Austrian explosion hits European gas markets

For illustration purposes only (Image courtesy of Gas Connect Austria)

An explosion on Tuesday morning at the major European gas hub at Baumgarten in Austria killed one person and injured 18 others, causing a surge in Austrian, Italian and the UK gas prices.

Italy has also reportedly declared a state of emergency due to a lack of gas supplies.

The Baumgarten plant was shut down in “a controlled state and is offline,” according to Gas Connect Austria, which operates the Baumgarten site.

Gas Connect Austria said the fire, which started after the explosion occurred at 9:00 am local time at the Baumgarten site had been brought under control.

Images showed huge flames rising out of the plant – situated northeast of the Austrian capital Vienna.

Baumgarten is the key entry point for Russian gas into Austria and onward to Italy.

Slovakia’s main gas transit route to Austria was also suspended after the fire, Slovak pipeline operator Eustream said.

Russia’s Gazprom Export said it was working “on redistribution of gas flows and does its best to secure uninterrupted gas supplies to the clients on this transport direction.”

Front-month gas in the UK rose as much as 23% to 73.7 pence a therm ($9.86 a million British thermal units) on ICE Futures Europe.

The Italian wholesale day-ahead price surged 97% to a record high of 47 euros per megawatt-hour.

 

LNG World News Staff

 

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