Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) has finalized its route refinement study of the pipeline section between Thessaloniki and the Greek-Albanian border.
To help determine the TAP route, more than 50 national and international experts conducted comprehensive and detailed studies of a 50-kilometer-wide corridor. Three extensive field missions were organized in northern Greece to identify geological, environmental and cultural heritage constraints as well as safety and social concerns.
In 63 meetings with authorities at all levels, local companies and NGOs, TAP engaged with more than 400 people to obtain their feedback on the various pipeline alternatives and guidance on the preferred routing. As a result, TAP identified a preferred 2 km wide corridor that has the least impact on the environment, local communities and cultural heritage sites. This route can be constructed and is in full compliance with the highest safety standards. The survey work was led by world class engineering experts from E.ON, one of the shareholders in the TAP project, with participation of national and international consultants from Exergia, ERM and ILF.
In April, TAP will engage with authorities in Greece and organize local workshops to validate the selected corridor and agree on additional studies to be conducted in the context of the Environmental and Social Impact Assessment (ESIA). This process is in line with the strict performance requirements of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), and the ESIA report is to be officially submitted to Greek authorities in the second half of this year.
TAP’s proposed routing in Greece will be 190 km in length - the pipeline will start in Nea Mesimvria near Thessaloniki and extend to the Greek-Albanian border north of the town of Dipotamia.
Hans-Juergen Biewendt, TAP’s Technical Director in-charge of onshore pipeline development, said: “TAP has now completed its route refinement process in all three transit countries, including Greece. The route refinement will form part of the ESIA report, which will soon be submitted to authorities, lenders and the public for review. Our comprehensive studies and engagement with stakeholders in all three countries suggest that the selected route has the least impacts and is acceptable to authorities, communities and society in general. We are very proud to have earned the trust and support of all stakeholders through this process.”
The TAP project will be a significant source of foreign direct investment for Greece. It is expected to boost the economy, generate significant revenue and create many local opportunities through construction contracts as well as procurement of goods and services.
“The project provides significant strategic value to Greece as it promotes the country’s role as energy hub in the South Eastern Europe.” – said Michael Hoffmann, External Affairs and Communications Director at TAP.
About Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP)
The Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) is a natural gas pipeline project. The 520km long pipeline will transport gas from Caspian region via Greece and Albania and across the Adriatic Sea to Italy’s southern Puglia region and further to western Europe. The project is aimed at enhancing security of supply as well as diversification of gas supplies for the European markets. TAP will open a new so-called Southern Gas Corridor to Europe and market outlet for natural gas from the Caspian Sea.
The project is designed to expand transportation capacity from 10 to 20 bcm per year depending on throughput. The TAP project also envisages physical reverse flow of up to 8 bcm and the development of natural gas storage facilities in Albania to further ensure security of supply during operational interruptions of gas deliveries.
TAP’s shareholders are Swiss EGL (42.5%), Norwegian Statoil (42.5%) and German E.ON Ruhrgas (15%).