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14 Jul 2022, 13:18
Kerstine Appunn

Europe can be free of Russian energy imports within a few years, but gas shortages this winter – researchers

Clean Energy Wire

Europe will be faced with gas shortages until new import infrastructure, a reduction of gas consumption, as well as better coordinated cooperation between European countries are in place to substitute the shortfall of Russian gas deliveries, a team of researchers from the “Energysystems of the Future” (ESYS) have found in a new paper. The researchers looked at the short- and medium-term effects of a complete or partial import stops of Russian energy commodities to Europe; they found that if Russian gas imports cease in the next few months, up to 30 percent of natural gas demand in Germany and up to 25 percent in Europe could not be met at peak times in winter, based on 2021 consumption. “The deficit is due to a lack of transport capacities. Even with sufficient availability of natural gas, there is a lack of LNG terminals and pipelines to land and distribute the gas in Europe,” they said. The solutions, that could make Europe independent of Russian imports in the next few years, would be the upgrading and construction of the European gas and LNG infrastructure, the reduction of gas consumption in buildings and industry, and the expansion of renewable energies. European cooperation would also be required across these operations. As prices for energy are expected to remain high even in the long term, measures to protect consumers and industrial competitiveness, as well as a common European purchasing policy for natural gas, are important measures.

The ESYS project is a joint initiative of the academies of science acatech, Leopoldina, and the Union of Academies of Sciences and Humanities for a secure, affordable and sustainable energy supply.

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