First gas flows from Germany’s new LNG terminal | DW News

2022. Deutsche Welle. The opening of Germany’s first LNG import terminal is a milestone in the country’s plans to find alternate sources of natural gas. The terminal, floating off the North Sea coast, was built in a record time of just under 10 months.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz greenlit the LNG projects on February 27 this year — just days after Russian President Vladimir Putin launched the invasion of Ukraine. The facility opened off of Wilhelmshaven is slated to feed an estimated 6% of Germany’s gas demand into the energy grid each year.

German government, customers search for solutions as Russia cuts gas supply

June 2022. Deutsche Welle. Moscow has reduced gas supply to Germany, Europe’s biggest economy, by 40 percent. German Vice Chancellor Robert Habeck called on citizens to reduce their energy consumption.

He said: ‘Every kilowatt hour helps.’ His goal: to refill storage tanks before winter comes. Currently, they are about 58 percent full. The government also encourages utility companies to extend the use of coal-fired power plants. Right now, Germany has 70 such plants that run on hard and lignite coal.

Another solution would be to extend the use of nuclear power. The country still has 3 nuclear power plants which are supposed to be shut down at the end of the year. An industry group now says they could remain on the grid to reduce the dependency on Russian gas. Meanwhile, consumers are turning to energy consultants to figure out how to cut heating and electricity costs.

Germany’s emergency gas plan explained

The cut in Russian gas supplies has Germany enacting the second phase of their gas emergency plan. What do these plans entail?

On 23 June, Germany triggered the second stage of their emergency gas plan in response to the cut in Russian gas supplies since 14 June and the high price levels. A gas crisis team, which was already set up when the first emergency level was declared in late March, meets daily to monitor and assess the situation.  

While the security of supply is currently still guaranteed, “the situation is tense”, according to the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action. If the Russian gas supply remains low, it will complicate achieving storage level targets by winter. Federal Minister for Economic Affairs and Climate Protection Robert Habeck called the current situation “serious”, referring to gas as a “scarce commodity”.