US imposes more Nord Stream 2 sanctions
The US is working with its European allies to counter the threat posed to Ukraine by the Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline, the State Department said November 22.
The State Department said it was sanctioning Russian-linked entities for their role in the Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline. Under the Protecting Europe's Energy Security Act of 2019, it has imposed the sanctions on a Russian-owned entity called Transadria and a vessel it owns, the Marlin. It also mentioned a second vessel that was involved in the project but did not disclose details.
Nord Stream 2 is already complete, but German regulators have halted the process for its certification and the US and other opponents of the project continues efforts to thwart it.
“Even as the administration continues to oppose the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, including via our sanctions, we continue to work with Germany and other allies and partners to reduce the risks posed by the pipeline to Ukraine and frontline NATO and EU countries and to push back against harmful Russian activities, including in the energy sphere,” the State Department said.
The US and some east European states worry the pipeline undermines European energy security because it continues to strengthen Russia’s grip on the regional energy sector. Russia argues the project supports European energy security because it avoids geopolitically-sensitive territory in Ukraine.
But by avoiding the network of Soviet-era pipelines running through Ukraine, it also starves the country of transit revenue it would otherwise receive.
The Nord Stream 2 consortium is 100%-owned by Russian energy company Gazprom, which will also supply all of the gas that flows through the pipeline. Under a recent EU gas directive amendment, pipelines like Nord Stream 2 that run from third countries still must comply with EU energy market rules on unbundling and third-party access.