By the winter of 2022, Europe should be fully prepared to stop the export of Russian gas, Fatih Birol, head of the International Energy Agency, warned in an interview with The Financial Times.
According to the expert, those additional measures that European countries are already taking and will begin to take to reduce gas consumption (we are talking mainly about increasing electricity generation at coal-fired power plants) are justified by the scale of the crisis, despite the threat of rising carbon dioxide emissions.
The head of the IEA also assured that additional CO2 emissions from coal combustion could well be offset by accelerating the pace of Europe's reduction of dependence on fossil fuels and increasing the capacity of renewable energy sources.
It is known that the German authorities have already decided to introduce additional measures to save gas and speed up the filling of gas storage facilities due to the reduction in Russian fuel supplies.
These measures include increasing electricity generation from coal-fired thermal power plants; opening an additional credit line for €15 billion through the state bank KfW; payment of compensations to industrial consumers who have reduced the use of gas.
So the Minister for Economic Affairs and Climate Protection of Germany, Robert Habek, said that by winter the gas storage facilities should be filled by more than 90%. Today, gas reserves in this country are about 57%. According to the reports of the Gas Infrastructure of Europe, on June 9, the gas storage facilities of European countries were half full.
Not far behind Germany is the Netherlands, which, in order to reduce natural gas consumption, increase electricity generation at coal-fired power plants. Today, to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, all four operating coal-fired power plants in the Netherlands are operating at only 35% of their maximum capacity, and the Dutch government plans to increase this limit.