The International Energy Agency (IEA) has proposed five measures to overcome the gas crisis, which will allow European countries to safely survive the coming winter against the backdrop of reduced fuel supplies from Russia.
In an article published on the IEA website, the head of the agency, Fatih Birol, proposes the introduction of auction platforms for the sale of already contracted gas supplies by EU industrial consumers; minimize its use in the energy sector by temporarily increasing electricity generation from coal and fuel oil; improve coordination between participants in the gas and electricity markets to reduce peak loads; synchronize planning of actions during possible emergencies. The IEA’s latest proposal is to reduce the demand for electricity in private homes by setting standards for air conditioning and putting in place measures to monitor household compliance.
Birol noted that the EU needs to fill its gas storage facilities by 90% in order to safely pass the winter.
“The first immediate step to fill European gas storage to the proper level before winter is to reduce Europe’s current gas consumption and store the saved gas in storage. Some of this is already happening due to sky-high gas prices, but more is needed. Significant additional cuts are needed, to prepare Europe for the coming harsh winter,” Birol said in an author’s article published on the IEA website.
The analysis of the agency showed that within three months, European countries need to additionally save about 12 billion cubic meters. m. of gas. According to Birol, the EU should not rely solely on non-Russian gas supplies.
“These deliveries simply do not exist in the volumes necessary to replace the missing supplies from Russia. This will take place even if gas supplies from Norway and Azerbaijan are carried out at maximum capacity, if supplies from North Africa remain at the level of last year, if domestic gas production in Europe will continue to follow recent trends if LNG inflows continue to increase at the same record pace as in the first half of the year Too many „ifs” This scenario also assumes that Russian gas flows through Nord Stream will resume after maintenance at the same level as before,” Birol said.
He added that if the measures proposed by the IEA are not implemented, Europe will be in a highly vulnerable position and may face much more radical reductions in gas consumption in the future.
As reported, in March, the IEA presented a plan to reduce gas imports from Russia by 50 billion cubic meters. m in just one year. It included not signing new gas contracts with Gazprom, maximizing gas supplies from other sources, accelerating the deployment of solar and wind energy installations, and maximizing the use of existing low-emission energy sources such as nuclear power plants and renewable sources.
Later, Russia itself reduced gas exports to European countries due to the refusal of a number of counterparties to pay for deliveries under the new settlement system – in rubles. In addition, in June, the pumping was reduced due to a delay in the return after maintenance of Siemens equipment for Nord Stream due to Canadian sanctions.