Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez said Spain, France and Portugal had agreed on Thursday to build an energy pipeline linking the Iberian peninsula to the rest of Europe, reviving a project long-resisted by Paris.
The new project, which Sanchez dubbed a Green Energy Corridor, would replace an earlier plan dubbed MidCat that emerged a decade ago but was dropped in 2019 over regulatory and funding issues.
But, with Russia withholding gas deliveries to most of Europe in reaction to sanctions over its invasion of Ukraine, there has been a resurgence of interest in a link to bring in much-needed supplies from Spain to the rest of the continent.
With energy prices soaring, Madrid pushed hard for the revival of the project, with the full backing of Berlin, which has seen Russian gas deliveries via a key pipeline shut off for the indefinite future.
“We have agreed to... a new project to be called the Green Energy Corridor to link the Iberian peninsula to France and therefore to the European energy market between Barcelona and Marseille,” Sanchez explained on his arrival for an EU summit on the energy crisis.
Sanchez said that the pipeline would move hydrogen and gas “during a transition period needed by the European energy market.”
Spain currently has six liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminals for processing gas that arrives by sea which could help the EU boost imports with a better link.
But it only has two low-capacity links to France’s gas network, which has connections to the rest of Europe.
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