Leak Found in Prominent Pipeline in Poland
(ConservativeHub.com) – A major pipeline making its way through Poland on its way from Russia to Germany recently developed a leak. The discovery comes on the heels of suspected sabotage resulting in three underwater breaches in the Nord Stream pipelines off Denmark’s island, Bornholm, in the Baltic Sea. Yet, while officials in Denmark and Sweden suspect foul play in that incident, Poland doesn’t believe that’s the case for the Druzhba pipeline.
The Druzhba, which means friendship in Russian, is one of the world’s largest pipelines, transporting crude oil from Russia to several parts of Europe, including Belarus, Ukraine, Poland, Germany, Hungary, Austria, the Czech Republic, and Slovakia. On October 12, Germany noted a slowdown in the oil supply from Druzhba but claimed it still had enough supply to meet current refining needs. The reduction came after Polish pipeline operator PERN announced it discovered a leak in the middle of a cornfield.
According to The Associated Press, Stanislaw Zaryn, a security official within the Polish government, said investigators were looking into all possible causes for the rupture, including an accident. He indicated they were letting the evidence lead them and leaving the options open. Brigadier Karol Kierzkowski, a firefighter spokesman, reportedly told TVP Info that emergency personnel worked to find the exact location of the breach. Firefighters said they pumped around 400 cubic meters, or more than 100,000 gallons, of crude oil from the leak location, according to Reuters.
The Druzhba leak comes about a month after significant ruptures developed in both Nord Stream 1 and 2, which deliver natural gas from Russia to Europe along the Baltic Sea floor. Officials from Denmark and Sweden claim the two pipelines sustained significant damage after an attack with explosives. Additionally, the Druzbha leak comes as tensions between the Kremlin and Europe remain heightened due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Despite the controversy surrounding the Nord Stream pipelines and now the Druzhba, PERN issued a statement saying the company doesn’t believe a third party inflicted the damage based on their initial findings and the way the pipe deformed. Likewise, while the investigation is ongoing, Polish officials don’t suspect sabotage.
Still, the Polish leak occurred during a tense time for European energy security concerns. Russia became a major natural gas and crude oil supplier to several European countries, including Germany, the continent’s largest economy. Particularly now, after Russian President Vladimir Putin invaded a neighboring country, Germany and other European nations are looking for avenues to lower their dependence on Russian energy. The European Union plans to embargo Russian oil as of December 5.
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