Polish Toledo

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Monday, June 12, 2017

Nat Gas Coming liquified

The first liquefied natural gas shipment from the United States arrived at Poland's newly constructed LNG terminal in Świnoujście. Prior to this, a delivery was made from Qatar. The shipments of natural gas are a landmark of sorts in Europe’s continuing drive to diversify the sources of its energy imports.

Poland's first LNG Terminal at Świnoujście

For Poland, imports from the U.S. and Middle East countries are fruit of new energy infrastructure that allows it to reduce near total dependence on Russian imports.

“It’s very important, it’s a milestone,” one Polish diplomat told Foreign Policy. The diplomat said energy diversification is a top priority for eastern Europe countries in Russia’s shadow, a safety net if Moscow ever decides to cut supplies in geopolitical ploys against its neighbors — something it has repeatedly done in the past.
 
Eastern European countries like Poland and the Baltic states have already suffered past episodes of Russian energy bullying. Now, they are increasingly unnerved by Russia’s tense showdown with NATO over Ukraine, Syria, and a slew of other geopolitical minefields. But they also remain heavily reliant on Russian energy. 

Russia, for its part, is just as reliant on cash from its energy exports to Europe to shore up its anemic economy. (Europe is by far the biggest market for Gazprom, the big natural gas firm, grandiose plans to expand to China notwithstanding.) As Europe diversifies its gas supplies — from the United States, Norway, and other gas exporters like Qatar, Russia will face a choice between losing its big share of the market — and the political clout that comes with it — or lowering prices to stay competitive.

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