Poland Detects Leak on Druzhba Pipeline

Poland said on Wednesday it detected a leak on one of the Druzhba pipelines delivering oil from Russia to Europe. The leak, which Poland said was most likely caused by an accident, will hit supplies to Germany. Poland said on Wednesday a leak in one of the Druzhba pipelines bringing oil from Russia to Europe hit supplies to Germany and was most likely caused by an accident, as Europe remains on high alert over its energy security.

Poland’s top official in charge of energy infrastructure, Berger, said “Here we can talk about accidental damage,”. “We are living in turbulent times, different connotations are possible, but at this stage we have no grounds at all to believe that,” he added.

Europe has been on alarm over the security of its energy infrastructure since major leaks were found late last month on Nord Stream 1 and 2 pipelines that run under the Baltic Sea. Both the West and Russia have blamed sabotage.

Berger said as a result of the leak, part of the shipping capacity towards Germany was not available. He said he did not expect repairs would take long.

Meanwhile, the economy minister of the German state of Brandenburg, Steinbach, said a drop in pressure was detected although PERN said supplies to Germany were reduced but continuing.

Druzhba is one of the world’s largest oil pipelines, carrying Russian oil to much of Central Europe including Germany, Poland, Belarus, Hungary, Slovakia, the Czech Republic and Austria.

Poland’s petroelum refinery company PKN Orlen said oil supplies to its Plock refinery were not interrupted while a spokesperson for the Czech pipeline operator MERO said it had not seen any change in flows to the country.

The second line of the pipeline, and other elements of PERN’s infrastructure, were working as normal, PERN said.

The pipeline’s western section carries a total of 27 million tonnes of crude oil per year from Poland to Germany.

Germany’s Schwedt refinery, which supplies 90% of Berlin’s fuel is particularly dependent on Druzhba.

The German government aims to eliminate imports of oil from Russia by the end of the year under European Union sanctions. But in the first seven months of the year, Russia was still its top supplier, accounting for over 30% of oil imports.

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