VIENNA, Feb. 8 (UPI) -- The Nabucco pipeline company announced it submitted an environmental report to Turkey for the planned Turkish section of the natural gas pipeline.
Nabucco Gas Pipeline International said it submitted the assessment for the 426-mile section planned between Ankara and the Turkish border with Bulgaria.
"The submission of the EIA report is an important step forward in the approval process and realization of the project," the company said in a statement.
Nabucco is one of the projects in the so-called Southern Corridor of natural gas transit networks meant to deliver non-Russian gas to European consumers. It's the most ambitious of the three pipelines in the Southern Corridor and critics have questioned whether the finances make sense.
The company said the pipeline could connect European consumers to natural gas suppliers in the Caspian region and the Middle East. An environmental study for the section from Ankara to the Turkish border with Georgia and from the Turkish city of Sivas to the Iraqi border will be submitted to the Turkish government later this year.
Nabucco would run from the Turkish border to Austria through a route planned through Bulgaria, Romania and Hungary. Nabucco doesn't have firm agreements from potential suppliers, though managers insist it's one of the better options for European energy security.