Germans Will Have to Cut Gas Consumption 30% Or They Will Run Out The Daily Financial Trends

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According to a new energy study by the Ariadne project at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, Germans are going to have to cut their gas consumption even more than they have already if they want to avoid shortages this coming winter.

According to researcher Gunnar Luderer, “Pre-crisis gas consumption needs to come down by 30%” if the public wants to avoid supply interruptions that will leave some without gas at various periods during the winter.

The report recommends the public adapt their behaviors, such as by lowering room temperatures and employing intelligent controls which will turn down heating when it is not needed. As the report notes, private homes, and commercial trade and services are the biggest users of natural gas in Germany, using it primarily for heat and hot water. However the report points out this segment of users has only slightly reduced its consumption.

Over the warmer summer, gas usage was down by 23% compared to the five-year average. however September’s official preliminary data shows a variation from a 19% decrease compared to the five-year average, to an increase of 16%.

Noting that in August gas was ten times as expensive than the historical average, the report bemoans the effects high gas prices will have on the economy as winter usage builds.

The problems in Germany are not limited to heating however. Russia supplied roughly 50% of Germany’s natural gas imports in recent years, supplying cheap pipeline gas which did not require the infrastructure or cost of traditional imports, and which could be used both for heating, and electricity generation. However as Russian supplies became interrupted following the onset of conflict in Ukraine, many nuclear plants were shutdown in France due to maintenance issues, and the summer drought lowered river levels in Germany, creating logistical issues for coal delivery. As heating rose due to gas shortage, electrical generation saw a perfect storm, which caused it to spike even more.

Now Germans have to decide if they can cut back a little all over now, or if they will have to endure periodic complete cuts to heating and electricity in various places throughout the winter.

The Daily Financial Trends