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VESTAS

Danish wind turbine maker Vestas pulls out of Russia

Following a slew of Western companies, Danish wind turbine manufacturer Vestas said Tuesday it would withdraw from Russia, where it has two factories, over the country's invasion of Ukraine.

Vestas HQ in Aarhus
Vestas HQ in Aarhus. File photo: Henning Bagger/Ritzau Scanpix

The move was announced as the company held its annual general meeting.

“In light of the invasion, Vestas stopped new commercial activity in Russia in early March. After this decision, Vestas began reviewing different scenarios,” the company said in a statement sent to AFP.

Vestas added that the company condemned the invasion and “the atrocities reportedly committed by the Russian army”.

“Following this review and how the situation has evolved, we have taken the decision to withdraw from Russia,” it added.

According to the company, Vestas has installed wind power capacity of 1 gigawatt (GW) in Russia, compared to the 151 GW installed in 86 markets globally.

Vestas has two factories in Russia, which have mainly supplied wind projects in the country.

“The withdrawal aims to ensure the safety and livelihood of our employees in Russia as well as safeguard Vestas’ interests through an orderly transfer of our business in compliance with international and local law, which entails certain activities may continue during a transition period,” the company said.

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NORD STREAM

Swedish institute says underwater ‘blasts’ recorded prior to Nord Stream leaks

Two underwater blasts were recorded prior to the discovery of three leaks on the Nord Stream pipelines linking Russia and Europe, a Swedish seismological institute said Tuesday as the unexplained leaks raised suspicions of sabotage.

Swedish institute says underwater 'blasts' recorded prior to Nord Stream leaks

The Swedish National Seismic Network recorded two “massive releases of energy” shortly prior to, and near the location of, the gas leaks off the coast of the Danish island of Bornholm, Peter Schmidt, an Uppsala University seismologist, told news wire AFP.

“The first happened at 2:03am just southeast of Bornholm with a magnitude of 1.9. Then we also saw one at 7:04pm on Monday night, another event a little further north and that seems to have been a bit bigger. Our calculations show a magnitude of 2.3,” Schmidt said.

“With energy releases this big there isn’t much else than a blast that could cause it,” he added.

WATCH: Baltic Sea foams with gas from broken Nord Stream pipeline

Schmidt explained that since the releases were “very sudden” and not a “slow collapse”, the events were “in all likelihood some type of blasts.”

The Norwegian Seismic Array (NORSAR) also confirmed it had registered “a smaller explosion” in the early hours of Monday, “followed by a more powerful on Monday evening.”

The Nord Stream 1 and 2 pipelines have been at the centre of geopolitical tensions in recent months as Russia cut gas supplies to Europe in suspected retaliation against Western sanctions following its invasion of Ukraine.

While the pipelines, which are operated by a consortium majority-owned by Russian gas giant Gazprom, are not currently in operation, they both still contain gas which has been leaking out since Monday.

Photos taken by the Danish military on Tuesday showed large masses of bubbles on the surface of the water emanating from the three leaks located in Sweden’s and Denmark’s economic zones, spreading from 200 to 1,000 metres in diameter.

Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen said Copenhagen was not ruling out sabotage of the gas pipelines between Russia and Europe.

READ ALSO: Gas leaks cause bubbling up in Baltic Sea as Danish PM says ‘unlikely due to chance’

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