Tuesday, June 6, 2023

Banned at home, but affordable abroad: Spain doubles US fracking gas imports

Geographical contradictions. In 2022, Spain had a natural gas supplier. While purchases from Algeria fell 40%, imports into the United States skyrocketed. As much as double in one year the volume of liquefied natural gas comes from North America. And with methane tankers hydrocarbon from fracking comes to Spain. The technique of hydraulic fracturing is prohibited by the Spanish Climate Change Law.

The blockade of the Algerian gas pipeline doubles the supply of ships in the middle of the sea

In addition

The point is that problems with the gas pipelines that serve Spain from Algeria cause imports from the African region to fall from a volume equivalent to 177,900 Gw/h to 105,400 Gw/h. 40% less, according to data from the Corporation for Strategic Resources for Petroleum Products (CORES).

Algeria closed the pipeline that runs partly through Morocco in October 2021 as a pressure measure due to tensions between the two Maghreb states. Faced with this situation, Spain doubled its gas supply. A good part from the US.

So in the same year the purchase of the United States went from 60,000 to 128,900 Gw/h. 115% more. That’s about 12.1 billion cubic meters, according to the equivalent calculation by the Food and Water Act. 32% loss in Spain, they declare.

This move has meant a greater amount of natural gas being extracted through fracking to Spain, and from there, where appropriate, to Europe, since up to 87% of North American production comes from this technique, according to the American Energy Information Administration.

It is legal to throw water into the rocks

The paradox ends as fracking in Spain is prohibited by the Climate Change law in force after May 2021: “No new concessions shall be granted to allow in the national territory (…) any operation for the exploitation of hydrocarbons in. which is the use of high-volume hydraulic fracturing, as stated in the text.

Fracking involves injecting water with chemicals produced at high pressure into the subsoil to cause or amplify fractures in the underlying rock deposits and facilitate the release of hydrocarbons.

A legal asterisk fighting formula in Spain. When some independent communities such as Catalonia, Euskadi, Navarra, La Rioja or Castilla-La Mancha tried to legally prevent it from being carried out in their borders, the Government, requested by Mariano Rajoy (PP), came to court to cancel those decisions.

The state is competent in the matter of hydrocarbons and its position has been confirmed by the Constitutional Court.

Food and Water Action estimates that Spain has become the second largest importer in the European Union of liquefied natural gas from the United States. “He received 136 ships between January and December 2022.” And his analysis – carried out for the Gas network is not a solution – adds that the majority came from “the termination of Sabine Trans, (in the state of Louisiana), which was followed by the termination of Corpus Christi in Texas. Both are owned by Cheniere, the largest US LNG fracking company.

Hydraulic fracturing has caused all that controversy and tension between regional governments and the Ministry of Industry because of its environmental (and social) impacts. Applied liquid residues pose a threat of water contamination in addition to the methane plume associated with those wells. Methane is a powerful greenhouse gas that causes global warming.

“Despite the recognition of the Spanish Government’s significant exploitation of the environmental and social impacts of gas through hydraulic fracturing, there are no measures in place to avoid these impacts outside our borders”, the network emphasizes the requests that the law implies to include the ban in this. produced together with “a permanent and ambitious reduction in fossil gas consumption aimed at protecting the energy poor and leaving no one behind in the shift to clean energy.”

Nation World News Desk
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