HELSINKI, March 23. /TASS/. The Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) submitted by Nord Stream 2 AG, the operator of the Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline project, was given a ‘Good Environmental Impact Assessment’ at the annual EIA Day held in Helsinki on Thursday, the company’s Finnish subsidiary said.
"In its statement, the Finnish Association for Impact Assessment (FAIA) says that the EIA of the planned pipeline is well written and includes an extensive amount of information on the project's implementation alternatives and their impacts," the statement said.
The EIA was drafted by Nord Stream 2 environmental consultancy company Ramboll Finland.
Each year, the FAIA gives recognition to a meritorious environmental impact assessment.
"Nord Stream 2's EIA was assessed to have drawn on the experience from the existing Nord Stream Pipeline's EIA. Mitigation measures for reducing the impacts were said to be thoroughly considered and presented extensively, so that the potential negative impacts on for example marine life and sea traffic would remain minor. The assessment was also credited for its vast supplements describing for example engagement with various stakeholders, such as fishermen and coastal inhabitants. It is also stated that Nord Stream 2 has fulfilled its' responsibilities in the Espoo procedure very well," the statement said.
The Environmental Impact Assessment material is used as the basis for decision-making in the permitting procedure in Finland, where Nord Stream 2 requires two permits for the planned pipelines running 374 kilometres through the country's exclusive economic zone (EEZ): the government's consent for the use of the EEZ, and a water permit for the construction and operation of the pipeline. "The permits are expected to be received in the next weeks," the company said.
The Nord Stream 2 pipeline is expected to come into service at the end of 2019. The pipeline is set to run from the Russian coast along the Baltic Sea bed to the German shore. Each of the pipeline’s two stretches will have a capacity of 27.5 bln cubic meters. The new pipeline that is expected to connect the Russian resource base with European customers, will double the capacity of the first line and will basically follow its route. It will bypass transit countries of Ukraine, Belarus, Poland and other eastern European and Baltic countries, running through exclusive economic zones and territorial waters of five states - Russia, Finland, Sweden, Denmark and Germany.