South Stream Transport Eyes Two Options for Beach Crossing in Bulgaria
Monday, 14 October 2013
The South Stream Transport, the consortium that will build a gas pipeline from Russia to Italy, said it is assessing two alternative options for crossing Pasha Dere Beach, near the Bulgarian city of Varna.
After crossing the Black Sea, the South Stream pipeline will come on land at Pasha Dere Beach, and then run through Bulgaria, Serbia, Hungary and Slovenia to northern Italy.
"During consultations and public discussions, people expressed concerns that the project would adversely affect the beach. In response to public feedback, South Stream Transport is assessing two alternatives during preparation for the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) Report," the consortium said in a press release.
One alternative envisages digging a trench across the beach to place the pipelines in, which will then be filled back, and the second involves drilling small-diameter tunnels under the beach and then installing the pipelines in these tunnels. The second method is slightly more complex and expensive, but the pipelines are installed at a greater depth which means that there would be no construction on the beach itself, it added. Both approaches envisage the pipes to be laid deep under the beach so they will be invisible on the surface after construction and during operations of the pipeline.
The South Stream Transport consortium has four shareholders: Russia's Gazprom, Italy’s Eni, France's EDF, and Wintershall Holding, a BASF subsidiary.
South Stream is planned to go on stream by the end of 2015 with a pipeline capacity of some 63 billion cubic metres per year.