Operative information of the natural gas transmission and storage system operator AS "Conexus Baltic Grid” shows that 657 190.999 MWh (62 687 447 m3) natural gas is removed from Inčukalns Underground Gas Storage (UGS) on the second half of February that is the largest volume of natural gas removed from within a week this year.
It must be taken into account that traditionally January and February is one of the critical periods of natural gas removal season because the volume of natural gas accrued in the storage has dropped at the end of season. At the beginning of calendar year, the coldest weather is observed most frequently which in turns influences the rise of request for natural gas. Besides, the high demand for natural from 17-23 February was facilitated by the repair works in the Valdaja - Pskov transmission span.
"This year shows very clearly how strategically important is Inčukalns UGS for safe and stable natural gas supply in Latvia. Storage and transmission pipes are a united infrastructure system in Latvia that guarantees that the consumers in Latvia don't need to worry about natural gas supplies in the conditions of high request of natural gas. The estimates of our experts show that without the natural gas accrued in Inčukalns UGS this year would have brought huge challenges for the natural gas users if they had to look for alternative supplies that is a complicated and expensive process in the middle of the season. I hope that the conclusions drawn from this season urges the natural gas users to realize their role in the natural gas system by choosing such solution of natural gas supplies that are safe also in the conditions of high demand,” emphasises Zane Kotāne, Chairwoman of the Board of JSC "Conexus Baltic Grid”.
Z. Kotāne reminds also that this year it is important to continue the discussion started last year about the creation of most suitable Inčukalns UGS operation model in the circumstances of open market to strengthen the strategic importance of the storage in the Latvian natural gas supply. Since the storage is an important instrument for the safety of Latvian gas supply, a solution that is suitable for the whole industry must be found as soon as possible.