GAS INTERCONNECTION POLAND–LITHUANIA (GIPL)


This is a natural gas infrastructure that will connect Polish and Lithuanian as well as Baltic and Finnish natural gas transmission systems with the the European Union ( EU) system. Natural gas will be transmitted in both directions. The GIPL gas pipeline will run from Jauniūnai Gas Compressor Station (GCS) in Širvintos district to the Hołowczyce GCS on the Polish side. It is planned that the connection between Poland and Lithuania will be established until the end of 2021. GIPL project has been recognised by the European Commission as a Project of Common Interest (PCI).

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Investments

The preliminary GIPL project value is EUR 500 million. Investments to infrastructure in the territory of Lithuania will amount to EUR 136 million. EU financial assistance has been provided to prepare Business Case Analysis and  Feasibility Study as well as the preparation of the Environmental Impact Assessment Report of the GIPL Project under the European Commission's Trans-European Energy Networks (TEN-E) program, which made 50% of eligible costs. Following the European Commission's decision of 2014, up to EUR 10.6 million was allocated for preparatory works of the GIPL project and up to EUR 295.4 million for construction works under the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF). In addition to EU financial support, the construction of the GIPL project will be funded by Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia by a cross-border cost allocation decision covering part of the GIPL infrastructure costs in the territory of Poland - a total of EUR 54.9 million. The rest of the project is funded by the project promoters.

Benefits of the Project

Will integrate gas markets of the Baltic States and Finland into a common EU gas market

Will diversify access to alternative gas supply sources, routes, counterparties and increase of competition

Will increase security and reliability of gas supply – both in terms of additional interconnection capacity and possibility to apply solidarity measures between Member States

Will enable more flexible and efficient use of LNG terminals and transmission infrastructure in Poland and Lithuania

Will enhance liquidity both in Polish and Baltic gas areas and strengthen their regional role

News

Archaeological research under way along the GIPL route


As the scheduled construction works for the Gas Interconnection Poland–Lithuania (GIPL) proceed, archaeological research along the planned pipeline route has begun in parallel. For the Lithuanian archaeologists, this is one of the largest projects in recent years.

 
As the scheduled construction works for the Gas Interconnection Poland–Lithuania (GIPL) proceed, archaeological research along the planned pipeline route has begun in parallel. For the Lithuanian archaeologists, this is one of the largest projects in recent years.
 
The work along the gas pipeline route is being carried out by a team of archaeologists from the Lithuanian Institute of History, Klaipėda University, Vilnius University, and the companies Kultūros Paveldo Išsaugojimo Pajėgos and Kultūros Vertybių Paieška. The team is being headed by Prof. Albinas Kuncevičius, who is the head of the Department of Archaeology at the Vilnius University Faculty of History. Prof. Kuncevičius says that in building the gas pipeline, archaeological heritage will be preserved: historical finds will be scientifically investigated and recorded in scientific sources, and the information will be passed on to future generations.
“This will be the first time in the history of Lithuania that, in carrying out a large-scale construction project, the top layer of soil will be moved aside before excavating the pipeline trench a couple of metres into the ground. This means that we will walk side by side with the gas pipeline contractors over the route and see what new archaeological monuments unfold. For the first time, we will have an archaeological section that will allow us to gather more information about historical times, human life and vegetation. This is standard practice in Western European countries,” said Prof. Kuncevičius.
According to acting CEO of Amber Grid Nemunas Biknius, by coordinating actions, the gas pipeline construction and archaeological research will create added value – not only will the gas interconnection with Western Europe be built, but a large part of Lithuania will also be explored using various archaeological research methods.
“We are proud that not only a new energy bridge between Lithuania and Poland will be build, it will also allow us to contribute to the study of Lithuania’s historical heritage. During construction of the gas interconnection, comprehensive archaeological research will be conducted over an area of almost 9,000 square metres, while an archaeological survey will be carried out over the entire area of the gas pipeline route, which covers close to 200 hectares of land. Together, we are all contributing to our knowledge of the country’s historical heritage,” says Mr Biknius.
Teams of archaeologists have already conducted archaeological surveys, checking the terrain of the future pipeline route, crossing over the area with a metal detector, and taking pictures of the selected areas with drones. According to Prof. Kuncevičius, the second stage of work is now being prepared for. There are several areas of importance along the GIPL route, which is spread out over almost half of Lithuania.
“Along the path of the future gas pipeline from Širvintos to Lazdijai, we are singling out three places that are extremely valuable from an archaeological point of view – the Kernavė area, the Kruonis region, and Punia in the district of Alytus. We are hoping to discover finds here from the Mesolithic period of the Stone Age and 1st-4th century AD settlements. The GIPL route was selected in such a way as to avoid already known archaeological sites, so efforts will be made to investigate previously unknown archaeological monuments without interrupting construction of the gas pipeline,” said Prof. Kuncevičius.
Two-thirds, or 100 km, of the Lithuanian side of the GIPL are planned to be constructed by the end of 2020. In the three months since construction began, 62 km of steel pipes were brought in to Lithuania from Poland, 40 km of pipes were welded, and 20 km of forest were prepared for the construction of the pipeline. The length of the gas interconnection route in Lithuania is 165 km. Currently, work for explosion testing is also being carried out along the pipeline route, and the extremely complex horizontal directional drilling is planned for summer for laying the pipeline under Lithuania’s largest rivers, the Neris and the Nemunas.
 
