According to the European Commission’s plan, in order to prevent a gas crisis in winter, it will be necessary to lower the demand for the raw material, also by households. The draft document has already been published online, but the plan is to be officially presented on Wednesday.
“Europe must now prepare for potential further disruptions – even if it cuts completely – Russian gas supplies. The European Council in its conclusions of 31 May and 23 June called for this preparation to be carried out as a matter of urgency, in particular to allow for closer coordination with Member States and between them “- we read in the introduction to the draft EC communication.
According to data from the Commission, the EU gas system “more than compensated” a shortage of 25 billion cubic meters due to reduced imports of Russian gas, thanks to 35 billion cubic meters of liquefied gas and imported via pipelines from other countries. However, the simulations show that the complete cut-off of supplies from Russia the EU will not be able to fill its warehouses to 80%, which in turn will mean that in winter – in the entire Community – 20 billion cubic meters of gas will be lacking.
“Demand reduction plan” for gas
Therefore, the Commission will propose a “Demand Reduction Plan” that will reduce gas consumption by both individual consumers and essential service companies and industry.
“Coordinated actions now will be more profitable and less destructive to our everyday life and economy than ad hoc actions later, when gas supplies may run out” – reads the document.
The EC wants EU countries to send individual consumers campaigns encouraging them to save gas by reducing the heating temperature to 19 degrees Celsius.
The Commission will also urge Member States to consider shifting electricity from gas to coal and nuclear fuel where possible.
At the same time, it will stipulate that a temporary switch from gas to coal “may increase” emissions “of greenhouse gases, and that renewables remain a top priority. It will also propose to relax the emission limits for industry to give it more room for maneuver.
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