Nord Stream (former names: North Transgas and North European Gas Pipeline; Russian: Северный поток, Severny potok) is an offshore natural gas pipeline from Vyborg in the Russian Federation to Greifswald in Germany that is owned and operated by Nord Stream AG. The project includes two parallel lines. The first line was laid by May 2011 and was inaugurated on 8 November 2011. The second line was laid in 2011–2012 and was inaugurated on 8 October 2012. At 1,222 kilometres (759 mi) in length, it is the longest sub-sea pipeline in the world, surpassing the Langeled pipeline. It has an annual capacity of 55 billion cubic metres (1.9 trillion cubic feet), but its capacity is planned to be doubled to 110 billion cubic metres (3.9 trillion cubic feet) by 2019, by laying two additional lines. The name occasionally has a wider meaning, including the feeding onshore pipeline in the Russian Federation, and further connections in Western Europe.
The original pipeline project started in 1997 when Gazprom and the Finnish company Neste (in 1998 merged with Imatran Voima to form Fortum, and 2004 separated again to Fortum and Neste Oil) formed the joint company North Transgas Oy for construction and operation of a gas pipeline from Russia to Northern Germany across the Baltic Sea. North Transgas cooperated with the German gas company Ruhrgas (became later part of E.ON). A route survey in the Exclusive Economic Zones of Finland, Sweden, Denmark and Germany, and a feasibility study of the pipeline was conducted in 1998. Several routes were considered including routes with onshore segments through Finland and Sweden.
On 24 April 2001, Gazprom, Fortum, Ruhrgas and Wintershall adopted a statement regarding a joint feasibility study for construction of the pipeline. On 18 November 2002, the Management Committee of Gazprom approved a schedule of project implementation. In May 2005, Fortum withdrew from the project and sold its stake in North Transgas to Gazprom. As a result, Gazprom became the only shareholder of North Transgas Oy.
On 8 September 2005, Gazprom, BASF and E.ON signed a basic agreement on the construction of a North European Gas Pipeline. On 30 November 2005, the North European Gas Pipeline Company (later renamed Nord Stream AG) was incorporated in Zug, Switzerland. On 9 December 2005, Gazprom started construction of the Russian onshore feeding pipeline. On 4 October 2006, the pipeline and the operating company were officially renamed Nord Stream AG. After establishment of Nord Stream AG, all information related to the pipeline project, including results of the seabed survey of 1998, were transferred from North Transgas to the new company, and on 2 November 2006, North Transgas was officially dissolved.
The environmental impact assessment started on 16 November 2006 with notification sent to Russia, Finland, Sweden, Denmark and Germany, as parties of origin (the countries whose exclusive economic zones and/or territorial waters the pipeline is planned to pass through), as well as to Poland, Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia as affected parties. The final report on transboundary environmental impact assessment was delivered on 9 March 2009.
On 19 March 2007, Nord Stream AG mandated Italian company Snamprogetti, a subsidiary of Saipem, for detailed design engineering of the pipeline. A letter of intent for construction works was signed with Saipem on 17 September 2007 and the contract was concluded on 24 June 2008. On 25 September 2007, the pipe supply contracts were awarded to the pipe producers EUROPIPE and OMK, and on 18 February 2008, the concrete weight coating and logistics services agreement was awarded to EUPEC PipeCoatings S.A. The supply contracts for the second line were awarded to OMK, Europipe and Sumitomo Heavy Industries on 22 January 2010. On 30 December 2008 Rolls-Royce plc was awarded a contract to supply gas turbines driving centrifugal compressors and on 8 January 2009, Royal Boskalis Westminster and Danish Dredging Contractor Rohde Nielsen A/S. were awarded a joint venture seabed dredging contract.
The agreement to take N.V. Nederlandse Gasunie to the consortium as the fourth partner, was signed on 6 November 2007. On 10 June 2008, Gasunie was included in the register of shareholders. On 1 March 2010, French energy company GDF Suez signed with Gazprom a memorandum of understanding to acquire 9% stake in the project. The transaction was closed in July 2010.