Baltic Pipe project is a 900km natural gas pipeline project intended to supply gas from the Norwegian gas system in the North Sea to Poland, via Denmark.
The $1.88bn pipeline project is being jointly developed by Danish gas transmission operator Energinet and its Polish counterpart GAZ-System.
The Baltic Pipe project involves two offshore pipeline segments with a combined length of 385km in the North Sea and Baltic Sea, two onshore pipeline segments of up to 570km length in Denmark and Poland, and a compressor station at Zealand in Denmark.
The project, involving bi-directional pipeline segments, will not only facilitate natural gas supply from Norway to Poland and other countries in the Baltic region, but also enable reverse transmission from Poland to Denmark and Sweden.
Construction on the project is expected to begin in 2020 and operations are expected to begin by 2022.
With an estimated operational life of 50 years, the Baltic Pipe project is expected to annually supply up to ten billion cubic meters (bcm) of natural gas to Poland and 3bcm of natural gas to Sweden and Denmark.
Baltic Pipe project development details
The European Union (EU) recognized Baltic Pipe as a Project of Common Interest (PCI) in October 2013.
GAZ-System and Energinet completed the project’s feasibility study in 2016.
Final investment decision on the project was made in November 2018.
Baltic Pipe design and route details
The Baltic Pipe will originate offshore in the Norwegian waters of the North Sea. It will source gas from the existing Europipe II pipeline, which runs for 642km to supply natural gas from the Karsto gas processing plant in Stavanger, Norway, to Germany via an offshore pipeline route.
The first segment of the Baltic Pipe, named as the North Sea offshore pipeline, will be up to 110km-long and make a landfall at Blabjerg on the west coast of Denmark. It will be an 800mm-diameter pipeline operating at a pressure ranging between 8.5MPa and 11MPa.
The second segment will run up to 230km onshore in Denmark to transport gas from the Danish west coast to Zealand, where a new compressor station will be built. The Danish onshore segment will have a diameter ranging between 900mm and 1,000mm and operate at a pressure between 5MPa and 8MPa.
The compressor station, to be built over a 20ha-site at Zealand in Denmark, will facilitate gas supply to Poland as well as enable gas transport to the Danish transmission system.
The third pipeline segment will be a 275km-long and 900mm-diameter bi-directional offshore pipeline called the Baltic offshore pipeline. It will pass through the Danish and Polish territorial waters and the Swedish Exclusive Economic Zone in the Baltic Sea to make a landfall at Niechorze-Pogorzelica in Poland.
The operating pressure of the pipeline will range between 6.7MPa and 12MPa.
The final segment of the pipeline will run onshore up to 280km in Poland to connect to the Polish national transmission system. The diameter of the pipeline will be up to one meter, while the operating pressure will vary between 8.4MPa and 15MPa.
The project also involves the construction of Goleniów-Lwówek pipeline and a new compressor station at Gustorzyn, and extension of Goleniów and Odolanów gas compressor stations in Poland.
Key players involved
Energinet will plan, design, construct and own the North Sea offshore section, the onshore Denmark section, and the Zealand compressor station of the Baltic Pipe project.
GAZ-System will co-finance the Zealand compressor station project and plan, design, construct and own the Baltic offshore and Polish onshore sections of the pipeline.
Financing for Baltic Pipe project
The Baltic natural gas pipeline project is being co-financed by the European Union under two initiatives named Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) instrument and the Trans-European Networks for Energy Program (TEN-E).
The EU provided €3.19m ($4.42m) to GAZ-System for the preparatory works related to the Baltic Pipe project as part of the TEN-E program in 2009.
It also provided a subsidy of €0.4m ($0.45m) under CEF, which was utilized by GAZ-System and Energinet for the feasibility study of the Baltic pipeline project, in 2015.
In January 2018, the European Commission signed a co-financing agreement with GAZ-System and Energinet for €33.1m ($24.3m) under the CEF mechanism.
Contractors involved with the Baltic Pipe project
Ramboll Danmark and Gazoprojekt, along with sub-consultant Ernst & Young, completed the feasibility study for the project in 2016.
Ramboll was also contracted by GAZ-System for the environmental assessments and design of the offshore pipeline between Denmark and Poland in August 2017.
A consortium of Gazoprojekto and ILF Consulting was contracted to provide engineering design for the onshore Poland section of the pipeline in December 2017.
MGGP was selected to provide the same for the Goleniów-Lwówek pipeline in Poland.
The Danish engineering consulting companies IKM and COWI are engaged as consultants for the North Sea offshore section and the Danish onshore sections of the Baltic Pipe project.