EU achieves 90% natural gas storage target ahead of schedule

Natural gas reserves in the EU have been filled to 90 percent of their capacity, as announced by Kadri Simson, the European Commissioner for Energy. This achievement comes well ahead of the November 1st target date set by Brussels for implementation, a deadline introduced in response to the crisis triggered by Russia’s war against Ukraine. The European Union’s response to this crisis was the passage of a law mandating the maintenance of 90 percent gas storage capacity by November 1st each year.

Gas storage capacity in the EU as of August 17, according to data from Gas Infrastructure Europe

In addition to ensuring ample gas reserves, the countries within the Union have collectively committed to a 15 percent reduction in gas consumption between April of this year and the close of March 2024. This comprehensive effort highlights the EU’s determination to bolster energy security and diminish dependency on external sources amidst volatile geopolitical situations.

Kadri Simson, emphasizing the significance of these accomplishments, noted that the European Union is now well-prepared for the impending winter. The European Commission’s estimations indicate that, with the current storage fill levels, the EU possesses adequate gas reserves to address approximately a third of its winter energy requirements.

The swift replenishment of storage facilities signifies that the bloc finds itself “far more stable than it was at the same time last year”, when Russia’s invasion of Ukraine triggered a surge in energy prices, noted EU Commissioner Kadri Simson.

As per the European Commission’s latest report, the European Union has currently utilized 90.12 percent of its storage capacity, equivalent to 93 billion cubic meters of natural gas.

Storage levels exhibit variations across different EU countries. Spain boasts a capacity at 99 percent, France stands at 83 percent, and Latvia holds 77 percent. This cooperative and forward-looking approach positions the EU favorably, not only for the upcoming winter but also in terms of its broader energy resilience strategy.

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