The changes proposed by the European Commission in the Gas Directive are a threat to the EU’s energy security, according to the non-profit organisation Eurogas.
An opinion published on the organization’s website states that requiring all gas pipelines – both new and existing – to comply with all European rules in the sector, jeopardizes the supply of gas from Africa and the implementation of projects such as EastMed, which the main objective is to diversify the sources and routes of natural gas in Europe.
The organization states that the new rules only benefit the LNG sector and this is a violation of the principles of equality and competition in supply. This is also a threat to the EU’s energy security.
“Changes may also threaten community relations with third countries”, says the analyze of Eurogas.
Most of the gas pipelines in the EU operate after a derogation, which is an exception to European rules.
A retroactive measure to revise the conditions offered by the revision of the directive will disrupt the interests of both gas suppliers and consumers in Europe.
At the beginning of November 2017, the EC presented its idea of changes in the Gas Directive, one of the main objectives seen by analysts was blocking Russian gas pipelines in the community, especially the expansion of Nord Stream. According to Eurogas, however, change is not in the interest of the Union.
Re-agreeing of gas pipeline conditions poses risks because it may not be successful for the community and European gas market participants, according to the branch organization. Their position recalls that there are currently many gas connections both in the EU and with third countries – Algeria, Norway, Libya, Tunisia and Russia. After Brexit outside the community will also be the gas pipelines with the UK.
Even without the new restrictions, it takes years to implement gas pipeline projects – to find funding, get political and legislative permissions. With the changes to the directive, investments in such projects will be reduced and new gas pipelines will not be built at all.
The statement or Eurogas also notes that the proposed changes to the directive will violate the right of European members to decide the structure of their energy mix themselves.
The organization criticizes the deadline that Brussels gave for opinions on the proposed changes to the Gas Directive. The affected countries have a deadline from December 6, 2017 to January 31, 2018. However, due to the holiday days at the end of the year, this period is insufficient to express an opinion.