US Official Says New Russian Arctic Pipeline ‘Dead in the Water’

by | Apr 15, 2024

US Official Says New Russian Arctic Pipeline ‘Dead in the Water’

by | Apr 15, 2024

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Novatek plans for LNG 2.

A top US official declared that Washington is using economic warfare to prevent Russia from completing a new liquefied natural gas (LNG) pipeline in the Arctic. Officials in Washington threatened the Nord Stream pipelines before explosions destroyed three of the four pipelines that transit energy from Russia to Germany. 

On Monday, US Assistant Secretary of State for Energy Resources Geoffrey Pyatt explained that the US had sanctioned Moscow in an effort to prevent the completion of a Russian pipeline in the Arctic, a project dubbed LNG 2. “Our role is to ensure Arctic LNG 2 is dead in the water,” he said. 

“We’re very focused on ensuring that Russia is not able to develop new projects in order to re-destine the gas that they previously sent to Europe,” Pyatt continued. “As the G7, we are collectively committed to doing everything we can to thwart Russia’s future energy revenue.”

While the White House says its crusade to slash Russian energy exports is intended to help Ukraine, maintaining high demand for American LNG exports has become a major political issue in Washington. House Speaker Mike Johnson is in negotiations with the White House to allow a floor vote for a bill that would provide another $61 billion for the proxy war in Ukraine, in exchange for the Biden administration ending the pause of new LNG exports. 

The US is the world’s largest LNG exporter. 

Pyatt’s remarks are similar to threats made by President Joe Biden and then-Undersecretary of State Victoria Nuland in 2022 before the Nord Stream pipelines were destroyed later that year. One month before the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Nuland said, “I want to be very clear to you today. If Russia invades Ukraine, one way or another Nord Stream 2 will not move forward.”

In a leaked 2014 phone call, Pyatt and Nuland were heard planning the overthrow of the elected Ukrainian government, and the installation of new rulers in Kiev with ultra-nationalist views.

In September of 2022, three of the four Nord Stream lines were destroyed in a series of underwater explosions. Investigations by several nations have resulted in no charges, with few details made public after nearly two years. Some Western intelligence agencies pointed the finger at a small group of Ukrainians who had rented a yacht to plant the explosives, while investigative reporter Seymour Hersh published an article alleging the White House ordered and planned the destruction of Nord Stream. 

Russian President Vladimir Putin has announced that Moscow will bolster its ship-building capabilities in response to the US sanctions targeting LNG 2. Last week, he signed a decree ordering the production of more ships, with an emphasis on those that can export Russian products.  

Kyle Anzalone

Kyle Anzalone

Kyle Anzalone is news editor of the Libertarian Institute, opinion editor of Antiwar.com and co-host of Conflicts of Interest with Will Porter and Connor Freeman.

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