Germany prepares for ‘alarm stage’ of emergency gas plan - media reports
Die Welt, Bloomberg
The German government looks set to move its national gas emergency plan to "alarm" level, Die Welt and Bloomberg report. Germany has been at the “early warning” stage since March 30 following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. The security of supply is currently guaranteed, but the situation is serious, a government spokesperson told Welt. Triggering the second stage of the three-stage emergency plan could lead to a change in the law that would allow utilities to pass on cost increases to homes and businesses. It would likely also boost the use of coal-fired power generation to minimize gas consumption. The third and highest emergency level would allow the state to take full control of the country’s distribution network.
The government is aiming to reduce gas use in order to protect reserves after Russia last week cut supply by about 60 percent through the Nord Stream pipeline. Economy minister Robert Habeck has accused Russia of seeking to unsettle the markets, while Russian state-owned company Gazprom attributed the move to technical problems caused by Western sanctions. Germany is aiming to fill gas storage facilities to 80 percent by 1 October and 90 percent by 1 November in order to have a safe supply for the winter months, Bloomberg noted.