The German Chancellor, Olaf Scholzhas shown its support this Thursday for the construction of a gas pipeline to transport energy from Portugal towards the north and center of Europe, through Spain and France. The president has lamented that the infrastructure does not yet exist, now that dependence on Russian supply is in danger.
Spain asks the European Union to cover the costs to finish building the gas pipeline
already existed the mid cat project for this purpose, but it has been paralyzed for years because receiving natural gas from Russia was cheaper. There are still 226 kilometers of pipes to be built between Hostalric (Catalonia) and Barbaira (France). Spain requests that the European Union be responsible for the remaining expenses.
Scholz feels “dramatically” the absence of connections with the Iberian Peninsula, since they could have meant “a massive contribution to alleviate and lighten the situation”, he explained at a press conference. The chancellor has spoken with his counterparts about Portugal, Spain and France and hopes to present the project to the president of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen.
The president has described Germany’s current energy dependency on Russia as a “mistake”. The coalition between Social Democrats, Greens and Liberals who has governed the country since December has been “surprised” by the lack of alternatives, but Scholz affirms that they have managed to find them “in record time.”
Germany has already filled its gas tanks to 75% of their capacity. The goal was to reach this figure by September 1 and reach 95% in November. However, this evolution depends on Russian natural gas. the supplier Gazprom it temporarily cut the connection in mid-July and when it was restored the sending volume had dropped by half.
The success of storage is due in part to the reactivation of a coal plant and to measures that restrict energy consumption, such as lighting monuments and public buildings. The country must disconnect the last three nuclear power plants in operation, but the coalition discusses without agreement to postpone the date, currently located at the end of 2022.
Despite the rise in energy prices, the chancellor has assured that “we are not going to leave any citizen alone”. The German Executive has already approved measures to mitigate the effects of inflation and help the most vulnerable households. Germany is preparing a second package of 10,000 million euros that aims to alleviate the situation of up to 48 million citizens.