Germany inaugurates first LNG terminal
Germany's government has brought on stream its first LNG terminal, after constructing the facility in record time in order to bolster the country's energy security this winter after losing its Russian supply.
A floating storage and regasification unit (FSRU) is due to arrive at the terminal in Wilhelmshaven in mid-December. The construction of the onshore infrastructure for the FSRU, including a pier, pipelines and electricity lines, was completed in only six months.
“Germany is looking to Wilhelmshaven today. The new LNG terminal is a big step towards a secure energy supply,” the economy minister of Germany's Lower Saxony state, said in a statement.
The FSRU, built in 2018, is finishing a three-year deployment at the Chinese port of Tianjin. It is capable of regasifying 5.0-7.5bn m3 of LNG annually.
Germany has resorted to FSRUs as a means of securing alternative gas supply as quickly as possible. It expected to receive a second FSRU in late December, and a further three next year. The government's goal is to replace 50-60% of previous Russian gas supply with LNG in 2023.
Germany has been one of the European countries hardest hit by Russian gas supply cuts. Gazprom steadily reduced supplies to the country over the summer, citing technical problems caused by sanctions at the Nord Stream 1 pipeline. The pipeline has been rendered inoperable, at least for the year, following major leaks that occurred in late September that Danish and Swedish authorities have attributed to sabotage.