Secure Transition

Energy security is a perennial concern in the CEE region due to its geopolitical positioning. 

The landscape, however, has evolved significantly, particularly in the wake of the full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine in 2022. The war has elevated the importance of energy security to unprecedented levels, necessitating a re-evaluation of supply routes and strategic partnerships.

Post-February 2022 changes in the direction of supply routes have been both visible and significant, reflecting the region’s swift and bold response to geopolitical shifts. The ongoing decisions to establish new routes underscore the region’s commitment to shaping future security dynamics. Beyond resource supply, the Secure Transition involves fostering increased cooperation within the region. Notably, the development of interconnectors and transmission infrastructure for gas, electricity and oil (in the case of landlocked countries) emerges as a critical aspect of fortifying the region’s energy security. Additionally the role of storage, which contributes to mitigating supply risks and enhancing overall resilience, is being revaluated.

Following the outbreak of full-scale war in Ukraine natural gas supply routes have shifted towards LNG

The war in Ukraine has clearly shown that dependence on a single natural gas supplier and lack of diversification is a very risky strategy. Limited interconnections and supply routes have exacerbated the energy crisis. Efforts to alleviate these problems are now being undertaken at a record pace – number of investments are taking place and many more are being considered. To avoid stranded assets, a thoughtful approach needs to be worked out. Thorough discussions on how to on the one hand maximise utilisation of infrastructure to avoid overbuild (and associated high costs) and ensure resilience on the other are necessary. It should be stressed that this is not just a question of import possibilities but also e.g. storage.

The revision of the approach to energy security presents challenges to the region but simultaneously opens up new development opportunities. Transitioning from traditional, fossil fuel-based energy sources to modern, sustainable technologies is not only a step towards meeting global climate objectives but is also a pivotal element in constructing a resilient energy system for future generations.

The Baltic Sea emerges as crucial for both a green and secure transition

We emphasise that the Baltic Sea is home to key infrastructure for the supply of oil, gas and electricity. There are many existing and planned nuclear power plants near the Baltic Sea. Secondly, offshore wind capacity is planned to be installed largely in this sea basin. There are two oil ports serving refineries in Poland, Lithuania and Germany.

In addition, new LNG/FSRU terminals are planned to increase the capacity of the three existing terminals at Świnoujście, Klaipėda and Lubmin. Sub-sea cables connect the countries in the basin. Lastly, work has begun on the Harmony link between Lithuania and Poland, bringing closer the prospect of integrating the Baltic networks into the European grid.