HELSINKI, April 14 The Nord Stream consortium
sees the Baltic Sea as the only route for its planned gas
pipeline linking Russia and Germany and will not consider an
overland alternative, its CEO said on Monday.
Nord Stream, majority-owned by Russian gas export monopoly
Gazprom (GAZP.MM) and whose minority stakeholders include
Germany's E.ON EONG.DE and BASF BASF.DE, has faced criticism
over the pipeline's ecological impact on the Baltic seabed.
Poland, fearing Nord Stream bypassing its territory would
enable Russia to cut off crucial gas supplies to the country,
while continuing to deliver to Western Europe, backs the
proposed Amber land pipeline stretching across the Baltic
But Chief Executive Matthias Warnig said an overland route
was not an option.
"The shareholders gave our company the order to build an
offshore pipeline through the Baltic Sea and in that they are
investing millions of euros," he told Reuters at an event in
"The order is not -- and it's not up for debate -- to have
an overland route as an alternative solution for Nord Stream."
"We have to optimise our pipeline, the laying of it and the
technology that we are using so that it is environmentally
friendly," Warnig said.
He added the deadline of deliveries starting in 2011 and
planned cost of 7.4 billion euros ($11.7 billion) were still
valid, despite environmental delays.
"We are devoting more time to this process, but we have also
made technological progress which allows us to build the
pipeline faster, so that the deadline of 2011 remains valid for
(Reporting by Agnieszka Flak; editing by James Jukwey)