Spain stored nearly half of all European LNG during the first quarter

Spain has become an energy bunker. Under the scenario of supply uncertainty as a result of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the tanks of Spain’s six operating gas regasification plants were stockpiled 43% of all European liquefied natural gas (LNG) during the first quarter. According to data from Enagás, the operator of the Spanish gas system, these terminals have received LNG from 13 different sources and the average filling level was about 60%which is ten percentage points higher than the same period of the previous year.

In this sense, the number Ships recharged at natural gas regasification stations It increased 124% compared to the first quarter of the previous year, going from 17th to 38th. Spain has approximately 30% of Europe’s regasification capacity. Enagás has gas regasification plants in Barcelona, ​​Cartagena and Huelva. In addition, it owns 50% of the Bahia Bizcaya Gas Plant (BBG) in Bilbao, and 72.5% of the Sagas terminal in Sagunto. The terminal in El Musel (Gijón), which has never been commissioned since its construction, has also received the go-ahead from the government to operate and Enagás has already begun the process of mapping the logistics of the terminal. For its part, Reganosa operates the Ferrol port of Mugardos.

In addition, Spain overcame the winter with underground natural gas storages at nearly 80% of filling capacity, Meet the milestone set by European regulations for September 2023 five months in advance, as already published by La Información. As of April 23, the filling level was 87.82%, while the European Union (EU) average was 57.94%, according to data for European operators published by GIE-AGSI. The United States established itself as the country’s most important supplier in the first quarter.

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According to Enagás, which reported a profit of 54.6 million euros in the first quarter, The Spanish gas system has established itself as the entry point for the supply of natural gas to Europe. Thus, during the first three months of the year, a historic record for natural gas shipments to France of 8 TWh (TWh) was set. In total, natural gas exports from Spain increased by 104% during this period.

new stations

Within a year of the invasion, the EU had succeeded in replacing nearly 75% of Russian gas imports compared to pre-crisis levels, according to an analysis by Zero Carbon Analytics. In this sense, in addition to striving for greater diversification of suppliers, The old continent launched to build a new LNG capacitybeing the clearest example of Germany.

The German country does on the fast track It even excludes projects from environmental impact assessments, which have stirred up pimples among the left. The first floating LNG facility opened in December (with gas imported from Spain) in the port of Wilhelmshaven, near Bremen, after being built in record time, and in less than a month, the second opened in Lubmen, on the Baltic Sea. The third station, the Hoegh Gannet floating station, is located in the port of Elbehafen in Brunsbüttel, at the mouth of the Elbe River and near the city of Hamburg. She chose RWE Reganosa to operate and maintain it


However, all that glitters is not gold. A study by the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA) warns against this More than half of Europe’s LNG import capacity could become unusable by 2030. In his view, current plans to build the facilities will “by far” exceed projected LNG demand by the end of the decade. The study confirms that the capacity of European LNG terminals could exceed 400,000 million cubic meters in 2030, compared to 270,000 million cubic meters at the end of 2022. However, the IEEFA notes that the demand for LNG by 2030 will be around 150,000 million cubic meters.

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For its part, S&P Global Commodity Insight expects 190 bcm. Spain, Turkey, UK, France, Italy and Germany are the countries most at risk of asset abandonmentAccording to the analysis. “This is the most expensive and unnecessary insurance policy in the world. Europe must carefully balance gas and LNG systems, avoiding tipping the balance from reliability to redundancy,” says report author and IEEFA energy analyst, Europe, Anna Maria Galler.

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