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Editorial comment

With February marking a year since the start of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine,1 it feels like an understatement to say that the past year has been one of monumental change. Since the start of the attack, Europe instantly began to reduce its reliance on Russia, especially in terms of natural gas, instead starting to build infrastructure elsewhere on the continent so as to be able to support themselves, without the need to import from Russia anymore. European countries have begun to reactivate formerly dormant regasification projects whilst also developing new projects,2 such as in Germany, where a new LNG terminal has been privately financed by Macquarie Capital and WaveCrest.2

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Germany, in particular, has seen an exponential growth in its LNG industry over the past year. The country is currently undergoing developments for three new FSRU terminals in Lubmin, Brunsbuttel, and Wilhelmshaven, which will add 1.4 billion ft3/d of regasification capacity cumulatively.2 FSRUs have been an extremely popular way to develop new regasification projects in Europe quickly over the past 12 months2 – LNG terminals take far longer to build, and Europe needs gas immediately so cannot afford to wait for terminals to be constructed in many cases. Deutsche ReGas’s Lubmin floating terminal will be the largest contributor to the LNG regasification capacity additions in Germany, with its initial capacity of 159 billion ft3 in 2022 anticipated to increase to 477 billion ft3 by 2026.4

Germany will have the highest LNG regasification capacity additions in Europe between 2022 and 2026,4 due to the positive actions the country has taken since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Germany will account for approximately 36% of Europe’s total LNG capacity additions by 2026,4 emphasising how influential they have become in regards to the market in Europe.

The February issue’s regional report, written by Bill Farren-Price from Enverus, can be found on p.10 and centres on how geopolitics have impacted Europe’s LNG industry, focusing particularly on the aftermath of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and Europe’s response. Farren-Price highlights how Russia had previously held a dominant position within the natural gas export market, but the country’s actions caused the entire continent to destabilise, leaving the rest of Europe to grapple with the repercussions. Furthermore, Alexela’s article on p.60 discusses how Finland is striving to build infrastructure within the country to support their future LNG growth, focusing specifically on how the Hamina LNG terminal will improve supply security. The article again discusses how this was particularly triggered in response to the actions of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

It is clear that a lot can change in a year, and this has been evidenced by the majority of European countries that have taken positive strides to ensure that the continent will never be left floundering again due to a reliance on one country’s supply of natural gas. Through it all, the need for LNG has never been questioned, but instead its necessity has been thoroughly highlighted.

  1. KIRBY, P., ‘Why did Russia invade Ukraine and has Putin’s war failed?’, BBC News, (16 November 2022).
  2. ZARETSKAYA, V., ‘Europe’s LNG import capacity set to expand by one-third by end of 2024’, U.S. Energy Information Administration, (28 November 2022).
  3. ‘Macquarie Capital and WaveCrest help deliver Germany’s first privately financed LNG terminal’, Macquarie Group, (27 January 2023).
  4. ‘Germany to continue to secure gas supplies by leading LNG regasification capacity additions in Europe through 2026, says GlobalData’, GlobalData, (11 November 2022).