Preparations for construction of EUGAL in Brandenburg commence

Kassel-based pipeline network operator prepares regional planning application

Kassel. Europe’s future energy hub is taking shape. A core element of it will be the European gas pipeline link EUGAL, which is intended to run through Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, Brandenburg and Saxony. Construction of this pipeline means natural gas will be able to flow in all directions – from north to south and from west to east – and so cater for the growing demand in Germany and neighboring countries.

Brandenburg will play a particularly important role in that. A connection pipeline from there will link Poland and the Baltic States even more closely with the Northwest European pipeline system. A compressor station is also planned. The section in Brandenburg runs from Schönfeld (Uckermark district) southwards to Großthiemig (Elbe-Elster district). In order to minimize the space required for the section, which is around 275 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 Joint State Planning Department of Berlin-Brandenburg. The assessment framework and methods were discussed at the application conference in Königs Wusterhausen on June 7. The regional planning procedure will then begin in the fall with the publication of the planning documents in all municipalities involved. During this phase, the public too will have an opportunity to comment on the project.

"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.

EUGAL is the result of the Europe-wide survey more capacity, in which the need for new long-term transport capacities at the boundaries of the GASPOOL market area were ascertained in the fall of 2015. In some cases, the requested capacities – including in the Czech Republic and Poland – were considerably in excess of those that are technically possible at present.