The tanker “Maria Energy”, left, loaded with liquefied natural gas, is moored at the floating terminal, the special ship “Hoegh Esperanza”, in Wilhelmshaven, Germany, Tuesday Jan. 3, 2023. For the first time since the terminal opened in Wilhelmshaven, a tanker has arrived there with a full cargo of liquefied natural gas (LNG). (Sina Schuldt/dpa via AP)

BERLIN (AP) — The first regular shipment of liquefied natural gas from the United States arrived in Germany on Tuesday, part of a wide-reaching effort to help the country replace energy supplies it previously received from Russia.

The tanker vessel Maria Energy arrived at the North Sea port of Wilhelmshaven, where its shipment of LNG will be converted back into gas at a special floating terminal that was inaugurated last month by German Chancellor Olaf Scholz.

Germany has rushed to find a replacement for Russian gas supplies following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. The facility in Wilhelmshaven is one of several such terminals being put in place to help avert an energy supply shortage.

Germany has also temporarily reactivated old oil- and coal-fired power stations and extended the life of its last three nuclear power plants until mid-April.

Environmental campaigners said they planned to protest the arrival of the Maria Energy, arguing Germany shouldn’t be importing fossil fuels, particularly gas obtained through fracking.

Reserves in Germany’s gas storage facilities rose above 90% at the start of the year as unseasonably warm temperatures across much of central Europe reduced heating demand.

The Associated Press


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