The Pipeline War – Fears of an energy blackout!


The news that the main Russian gas transmission hub through Ukraine has been shut down has caused alarm in Europe. The energy blackout scenario is no longer σίας science fiction, but it can become a reality, causing painful side effects in the European economy. From the battlefields the war is now transferred to the pipelines.

The Sokhranifka plant, which is located in the Luhansk region and is responsible for channeling 1/3 of Russian gas, was shut down yesterday. This practically means that Europe is currently deprived of huge quantities of natural gas (up to 32.6 million cubic meters per day), which can obviously lead to significant energy shortages and at the same time sow panic in the energy market, launching again into European gas prices.

When asked why the Ukrainian station is shut down, which has a direct impact on Europe, Kyiv and Moscow have engaged in a peculiar blame game regarding the shut down. The Ukrainians invoke reasons of force majeure, namely the war in the greater Lugansk region. “Due to force majeure, the transport of Russian gas to Europe through the Sohranifka station will be stopped from today, Wednesday, May 11. “At the moment, officials can not exercise operational and technological control over Novopskov CS and other assets located in these areas,” said a statement from Ukraine’s Gas Transmission System Operator.

The Ukrainians, in fact, claim that they had repeatedly warned Russia that the actions of the troops in the Lugansk region could lead to the closure of gas transmission hubs in Europe.
The alternative proposed by Kyiv to Moscow to transfer the flow of gas to a new entry point was rejected by Gazprom, which argued that the project was technically impossible to carry out.

In any case, the new development coming from the burning zone of Ukraine, intensifies the concern in Europe, which is preparing for the worst…

The Commission’s emergency plan

In fact, Brussels has reportedly reached an emergency plan, which will be activated in the event that Moscow pushes the energy “counter” and closes gas supplies to Europe. The plan is based on two main pillars, the first of which is to ensure Europe’s supply and energy efficiency and the second of which is to implement specific actions aimed at reducing consumption.

The first axis is covered, as mentioned in the plan, by the implementation of the Regulation on Security of Security, which has entered into force in 2017 – and may, under certain conditions, be extended to oil. The main goal is to ensure energy efficiency in major industries, as well as in vital public services and households.

Of particular interest are the actions proposed by the Commission to reduce energy consumption. Among other things, the European Commission is in favor of teleworking up to three times a week, which could lead to savings of 500,000 barrels of oil.

It also suggests car sharing with other people, as well as car-free Sundays in cities, which means 380,000 barrels less.

Also to save energy, it is proposed to limit the number of air travel for business purposes, as well as the use of electric vehicles and trains instead of airplanes.

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