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11 May 2022, 13:10
Julian Wettengel

Praise and criticism for German government’s LNG acceleration act

Clean Energy Wire / dpa

Germany’s government has decided on a draft text for an LNG (liquefied natural gas) Acceleration Act to speed up planning and construction of necessary infrastructure for direct imports. Energy industry association BDEW welcomed the proposal that is part of a broader government initiative to wean the country off Russian fossil fuel imports. “For the goal of being able to replace Russian gas supplies almost entirely with other sources by 2024, own [domestic] LNG terminals are indispensable,” said BDEW head Kerstin Andreae. She said it can be justified in an exceptional situation like the present one, “where the security of gas supply in Germany is at stake,” to accelerate approval processes and thus also individual permit steps. Environmental NGO DUH, however, criticised the plans and warned of an “oversized” build-up of LNG infrastructure. “In the interest of the environment and the climate, the following must apply: Only as much fossil energy as necessary, as little as possible,” said managing director Sascha Müller-Kraenner.

The LNG act will now be debated in parliament (Bundestag), and the council of state governments (Bundesrat) must also agree for it to take effect, writes news agency dpa. The draft says the LNG import infrastructure to be built now must be fully converted to receive only climate-neutral hydrogen and derivates like ammonia by 2043, writes the news agency.

Germany is rapidly pushing several infrastructure projects for the import of liquefied natural gas (LNG) in order to reduce its dependence on Russian natural gas. Germany has a well-developed natural gas pipeline grid and is connected to terminals in neighbouring countries, but does not currently have its own port to receive LNG directly.

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