LNG is natural gas cooled down to below -160 degrees Celsius, then transported via specially designed ships in a liquid state. LNG accounted for around a quarter of gas imports to the EU in 2020, with the rest supplied by pipelines. The main advantage of LNG over pipeline gas is that it can be flexibly imported from a wide range of supply countries, so it enhances rather than diminishes security of supply. The main disadvantage of LNG is that supplies are often more costly, since Europe would be competing directly with Asian countries where LNG is the norm and pipeline infrastructure is rare. There are also environmental concerns involved in the process of transporting gas at very low temperatures over large distances, leading to high greenhouse gas emissions. From the point of view of security of supply, a further consideration is that LNG requires specific import capacity to be built, so the gas can be received and regasified to enter the pipeline network.
LNG capacity per Member State (operational and planned)
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