Nord Stream to Test Baltic Bottom Mud in May
by Deutsche Presse-Agentur (dpa)
March 22, 2007
The Russian-German joint-venture company that plans to build a gas pipeline through the Baltic Sea said Thursday it would be taking more samples of sea-bottom mud from May as it compiles an environmental-impact report for Baltic governments.
Nord Stream said the first stage of international consultations on
the pipeline project had been completed. The pipe will enable a sharp
increase in exports of Russian gas to fire German power stations,
heat homes and run factories.
The company had received 129 submissions from authorities,
environmentalists and other groups in the Baltic region. Most came
from Finland (50), Germany (29) and Sweden (29). Others came from
Denmark, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Russia.
While Poland is mainly concerned that the undersea pipeline will
sidetrack its overland pipelines, Nordic nations are especially
worried that construction work will stir up toxic substances in the
mud or disturb dumps containing World War Two chemical weapons.
Danish, German, Finnish, Russia and Swedish officials meeting
Tuesday and Wednesday in Stockholm had called for a report showing
the pipeline's impact on the Baltic Sea as a whole, Nord Stream said.
The joint-venture company said it would now go back to sea-bottom
sites that had been deemed especially sensitive and collect samples
of sediment there in May and June.
Nord Stream said the pipe would not be buried in the seabed, but
rest on the sea-bottom.
To assess the impact on Baltic fishing, scientists would also test
in April and May what would happen if trawler nets were dragged
across the tube. Nord Stream is to pay for training programmes for
Baltic fishermen on how to safely fish near the pipeline.
A research ship would also drag sonar instruments and a metal
detector this summer along the pipeline route near known ammunition
dumping sites to see if any chemical bombs were in the path of the
Copyright 2007 dpa Deutsche Presse-Agentur GmbH
Nord Stream Pipeline
Nord Stream AG
Vyborg, Russia to Greifswald, Germany Russian Federation