Swedish MPs Oppose Gas Pipeline
Seven out of ten Swedish members of parliament who responded to a Swedish Radio News survey are against plans to build a gas pipline between Russia and Germany that is to run under the ecologically sensitive waters of the Baltic Sea.
One out of ten expressed their backing for the $US 7 billion project, with the remainder saying they had no opinion on the issue.
Two thirds of Sweden’s 349 MPs responded to the survey, which showed resistance to the pipeline was strongest among opposition parliamentarians, although some MPs from the four parties of Sweden’s centre-right coalition government also registered concern over the project.
Those MPs against the pipeline cited fears over security and the environment as their prime concerns.
The Russian-led consortium behind the pipeline, Nordstream, is seeking Sweden’s approval for the route as it runs through Swedish waters, and has ruled out an overland route via Poland.
The 1,200 km pipeline has divided countries around the Baltic, some of which have raised concerns over the environmental impact of running the pipeline along the seabed.
Fears have also been raised that the project could disturb unexploded ordanance and chemical and biological weapons dumped in the Baltic after the Second World War.
The sea is one of the world’s most enclosed, greatly intensifying the impact of pollution on marine life.
Nordstream has repeatedly defended its plans, saying a pipeline between Russia and Germany is the best route both technically, environmentally and economically.