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Balticconnector Damage Likely No Accident


The damage to the Balticconnector natural gas pipeline connecting Finland and Estonia and the damage to the adjacent telecom cables in October was unlikely an accident, as investigations found the anchor of the Hong-Kong registered vessels was dragged along the seabed for hundreds of kilometers, Hanno Pevkur, Estonian Minister of Defence, told Swedish broadcaster SVT.

  • “We are still in the investigation phase, but let’s be honest. If you have an anchor hanging loose for more than 100 nautical miles (185km), then it’s not very likely, it’s hard to believe it was just an accident,” Pevkur said.
  • “The captain understood that there was something wrong, so then the question we have to find out is whether it was on purpose,” he added.
  • The pipeline was shut down on 8 October and is scheduled to be re commissioned in April, following repairs.
  • As part of the repairs, Finnish operator Gasgrid said this week it aims to increase northbound transmission capacity of the pipeline. The pipeline will in the future get a base capacity of 70.5GWh/d of gas in the direction from Estonia to Finland, up from a previous 65GWh/d during summer months and 55-60GWh/d in winter, Gasgrid said. The increase in volumes could follow shortly after the repairs are done, Gasgrid said.

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