Washington D.C. – Tomorrow, the European Council is expected to vote on proposed changes to the European Union Gas Directive to impose additional regulations on major gas pipelines entering EU territory that do not comply with current EU rules. The amendment is important because the Russian state-owned gas link, Nord Stream 2, currently does not adhere to existing EU security and fairness standards. Implementing these guidelines would strengthen energy security in Europe and send a strong message to Moscow in their continued attempts to dominate the region’s energy. House Foreign Affairs Lead Republican Michael McCaul (R-TX), Chairman Eliot Engel (D-NY), and Ranking Member of the Europe, Eurasia, Energy and Environment Subcommittee, Adam Kinzinger (R-IL), released the following statements ahead of tomorrow’s expected vote.

Lead Republican McCaul: “Moscow has weaponized its natural resources to once again sow discord amongst its neighbors to the West, undermine Ukraine’s independence, and expand its power in global energy markets. Our European partners have a bold opportunity to free themselves of malign influence from Russia in their repeated attempts to monopolize the region’s energy sector. I urge our European allies to adopt the proposed changes to the EU Gas Directive and send a message that Russia will not be allowed to write the rules of the road when it comes to energy accessibility and security. Europe must commit to diversifying their energy security portfolio by creating new and innovative energy sources independent from Russian influence. This is a good first step towards achieving a more transparent and secure energy future for the continent.”

Chairman Engel: “The United States and our European partners need to stand together against Russia’s attempts to undermine Western unity. One of Putin’s signature tactics is to use energy as a weapon against its neighbors, and the Nord Stream 2 pipeline is a national security threat because it would make Europe even more dependent on Russian energy sources. That’s why I strongly support the current efforts of the European Union to make sure that Russian gas pipelines face the same transparency and regulatory requirements as all other projects in Europe.  We look forward to expanding cooperation with our European allies and partners to enhance energy security and diversify European sources of energy.”

Subcommittee Ranking Member Kinzinger: “For years, Russia has tried to use energy dependence as a means to put undue political influence on our European allies. Through intimidation and coercion, Putin has weaponized natural gas across the region. The continuation of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline would only further endanger millions of Europeans, and pose heavy security risks. The United States must stand with our allies and firmly oppose its completion.”