GASCADE to lodge application for new pipeline project through Saxony

Kassel-based pipeline network operator prepares regional planning application

Kassel. Demand for flexible transport capacities for natural gas continues to grow. First and foremost, additional transport structures are needed at the boundaries of the Gaspool market area which includes Saxony. The Europe-wide more capacity survey carried out by the pipeline network operators GASCADE Gastransport GmbH, Gasunie Deutschland Transport Services GmbH and ONTRAS Gastransport GmbH in summer 2015 revealed that there will be a need for additional transport capacity from 2019.

The Kassel-based company GASCADE is now reacting to this need with plans to extend its 2,400 kilometer natural gas pipeline network. In order to cope with future requirements, there are plans to build the European Gas Connecting Pipeline (EUGAL), a 485 kilometer pipeline which will run from the Baltic Sea to the German-Czech border.

"We need to ensure today that the network meets the needs of tomorrow. We know that transport routes need to be more flexible. For example, we need capacities in the west-east direction in order to supply the gas ordered by Poland and the Czech Republic. Expanding the network is the only way to cope with the major changes in the European gas market in the future," said Ludger Hümbs, the EUGAL Chief Project Manager, describing the requirements.

The section through Saxony will run from Großenhain in a southerly direction as far as the German-Czech border near Deutschneudorf. In order to minimize the space required for the section around 110 kilometers in length, the pipeline will be laid as close as possible to the OPAL natural gas pipeline which went into operation in 2011.

Preparations for the regional planning procedure are currently under way. The application will be handled by the state authorities in Saxony. During the application conferences in Dresden and Chemnitz on May 3 and 4, the assessment framework and the methods on which the plans will be based will first be determined. The regional planning procedure will then begin in the summer with the four-week publication of the planning documents in all municipalities involved. During this phase, the public too will have an opportunity to comment on the project.