Moscow. Russia has taken a tough decision in the midst of the 6-month-long war with Ukraine (Russia-Ukraine War). Russia has stopped the supply of gas to European countries (Russia Halted Gas Supply). After this, the fear of getting caught in a severe energy crisis has increased in dozens of countries of Europe. European gas operator network ENTSOG said on Wednesday, “Gas delivery to Europe via the Nord Stream pipeline has been stopped.” Earlier, Russian energy giant Gazprom had said, ‘Deliveries will be closed for three days for maintenance work. Due to which the tension in the already existing electricity market will increase.

Russian state energy giant Gazprom said, “There will be an outage for maintenance on Nord Stream 1,” Reuters and BBC reported. This means that between 2 am today and 2 am on Friday, there will be no gas flow in many European countries including Germany. Data from the Nord Stream 1 operator’s website showed zero gas flow between 5 pm and 6 pm. Gas is not being supplied through the pipeline for the last several hours. Russia is already supplying only 20 percent of the gas to Europe through this pipeline. Russia has cited faulty equipment as the reason.

Can Europe survive without Russian natural gas?

European governments fear the outage could extend in retaliation for Western sanctions imposed on Russia after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Russian President Vladimir Putin has been accused of using gas to supply energy as a weapon of war. However, Moscow refuses to do so.

Which European countries take gas from Russia?
Russia supplies most of the gas to Germany. It is followed by Italy, Belarus, Turkey, Netherlands, Hungary, Kazakhstan, Bulgaria, Denmark, Finland and Poland. The gas supply is completely cut off. Others have reduced flow through pipelines, which Moscow has called a “special military operation” in Ukraine. Russia also supplies gas from Asia to China and Japan. If Russia’s gas supply to Europe is stopped, then Italy and Germany will be the most affected, because these two countries import the most gas.

Britain imports only 5% of its gas from Russia and America does not import gas from Russia at all. Poland’s gas reserves are 76% full, but Bulgaria has only 17% gas left. Simone Taglipietra says that this is not a matter of a few days. The problem will happen next winter, so the reserve needs to be replenished.

In a separate dispute over payment, the energy minister in Paris said that Gazprom is using only an excuse to stop natural gas distribution to its French contractor. At the same time, Russian government spokesman Dmitry Peskov said, “There is a guarantee that nothing interferes with the supply, except for the technical problems caused by the sanctions.”

Europe at risk of recession if gas and oil supplies are stopped
Without Russian natural gas, Europe’s economy could be greatly affected. Its effect will depend on which countries use it how much. Meanwhile, many countries are also looking at the option of Russia. The US is ready to deliver an additional 15 billion cubic meters of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to Europe by the end of this year. Despite this, an additional 50 billion cubic meters of gas supply will be needed every year by 2030. Europe can also increase the use of other sources of energy, but doing so will take time and it is not that easy either.

Tags: Europe, Gas Sector, Russia ukraine war, Vladimir Putin

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