Part of a key pipeline transporting natural gas from Russia to Europe suddenly reversed its flow direction Tuesday, Reuters reported.
Flows in the Yamal-Europe pipeline, which sends natural gas to Germany via Poland, were recorded going eastward away from Europe on Tuesday morning, data from the European firm Gascade showed, Reuters reported, citing data from German network operator Gascade. Flows leaving Germany were moving at a whopping 4.3 million kilowatt-hours per hour at one section of the pipeline.
The flow of natural gas through a key Russian-controlled pipeline suddenly stopped Wednesday as tensions continue to increase between Russia and the West.
The Yamal-Europe pipeline’s liquified natural gas (LNG) flows, which are operated by Russian state-run firm Gazprom and have usually been pumped westward from Russia to Germany through Poland, were halted early Wednesday, European data showed, according to Reuters. The sudden stoppage reportedly represented a setback after leaders expected the pipeline to return to its normal flow pattern.
In December 2021, Gazprom slowed the pipeline’s gas flows, which represent 10% of the region’s supply, and the company reversed the flow direction from westward to eastward. The sudden reversal sent natural gas prices, which had already spiked amid a European energy crisis, even higher.