.cnn.com/2022/09/28/politics ... index.html




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"Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but not their own facts." - Daniel Patrick Moynihan

Re: "Nord Stream leak: West shores up pipeline security, blaming Russia 'sabotage'"

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featureless wrote: Thu Sep 29, 2022 12:07 pm That's a big cow fart.

Where will this go, one wonders...
Nordic navies are keeping ships away from the leak areas. Since the pipelines were full I assume it's too risky now to patch them and who would do it and pay for it. If it was the Russians and it seems likely, I wonder if there are more explosives down there, that could be detonated if divers try to shut off the leaks. Russian vessels near the pipelines would appear normal, since it's their pipelines so they could have sabotaged other parts of the pipelines. Revenge for Finland and Sweden applying to NATO or just to cause general chaos in Western Europe? The NATO sec gen looks stressed.


Nord Stream isn't the only oil pipeline from Russia to Western Europe that could be sabotaged. Good question, I have no idea where this is going.


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"Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but not their own facts." - Daniel Patrick Moynihan

Re: "Nord Stream leak: West shores up pipeline security, blaming Russia 'sabotage'"

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FrontSight wrote: Wed Sep 28, 2022 5:30 pm I guess I haven't been following this. What does Russia gain by destroying two pipelines that are not in use?
I’m wondering the same. I thought the line was closed boycott and all. As for revenge for Finland joining NATO, don’t see that either. Why destroy your own pipeline and the pipeline has nothing to do with Finland except for Viipuri being an old Karelian city. Nothing to do with Finland and no real benefit to Russia except for a propaganda angle which seems rather iffy considering there is no sympathy from Europeans toward Russia at this point. So if we want to entertain fantasy it could just as well be NATO sabotaging it and claiming Russia did it for our political gains. Just as fanciful and just as likely. Just about every nation in Europe including the Baltic nations have the capability, but clearly the leverage Russia has is totally gone if it is responsible. Of course as noted perhaps it’s the USA making sure the Europeans don’t cave to Russian pressure.
https://asiatimes.com/2022/09/who-gains ... -sabotage/
Someone seems to have done it or perhaps it’s crappy Russian work, that seems to be favorite theme lately. Me, I have no idea and anyway I see it, it’s not my problem unless we are responsible.
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"Resistance is futile. You will be assimilated!" Loquacious of many. Texas Chapter Chief Cat Herder.

Re: "Nord Stream leak: West shores up pipeline security, blaming Russia 'sabotage'"

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I'm really hoping we didn't do it (don't really think we did). Putin does get 2 things out of it. Support for his conscription (those assholes blew up our pipes!) and takes the wind out of his oligarchs wanting sales to resume for their wallet padding. Or, maybe it's a warning that he can and will cripple the EU via infrastructure. I dunno. But I'm certain it won't cool things down...

Re: "Nord Stream leak: West shores up pipeline security, blaming Russia 'sabotage'"

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It is a mistake to view this act (and future Russian activities) as rational or measured by any cost/benefit ratio. Putin has not shown much restraint nor sanity in this war of aggression. He has gone all in on a losing hand. It is not beyond him to order the pipeline destroyed as simple retaliation against the EU (punching low at their Energy security where it hurts). He is losing both the war and public support in Russia since the unpopular draft. Rats are bailing the sinking ship (or being pushed down stairs). There is real danger that Putin will be willing to take the world down with him if he feels on the verge of losing power. This kind of action is historically the start of world wars. But nothing has been the same since the advent of ICBM’s.
Last edited by Bisbee on Thu Sep 29, 2022 4:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"It is better to be violent, if there is violence in our hearts, than to put on the cloak of non-violence to cover impotence. There is hope for a violent man to become non-violent. There is no such hope for the impotent." -Gandhi

Re: "Nord Stream leak: West shores up pipeline security, blaming Russia 'sabotage'"

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highdesert wrote: Thu Sep 29, 2022 1:52 pm
featureless wrote: Thu Sep 29, 2022 12:07 pm That's a big cow fart.

Where will this go, one wonders...
Nordic navies are keeping ships away from the leak areas. Since the pipelines were full I assume it's too risky now to patch them and who would do it and pay for it. If it was the Russians and it seems likely, I wonder if there are more explosives down there, that could be detonated if divers try to shut off the leaks. Russian vessels near the pipelines would appear normal, since it's their pipelines so they could have sabotaged other parts of the pipelines. Revenge for Finland and Sweden applying to NATO or just to cause general chaos in Western Europe? The NATO sec gen looks stressed.


Nord Stream isn't the only oil pipeline from Russia to Western Europe that could be sabotaged. Good question, I have no idea where this is going.


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If I was pointing fingers one could always suspect the Ukrainians or even Belarus. Now the main routes out go through their territory, meaning they are valuable to ensure Russia won’t do anything to those lines and if Europeans get fuel, so will they.
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"Resistance is futile. You will be assimilated!" Loquacious of many. Texas Chapter Chief Cat Herder.

Re: "Nord Stream leak: West shores up pipeline security, blaming Russia 'sabotage'"

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Bisbee wrote: Thu Sep 29, 2022 3:57 pm It is a mistake to view this act (and future Russian activities) as rational or measured by any cost/benefit ratio. Putin has not shown much restraint nor sanity in this war of aggression. He has gone all in on a losing hand. It is not beyond him to order the pipeline destroyed as simple retaliation against the EU (punching low at their Energy security where it hurts). He is losing both the war and public support in Russia since the unpopular draft. Rats are bailing the sinking ship (or being pushed down stairs). There is real danger that Putin will be willing to take the world down with him if he feels on the verge of losing power. This kind of action is historically the start of world wars. But nothing has been the same since the advent of ICBM’s.
That's my take on it too Bisbee. There is no solid proof right now that it's Russia or another state actor or a terrorist group, but Russian ships both civilian and navy have had access and opportunity. Yes, Putin's invasion of Ukraine wasn't rational and those paying the price are Russian citizens and now more young men are being drafted as fodder for his needless war. Nations play games just like politicians play games, just because they can.

