Gas Infrastructure Europe (GIE) and its members are responding to the issues posed by the COVID-19 pandemic to ensure that all personnel are looked after and that supplies of gas are uninterrupted.
“I want to express my full recognition and support to these more than fifty thousand of employees of the gas infrastructure industry that work every day to secure gas flows to customers throughout Europe, to meet fluctuating demand and balance the overall energy system”, said Jean-Marc Leroy, GIE President. Indeed, Europe’s gas infrastructure with its extensive transmission pipeline system connecting underground storages and LNG terminals are key elements that guarantee security of supply of energy for all EU citizens, and the continuity of this is of utmost priority.
“Our industry delivers energy to millions of European citizens”, Jean-Marc Leroy stated. “It is our job to respond to all challenges that may affect this, including in exceptional conditions as those that we are witnessing today. From the outset of the current pandemic all our members have established emergency response teams adapting their operations to safeguard their employees and keep the gas flowing. Close communications are being kept between members and authorities on developments and new measures that can be taken.”
Such measures differ between countries and companies but some examples include no physical meetings and home working. For essential staff in the office, physical separation, single work stations in separate rooms, strict hygiene precautions and daily workplace disinfection have been introduced. Essential crews in the dispatch centres and in the field are also following similar separation and hygiene measures and have been assigned rosters that minimise contact with others. All commuting and field trips have been minimised and single-car travel is used where possible. Back-up teams are on stand-by in case of emergency.
Jean-Marc Leroy stated, “In this unprecedented situation, we have adapted our ways of working to ensure business continuity whilst looking after our employees. In the same vein, we ensure a continuous dialogue with our stakeholders and the European Commission to help define a robust Green Deal that ensures achievement of climate goals, on the one hand, and economic resilience of Europe, on the other.”