The outcome of weeks of inquiries into all possible disruption scenarios should Russia decide to partially or completely disrupt gas supplies to the EU shows Europe is now energy secure for the winter season, said European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen on Wednesday.
Von der Leyen said during periods of high demand, Russian energy giant Gazprom has been restricting its gas supplies to Europe.
However, she declared the EU is also ready should the Russian leadership decide to weaponize the energy issue.
'A ten-year low in storage, no sales on the spot market. This behaviour has already damaged Russia's credibility as a reliable energy supplier. We are currently in talks with a number of countries that are ready to step up their exports of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to the EU. This resulted in January in record deliveries of LNG gas – more than 120 vessels and 10 bcm [billion cubic meters] of LNG,' she said.
In preparation for low supplies from Russia and since the annexation of Crimea, the EU has increased the number of operational LNG terminals and upgraded infrastructure.
'We have reinforced our pan-European pipeline and electricity interconnector network. And the good part is that these investments in infrastructure will in future be the backbone of green hydrogen supply. During the last weeks, we have looked into all possible disruption scenarios in case Russia decides to partially or completely disrupt gas supplies to the EU. And I can say that our models show that we are now rather on the safe in this winter,' she said.
She reiterated that the lesson learned from the crisis is the need to diversify energy sources to curtail dependency on Russian gas.
By Murat Temizer