Once the gas interconnection is completed in late 2021, capacity will be created to transport up to 27 terawatt-hours (TWh) of gas per year to the Baltic States, and up to 21 TWh per year to Poland, and the Baltic gas markets will become part of the single EU gas market.

 

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The Lithuanian flag of 300 square meters is flying above the gas link with Western Europe


With the 30th anniversary of restitution of independence of Lithuania approaching, the three-colour state flag of 13 meter width and 23 meter length was hoisted above one of the most important energy projects of recent time – the gas interconnection between Lithuania and Poland under construction. The state flag of Lithuania sized 300 square meters is flying behind Elektrėnai, next to the new international gas pipeline under construction which will interconnect the Baltic and Finnish gas markets with Western Europe.

With the 30th anniversary of restitution of independence of Lithuania approaching, the three-colour state flag of 13 meter width and 23 meter length was hoisted above one of the most important energy projects of recent time – the gas interconnection between Lithuania and Poland under construction. The state flag of Lithuania sized 300 square meters is flying behind Elektrėnai, next to the new international gas pipeline under construction which will interconnect the Baltic and Finnish gas markets with Western Europe.
'We are proud of creating the future of Lithuanian energy sector and securing the freedom of choice for the population and business in the country to have access to safe, affordable, and green energy in the future. Well-developed Lithuanian energy transmission infrastructure integrated into the European Union gas network will serve this purpose', said Nemunas Biknius, acting CEO of gas transmission system operator Amber Grid.
Gas is expected to start flowing through the new GIPL gas pipeline by the end of 2021. The gas pipeline of 508 km length will run from Jauniūnai gas compressor station in Lithuania to Hołowczyce gas compressor station on the Polish side. Amber Grid set an ambitious goal – laying nearly two thirds of the pipeline in 2020, i.e. approximately 100 km of 165 km in total. 
 
In the course of the gas pipeline construction, intense works are carried out every day in the marked route from Širvintos to Alytus - steel pipes are delivered, over 23 km long gas pipeline has already been welded. Special attention is focused on occupational safety. In cooperation with local communities, expectations of the population regarding preservation of the environment and arable land are considered, questions arising to land owners regarding works in their land plot are tackled.
 
Archaeological research explorations, examination of the gas pipeline route regarding explosives are planned for March. Highly complex directional horizontal drilling works are planned in summer when laying the gas pipeline under the largest rivers of Lithuania – the Neris and the Nemunas.
 
Following interconnection of Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia and Finland with the European Union gas network through the GIPL gas pipeline, the number of accesses to alternative gas sources in the Baltic Region will increase ensuring greater security and competition in gas supply.
 
 
 
 
 

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Progress

Following the Construction Contract which entered into force on 30/12/2019, the construction of the GIPL gas interconnection began immediately. We invite you to get acquainted with the progress of this construction work.

JANUARY

On 02/01/2020, the beginning of the construction work was announced. The pipelines' route was marked, a searched for explosives in the pipeline construction area began, archaeological exploration and other works necessary for the start of construction began. For more information.
 
On 13/01/2020, steel pipes from Poland started to be transported to the construction site. For more information.
 
During January:
 
  • Marked 80 km of pipeline’s route.
  • Transported 14 km of pipes.
  • 5 km of pipes were put along the pipeline’s route.
  • 1 km of pipes were welded.
  • Orders were placed for foreign manufacturers to produce taps, the launching and receiving chambers for the monitoring device and other materials required for the pipeline construction that need more time to manufacture.

 

Project promoters

The project is carried out by Lithuanian and Polish natural gas transmission system operators Amber Grid and GAZ-SYSTEM. The European Commission has recognized the GIPL project as a major infrastructure gas supply security contributing significantly to the EU's energy security.
 
About AB „Amber Grid“
 
AB Amber Grid is Lithuanian natural gas transmission system operator. The company is responsible for reliable and safe transmission of gas (it’s transportation by high-pressure
pipelines) to users of the system, as well as for the operation, maintenance and development of the transmission system.
 
About GAZ-SYSTEM
 
Gas transmission system operator GAZ-SYSTEM is responsible for the transmission of  natural gas and management of transmission network in Poland. It is also the owner of the company  Polskie LNG, the operator of the LNG terminal in Świnoujście.

 

Technical data

Gas pipeline length

Total gas pipeline lenght both in Lithuania and Poland

508 km

Gas pipeline lenght in Poland

343 km

Gas pipeline lenght in Lithuania

165 km

Interconnection capacities

PL->LT  27 TWh/year

(2.4 bcm/year)

LT->PL  21 TWh/year

(1.9 bcm/year)

 

PL->LT  74 GWh/day

(6.6 mcm/day)

LT->PL  58 GWh/day

(5.2 mcm/day)

 

Design pressure

in Poland

8.4 MPa

in Lithuania

5.4 MPa

Timeline of the Project

The pipeline is built and operating

Welding of the pipes began

First pipes from Poland started to be transported to the construction site

GIPL Construction Contract entered into force and the construction work on the GIPL pipeline began

Savanorių pr. 28, LT-03116 Vilnius