Eni aims to relaunch Libya's Greenstream pipeline by mid-October

Eni SPA Chief Executive Officer Paolo Scaroni, concerned by the pending onset of Europe’s winter season, said his firm has an “ambitious” goal of resuming exports of Libya’s natural gas through the Greenstream pipeline by mid-October.

“We are working towards the goal of relaunching [Greenstream] by Oct. 15,” Scaroni said, adding, “Perhaps it's a bit ambitious, but I'm in a hurry to restart gas shipments since facing winter with one of our supply sources suspended concerns me a great deal.”

Scaroni’s remarks followed those of a military spokesman for Libya’s governing National Transitional Council who said that Greenstream had been repaired, and would soon start supplying Sicily with gas again.

“The gasduct is now working again and can supply gas to the pumping station at Metillah,” said spokesman Ahmed Bani, who gave no timetable for the resumption of operations.

Earlier this week, Eni said it signed a memorandum of understanding with the NTC that aims at strengthening cooperation between them.

In particular, the two sides said that they are committed to “doing all that is necessary to restart operations on the Greenstream pipeline, bringing gas from the Libyan coast to Italy.”

The 540-km Greenstream pipeline is part of the Western Libyan Gas Project and includes the Mellitah compressor station on the Libyan coast, the underwater gas pipeline, and the reception terminal at Gela, in Sicily.

The pipeline carried 9.4 billion cu m/year of natural gas to Italy from western Libya until Eni closed the line in February when violence erupted in the North African nation.

Contact Eric Watkins at hippalus@yahoo.com.

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