With the necessary lesson learned on energy security in the EU due to developments between Russia and Ukraine, measures are being implemented to ensure supply security, Paula Pinho, director of Just Transition at the European Commission Directorate-General for Energy, said on Friday.
Pinho, who spoke during the Gas Infrastructure Europe annual conference in Hungary's capital Budapest, acknowledged that Europe's resilience is being tested with the continent facing difficulties now that Russian energy supplies are under sanctions.
'We not only wish for the best but also take measures for the worst,' she said.
She confirmed that the constant communication between member countries has led to the conclusion that a new policy is required to end dependency on Russian energy sources.
'Russia has a really big share in our energy mix. We took a big step for the first time by imposing sanctions on Russian coal,' she said.
However, Europe, which is highly dependent on Russian gas, has also seen some member countries stop natural gas imports from Russia, namely Lithuanian and Estonia.
To ensure supply security for next winter, she said measures are being taken to ensure full natural gas storage and energy efficiency in preparation for the worst-case scenario.
'We have policies that will yield results in the medium and long term. We have to act quickly. We are also working on a package that regulates natural gas storage, but we should focus most of our energy on renewables and emphasize efficiency.'
To this end, Pinho urged countries that do not have their own natural gas storage to contribute to the storage facilities available in other member countries.
The Russia-Ukraine war, which started on Feb. 24, has drawn international outrage, with the EU, US, and Britain, among others, implementing tough financial sanctions on Moscow.
The EU is considering further sanctions against Russia's energy industry in response to the situation in Ukraine, with the goal of prohibiting the delivery of energy resources such as oil, gas, and coal.
By Murat Temizer in Budapest