This Carnegie Endowment article gives more perspective.
All summer, Europe had been bracing itself for an announcement in the ongoing energy crisis that finally came on September 2. Russia’s Gazprom stated that it had identified a defect in the last working turbine of the Nord Stream gas pipeline that carries Russian gas under the Baltic Sea to Germany. According to the company, the defect is impossible to repair due to Western sanctions, even though the government of Canada, where the maintenance is done, has specifically excluded the turbines from sanctions. That means that no more Russian gas will be delivered to Europe through Nord Stream for now, and the economic consequences for both Russia and Europe will be severe. The compressor turbines are complex mechanisms, and an accident causing an explosion and fire could be very serious, so regular servicing is of course essential. But Gazprom’s recent concerns over the turbines’ functioning are so numerous and poorly grounded that no one really doubts that the technical problems are just another excuse for Moscow to ramp up the pressure on Europe amid the two sides’ confrontation over the war in Ukraine.

Russia has been reducing gas supplies to Europe all summer, and the complete shutdown of Nord Stream is hardly unexpected. If anything, it had effectively been factored into global gas prices even before it happened. Russian officials and Gazprom representatives continue to insist that Germany could easily solve the problem by simply agreeing to certify the Nord Stream 2 pipeline and accept deliveries via it. That pipeline has stood idle since its completion in September last year: it was put under Western sanctions following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine before it was ever granted certification to start transporting gas. The Russian side had poured so much money into the pipeline’s construction in 2014–2021 that it has acquired a symbolic importance, but it would be a Pyrrhic victory now to force the Europeans to agree to its launch at long last. Germany could still revoke the certification for Nord Stream 2 at any moment, and would not even have to justify itself.
Besides, gas is Russia’s most powerful and effective means of applying pressure on Europe. It’s hard to imagine that Russia would play its strongest card in the current standoff with Europe merely to score an ephemeral point by launching Nord Stream 2. In any case, even if the pipeline were to be launched, it’s likely that in a few months, new reasons would emerge on the Russian side for limiting gas supplies to Europe: the government might just ban them outright. Russia will try to keep sending at least a certain amount of gas through one of its southern transport routes, however—either via Ukraine or the TurkStream pipeline—to supply its European allies in Serbia and Hungary.

It’s not just a difficult winter that lies ahead for Europe, but at least two or three difficult years. No major alternative gas sources are likely to appear on the global market before 2025, when several LNG plants are due to be completed in the United States. Any new projects in other countries will take even longer to come online. In the meantime, Europe will have to both invest more in energy-saving technology and alternative energy sources, and enter into contracts for gas deliveries from other countries on relatively unfavorable terms: both in terms of high prices, and also in terms of obligations to commit to long-term contracts.
https://carnegieendowment.org/politika/87837
"Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but not their own facts." - Daniel Patrick Moynihan

Re: "Nord Stream leak: West shores up pipeline security, blaming Russia 'sabotage'"

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None of this makes sense to me. It does make sense to me that we could do it to keep Europeans on our leash and ensure Russia can’t cut off supplies from Ukraine without hurting the few Allie’s it does have. Nord stream pipelines were directed right at Germany, the industrial heart of Western Europe. I’m being cynical, but it’s just as likely as Russia doing irrational things or actually perhaps logical in their minds. I don’t think the west has ever understood the working of the Russian psyche. Who ever did it, is following some logic that appears to rational to them. Doesn’t mean it will appear logical to someone else.
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"Resistance is futile. You will be assimilated!" Loquacious of many. Texas Chapter Chief Cat Herder.

Re: "Nord Stream leak: West shores up pipeline security, blaming Russia 'sabotage'"

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Bisbee wrote: Thu Sep 29, 2022 3:57 pm There is real danger that Putin will be willing to take the world down with him if he feels on the verge of losing power. This kind of action is historically the start of world wars. But nothing has been the same since the advent of ICBM’s.
This is my take. And I'm losing sleep over it. I find it so troubling it is very hard to discuss much.

If one wanted to start WWIII, cutting energy (even a shut down pipeline that could be reopened) to Europe just before winter isn't a bad route to go. I've read conflicting reports that Germany does/does not have reserves (in the tank or purchased) to get them through winter. I know they're not the only EU country getting squeezed. There were already nationalist movements surrounding immigration. Add in some freezing people and an energy poor economy and you're going to get additional political upheaval. What a crazy time we're living in.

Re: "Nord Stream leak: West shores up pipeline security, blaming Russia 'sabotage'"

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Nord Stream and Nord Stream 2 are natural gas pipelines from Russia to Germany that run mainly under the Baltic Sea. Germany uses a lot of natural gas for it's industries and Germany is the industrial engine for the EU, it's the largest economy. The EUs second largest economy is France and 70% of it's electricity comes from nuclear power. Europe has been pushing to end nuclear energy, but France has resisted and now they benefiting.
https://www.statista.com/statistics/270 ... countries/

The Druzhba pipelines are oil from Russia to various parts of Europe, as of four days ago the oil was still flowing but sporadically to European refineries. Yesterday Sweden announced they found a 4th leak in the Nord Stream pipelines. The more leaks the more shipping lanes in the Baltic Sea are disrupted and it ties down Nordic navies patrolling those areas.
"Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but not their own facts." - Daniel Patrick Moynihan

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