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Cold Winter In Hell Coming For Europe

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Europe Told To Prepare For Russia Turning Off Gas

The head of the International Energy Agency has warned that Russia may stop supplying gas to Europe this winter.

Fatih Birol says he believes a complete shutdown is not the most likely scenario but that Europe needs to work on contingency plans just in case.

In recent weeks, several European countries said they received significantly less Russian gas than they expected.

Russian officials deny it’s deliberate and have blamed technical issues.

Before the invasion of Ukraine, Europe imported about 40 percent of its natural gas from Russia but that figure has now fallen to about 20 percent.

‘Strategic’ Reductions

Mr Birol says he believes that recent Russian reductions in gas supply are “strategic”. The falls are making it harder for European countries to fill up their gas storage and increasing Russia’s leverage this winter.

“I wouldn’t rule out Russia continuing to find different issues here and there, and continuing to find excuses to further reduce gas deliveries to Europe and maybe even cut it off completely,” Mr Birol told BBC News.

Last week the flow of natural gas through Nord Stream 1, one of the main pipelines from Russia to Europe, was just 40 percent of capacity. Many experts are sceptical of the Russian explanation that this was caused by “technical issues”.

Across Europe, shortfalls in gas supply continue to be reported. On Friday the Italian firm energy firm Eni said that it had only received half of the gas that it was expecting from the Russian state-controlled gas giant Gazprom, while Slovakia and Austria have also reported falls.

France says it has received no Russian gas from Germany since 15 June while Poland, Bulgaria, Finland, Denmark and the Netherlands have had their Russian gas deliveries suspended after they refused a demand to pay in Russian roubles.

Last month European countries agreed to try to protect themselves from the volatility of gas prices by filling up their storage facilities. They jointly committed to reaching at least 80 percent capacity by November, with the latest data suggesting they are at about 55%.

Mr Birol said the ongoing gas crisis now justified emergency short-term measures to reduce demand, such as increasing the use of coal-fired power stations, and if possible prolonging the life of nuclear power plants. If there was a complete shutdown of Russian gas supply, he says drastic measures may be needed.

I don’t exclude the possibility that Europe will need a planned and orderly rationing of gas,” Mr Birol says.

“I don’t say this is the base scenario, but looking at the last several months, if not several years, the experiences we have had with Russia as an energy partner, this is a scenario we cannot afford to exclude for the time being.”

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8 COMMENTS

  1. Seems Canada has some serious engineering kit sent there by Gasprom to be refurbished. They’re not sending it back due to the sanctions Canada has on
    Russia. Only problem is that it means Russia has had to reduce the gas supply to Europe so that other parts of the gas pipe network don’t fail under stress.
    So Europe is getting less gas from Russia due to the sanctions they imposed, and they blame Russia for it.
    The collective leadership of the west has a combined IQ of a room temperature. I don’t think it makes much difference in the end if it’s measured in C or F.

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  2. Europe is going to feelthe Russian cooling quicker than we will feel the jaspinda cooling here!
    There’s is going to be this coming winter!
    Ours will be longer, unless jaspinda gets frightened by Europe closing down next winter!
    Business closed, supermarket queues like in Russia, people dying in their homes, parks and recreation areas been denuded for firewood, dead cars littering the roadside with no electricity to charge them!
    You had better be busy cindy, what with your jollies, overseas, wedding, etc before christmas.
    Seen as you are hoping for a plum job overseas, before the election!
    Sorry folks, I got a bit carried away!

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  3. Gas is one issue.

    The other very big problem will be the shortage of diesel.
    Many of the refineries are set to refine the consistent blend of Russian Crude oil.

    It is not so simple to pour in another crude oil, and expect it to come out with you need.
    Necessary adjustments can not be done quickly, and that all takes time.
    The different batches of oil will need more tinkering to flow right, all taking time.

    So No work, No or little money, so they can not afford gas any way.

    Just wait until the EU orders tankers of diesel, destined to New Zealand, to head back to Europe.

    It is diesel, still an essential for freight, as trucks carry food to supermarkets, so called raw materials, parts,
    for further processing at factories, into what ever may be deemed essentials.

    The designation of essential is all how rationing is worked out.

    Just like in New Zealand, the building of Fletcher’s new gib factory was deemed a non-essential during Covidial lock-downs.

    So the flow of business, production in the EU will hit grid lock, because of little diesel fuel.

    4

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