Energy Supremo: Nabucco Pipeline Is Best European Solution
Construction of the western-backed Nabucco gas pipeline that bypasses Russia would be more effective in increasing Europe's energy security than the Russian South Stream project, according to Nobuo Tanaka, Executive Director of the International Energy Agency (IEA).
Tanaka addressed a European energy security summit in the Hungarian capital, Budapest, on Wednesday.
The Nabucco project would diversify gas supply routes in Europe, even though the pipeline was longer and would require a larger investment than its rival South Stream, he claimed, adding that an increase in the number of gas suppliers would contribute to European security.
Although the South Stream pipeline would bypass Ukraine, increasing security of supply for Europe, it would still deliver Russian gas, like the other pipelines in the region, Tanaka pointed out.
The Nabucco pipeline, an EU-led and US-backed project, would instead convey Middle Eastern and Caspian gas through Turkey and Bulgaria to Austria in an effort to break the current Russian monopoly over regional energy supplies. Construction is scheduled to begin by the end of 2011, with completion expected in 2014.
The principle of "the more the better" applied from the point of view of energy security, Tanaka stated. "If supply sources are expanded and the number of delivery routes grows, security improves."
"That is why Nabucco appears to be the best solution," he concluded.