Germans were warned last week that they will face a gas shortage if there’s a cold winter next year given that storages are only required to be filed 40 percent by the end of January 2024.
RT, the Russian news outlet, reported that the warning came from the country’s Gas Storage Association, or INES. The association warned that given the current levels, the only way Germany doesn’t have some kind of shortage is if temperatures are warm.
“If temperatures are medium to cold, the gas storage facilities will be heavily or completely emptied,” the association said.
Sebastian Bleschke, the association’s managing director, warned that the gas capacity has not been fully restored in the country and said there is a pressing need to expand the country’s infrastructure that could “be activated at short notice and actually provide additional gas in the coming winter.”
No More Nuclear Plants
Last week, Germany carried out its plans to close down three of its last operating nuclear plants, claiming that the move “makes Germany safer and avoids additional high-level radioactive waste.”
Germany’s Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Nuclear Safety, and Consumer Protection told CNBC in a statement that “the risks of nuclear power are ultimately unmanageable. No insurance in the world covers the potentially catastrophic extent of damage from a nuclear accident.”
The statement said that “the nuclear phase-out law was passed with a broad, nonpartisan majority” back in 2011.
Critics called the move baffling.
“While many countries in the world are even expanding nuclear power, Germany is doing the opposite,” Markus Soeder, Bavaria’s conservative governor, told The Associated Press. “We need every possible form of energy. Otherwise, we risk higher electricity prices and businesses moving away.”
TRENDPOST: The people are paying the price for the sanctions NATO and the United States have imposed on Russia. According to business-standard.com, Consumer electricity prices in Germany are to rise by around 60 percent in 2023, the country’s Association of Local Public Utilities (VKU) said. Consumer electricity prices in Germany are to rise by around 60 percent in 2023, the country’s Association of Local Public Utilities (VKU) said.
TRENDPOST: Germany approved a draft bill that will ban any new oil and gas heating systems beginning in 2024 as the country moves to green energy. (See “SPOTLIGHT, TOP 2023 TREND: GOING GREEN” 10 Jan 2023.)
The Financial Times reported that the opposition party blasted the bill and said it will punish homeowners with “incalculable costs.”
The bill calls for all new heating systems to run on 65 percent renewable energy. There are some exemptions, including homeowners over 80 and the country’s poorest. A poll out of Germany found that 78 percent of Germans are opposed to the bill.
The paper quoted the bill as saying, “Germany can neither achieve its climate goals nor quickly reduce its dependence on fossil fuels without a rapid sea change in the heating of buildings.”
Germany wants to achieve climate neutrality by 2035. Euractiv reported that Germany has long relied on gas to keep its manufacturing economy rolling and noted that its gas grid “boasts a length of more than 500,000 kilometers – enough to go around the world more than 12 times.”
Germany’s Free Democratic Party called the bill, which will appear before the Bundestag in June, is the equivalent of an “atomic bomb” for the country, The Guardian reported.
Christian Lindner, the leader of the party and country’s finance minister, said it would blow up Germany’s tight debt control mechanisms, according to the paper.
Just weeks after Seymour Hersh published his blockbuster report on the Nord Stream pipelines sabotage allegedly committed by the Biden administration to force Germany to remain committed to U.S. sanctions against Russia over Ukraine, President Joe Biden praised German Chancellor Olaf Scholz for “diversifying away from Russian energy sources.”
Hersh said the Biden administration carried out the attack on the pipelines because the “fear was Europe would walk away from the war.” He said one of the most repeated claims by military officials and politicians in Washington is that NATO is somehow closer than ever, but Russian oil and gas always “scared the hell out of Washington” because it could turn Western European countries closer to Moscow.
Hersh said President Joe Biden’s thought process was likely, “I’m in a big war with Ukraine, it’s not looking good. I want to make sure I get German and West European support and I know winter’s coming…and if it’s going to be bad, I don’t want the Germans to say, ‘We’re going to check out because we’re getting massacred with no cheap fuel and our economy is going to go bonkers…We’re going to check out and we’re going to open up the gas line.’ So he took away that option.”