A new Gazprom plant is shipping its first liquefied natural gas cargo to Greece just 6 months after the EU vowed to drastically reduce Russian gas imports
- The first cargo from Russian state giant Gazprom's new LNG plant in Portovaya is heading to Greece.
- That's even though the EU has pledged to reduce the bloc's reliance on natural gas from Russia.
Following Russia's invasion of Ukraine, the European Union pledged to reduce the bloc's reliance on natural gas from Russia. But it appears new deals are still pushing through.
The first cargo from Russia's Portovaya liquefied natural gas, or LNG, plant, which is near the shut Nord Stream 1 pipeline, will be going to EU nation Greece, Bloomberg reported on Saturday, citing a person with direct knowledge of the situation.
The identity of the buyer and size of the cargo was not reported, but Greece has only one LNG facility that supplies the domestic market, as well as Bulgaria — also an EU country — and North Macedonia.
This is at odds with EU plans, rolled out in March, that aim to cut the bloc's dependency on Russian gas by two-thirds by the end of 2022 and end its reliance on Russian supplies of the fuel "well before 2030."
Europe depends on Russia for 40% of its natural-gas needs, such as cooking in homes and firing up power stations. It's fretting over a winter energy crisis, as Russia has reduced natural-gas flows to the continent, citing sanctions-related challenges.
Challenges abound, particularly in the short-term after Russia halted natural-gas supply via the key Nord Stream 1 pipeline. Europe is busy setting up LNG terminals to counter the energy crisis, as these facilities will turn the super-cooled fuel to gas.
Sweden, another EU nation, is also still importing Russian LNG. Last week, activists from Greenpeace Nordic protested Russian imports by blocking an LNG tanker from unloading Russian fuel in Sweden.
"The fact that Russian fossil gas is still allowed to flow into Sweden, more than six months after Putin began his invasion of Ukraine, is unacceptable," Karolina Carlsson, a campaign leader at Greenpeace Nordic, said in a statement on September 8.
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