Permitting Process in Denmark

Permit requirements in Denmark

Permits for construction and operation of pipelines for transportation of hydrocarbons produced outside Danish territory, but located in Danish territorial waters and on the Danish Continental Shelf are required, pursuant to the Continental Shelf Act, the Danish State’s sovereignty over its territorial waters, and Administrative Order on Pipeline Installations.

Applications for such permits must be submitted to the Danish Energy Agency, which manages the applications and issues the permits on behalf of the Danish State.

EIA Procedure in Denmark

A national Danish Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) report is required for Nord Stream 2, and was submitted to the Danish Energy Agency together with the application for the construction permit in April 2017 (Base Case Route). 

An EIA report must as a minimum contain the information listed in the Offshore EIA Administrative Order, including a description of the factors likely to be significantly affected by the project, both inside and outside of Danish territory.

The aim of the EIA procedure is to evaluate the environmental impacts of a project, to ensure that consistent information on the impacts is available during planning and decision-making and to provide the public with information and the opportunity to participate in the process.

The EIA report describes the main characteristics and technical solutions of the project with a comprehensive assessment of impacts. The report includes assessments of transboundary impacts from the project in Denmark to neighbouring national jurisdictions. In addition, the EIA includes measures to prevent and mitigate potential adverse environmental impacts.

Due to an amendment of the Continental Shelf Act (1 January 2018) which provides the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs the right to recommend, based on wide-ranging considerations, whether an application for infrastructure projects, such as gas transmission pipelines traversing territorial waters shall or shall not be further handled by the Danish Energy Agency, Nord Stream 2 AG decided to explore alternative routes outside of Danish territorial waters. 

Based on the survey works, engineering and environmental assessments carried out, a viable alternative route was identified outside Danish territorial waters only passing through the Danish exclusive economic zone north-west of Bornholm. On 10 August 2018 Nord Stream 2 submitted an application for construction together with an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) for the alternative route north-west of Bornholm (North-Western Route).

Denmark and Poland have since then resolved a long-standing border dispute over an area located south-east of Bornholm, making it available for Nord Stream 2 and other infrastructure projects. An application for construction and an EIA for the alternative route south-east of Bornholmwas thus filed on April 15, 2019 (South-Eastern Route)