Trans-Adriatic Pipeline begins route refinement study in northern Greece
TAP - 23/11/2010
The Trans Adriatic Pipeline announced today an important project milestone with the commencement of its route refinement study in Greece in preparation of the Environmental & Social Impact Assessment in line with standards of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD).
Altogether, 28 experts - from TAP, E.ON, as well as national and international consultants from Exergia, ERM and ILF will examine over the next three months the proposed routing for the TAP pipeline and possible alternatives in Greece. The engineers, geologists, seismic and logistic experts, as well as environmental and social professionals and cultural heritage specialists will survey various 2 km wide corridors along the TAP route with a total length of 500km in order to identify the optimal route for the TAP pipeline.
As part of this exercise, TAP intends to engage with national and regional administrations, local communities, businesses and interest groups to gather important information on how the various routes being investigated could affect these important stakeholders, and avoid or minimize any impact the pipeline route may have.
This initial phase of the route refinement study is scheduled to be undertaken from November 22 through to November 27, with a second phase planned for early next year.
The process undertaken by TAP complies with EU and international best practice, and provides opportunities for external stakeholders to provide input on the project design and scope. "We want to identify which route impacts the least on the environment and livelihoods while being technically feasible," said Martin Ferguson, TAP’s HSE Director. "There are of course challenges regarding the large number of protected areas and sensitive habitats, archaeological aspects and the crossing of mountain ranges. However, our experience shows that a comprehensive study - in line with international best practice - and an open dialogue with all relevant stakeholders will lead to an optimal route."
"We aim to fully engage with all relevant local groups and to meet with regional and local government, interest groups and communities to ensure that all voices are heard and that we can build a strong collaboration for the future," Ferguson pointed out. TAP and its shareholders are proud of their environmental and social management record and are committed to undertake all phases of the development in a safe, environmentally responsible and sustainable manner.
The TAP project will be a significant source of foreign direct investment for Greece, is expected to boost the economy, generate significant revenue and create local opportunities through construction contracts as well as procurement of goods and services.
TAP has already completed its routing optimization study in Albania, and is well advanced in Italy.
The Trans Adriatic Pipeline is a natural gas pipeline project supported by shareholders Statoil, EGL and E.ON Ruhrgas. It will deliver gas from the Caspian region to Europe via Greece, Albania, and Italy. TAP requires no public grants or subsidies, and is the shortest – at 520 kilometres – and most commercially viable of the pipeline options designed to secure the future of Europe’s energy supply. It additionally contains considerable benefits that will help improve the security of supply, including a proposed underground storage option in Albania and the possibility of reverse flow which could be initiated in the event of an emergency.
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