DURING the recent gas crisis, 15 to 20 percent of the daily drawdown of the gas in Slovak storage reservoirs was still going abroad even after a state of emergency was announced in Slovakia, the Regulatory Office for Network Industries (ÚRSO) stated in a report released on January 27.
The report, presented to the Slovak government, drew attention to several crucial problems with Slovak gas storage, the TASR newswire reported.
One problem, ÚRSO said, arose when Slovakia’s major gas utility Slovenský Plynárensky Priemysel (SPP) leased its storage capacities to foreign companies last year.
“When the emergency was announced, no other legislative possibilities to alleviate the consequences of the reduced supplies to Slovakia were used and the natural gas from the storage reserves was supplied for use outside Slovak territory,” ÚRSO wrote in the report, as quoted by the SITA newswire.
Another problem identified by ÚRSO was the fact that during the crisis SPP used the gas storage facilities of foreign companies rather than its own capacities in Dolné Bojanovce, located in the Czech Republic.
As a solution, ÚRSO recommended introducing government regulation of storage and extraction of natural gas from reserves. Energy security could be ensured in the future by strengthening the regulatory role of the state, a move that would be fully in accordance with European legislation, SITA reported.
Another proposal suggested by ÚRSO’s report includes building new gas storage capacity in Slovakia.