Globalization means that many countries and regions, which quasi have hitherto been pre-industrialized, are striving to strengthen their economic base by bringing them closer to the international level of industry. Thereby the coverage of energy and water requirements via pipelines always plays a decisive role.
And it is not just the transport lines, which transport oil, gas and water partly over many thousands of kilometres, but also the distribution and drainage networks, which must be built and operated economically, reliably, safely and compatible for the environment.
The civilized world has constructed some 3.5 million km of high pressure pipelines for oil, gas and water over the last 100 years - about 25,000 km of new pipelines are added every year. On the side of medium and low pressure pipe networks for gas and water distribution, district heating and cooling as well as sewers for waste water disposal the estimate will be about roughly 25 million km.
Considerations today assume that the demand for pipelines, pipes and sewers is even a multiple of the current pipe lengths. Despite the strong use of renewable energies, the highly industrialized regions of North America and Western Europe with the largest existing pipe lengths still play an important role here, since the energy starter is still high. Despite the increased use of LNG, for example, there are vehement efforts in Europe for possible natural gas routes from Russia, Azerbaijan, North Africa and the Middle East.
In North America the routes from north to south are fiercely contested.
There is a great need for additional pipelines in China, where the government is planning to double its use of natural gas. There have been some 70,000 km of new pipelines in the last two planning periods of the programs "West to East", "North to South", "Offshore goes onshore" and "Supply from nearby". But in the coming years, however, pending demand will be much higher.
Other regions in which we are expecting in the near future major developments in pipeline construction are Middle East, West Africa, Iran and India.