EU lawmakers demand probe into Baltic gas pipeline

EU

Plans to pump Russian gas under the Baltic Sea to Germany will not be delayed by a demand by European Union lawmakers for a fuller environmental impact assessment, the project’s EU affairs chief said on Tuesday.

The European Parliament endorsed by 542 votes to 60 a non-binding report calling for the European Commission to make a new investigation of the Nord Stream pipeline’s impact. Maartje van Putten, EU Affairs Representative for Nord Stream, told Reuters the vote would affect neither the speed or cost of the project. “The contracts for the most important parts have been signed already,” she said. “Everything is on track according to the decision process of the national authorities.”

The EU has already identified the Nord Stream pipeline, involving Russia’s Gazprom, and Germany’s E.ON and BASF, as a key project to ensure secure gas supplies for Europe. But it has been criticized in countries, such as Poland, Lithuania and Estonia, angered at being shut out of a key gas supply route, as well as Sweden on environmental grounds. (Reuters)

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