A complete and immediate gas halt from Russia would plunge eurozone countries into recession, with an impact on GDP growth of 1.7%, according to the ESM, the European Stability Mechanism. Because if the stop were triggered in August, the gas stocks accumulated so far with storage would be used up by the end of the year, with the obligation to switch to heavy rationing of consumption from January 2023. A dramatic scenario that Europe must have when they approved the rationing plan with a consumption cut of 15% immediately after it came into force. According to the ESM itself, Austria, Belgium, Germany and Italy are the most vulnerable countries. For Italy and Germany in particular, the impact on GDP growth is estimated at around 2.5%. But to understand the impact on families and businesses, the ESM also provides an example of the sacrifices that would begin next year in the event of the taps shutting off from Russia. Gas consumption in Germany threatens to fall by 40%. These are figures and risks that need to be analyzed very closely following the renewed tensions with Moscow and the decision to freeze assets for foreign companies in “enemy” countries that want to sell their holdings in Russia.
And Putin’s threat of renewed blackmail on Russian gas wasn’t enough. To threaten the stocks and bills of households and businesses next winter in Europe, there’s also the grain of French nuclear power, which has been semi-frozen by maintenance and corrosion problems and pressured by high temperatures.
THE FRANCE EFFECT
Paris, Europe’s largest producer of nuclear energy, is 70% dependent on nuclear and normally a net exporter of energy most of the year, but for weeks it has been forced to import electricity and scout for gas. An emergency to be managed in advance with the rationing plan already announced along with the anti-drought plan.
But nuclear issues are not just a problem for France. All of Europe, almost 20% dependent on French nuclear power, is grappling with Paris’ production cuts. Italy is no exception and depends on Paris for 5% of its electricity needs. A quota to which is indirectly added a piece of electricity from Switzerland (which brings about 9% of its needs to Italy). But countries like neighboring Germany should also burn more gas to keep the lights going, rather than stockpiling supplies for the winter.
Gas, the EU regulation on reducing consumption will apply from tomorrow
The fourth heat wave of the summer is also threatening France’s energy system, which is expected to further heat the rivers used by nuclear operator Edf to cool its reactors. But criticisms of the energy system have just prompted France’s atomic energy agency, ASN, to extend temporary exemptions by allowing five power plants to continue dumping hot water into rivers. It’s not time to enforce strict regulations that limit nuclear production during hot weather to prevent hot sewage being dumped back into rivers from endangering wildlife.
Onshore gas production: Notice to operators interested in selling to the GSE has been published
Meanwhile, French giant EDF, which is set to be nationalized soon, has appealed to the French Council of State, asking the French state for €8.34 billion in compensation following the same government’s January 13 decisions to allocate additional volumes . of cheap nuclear power (at a price of 42 euros per megawatt hour) to its competitors in order to be able to cope with the surge in energy prices and not to download the crazy prices of the last few months onto the bills of households and companies.
Frozen assets, renewed fears of a Russian gas shutdown and the French nuclear crisis put pressure on gas prices yesterday. After a sharp fall in the morning yesterday afternoon, the futures of the ttf market in Amsterdam reversed course. The last photo from futures in September showed a price of 195.5 euros per megawatt hour, compared to 192 the previous day. Crazy prices likely to set new records in the coming months. To understand how far they could go, just look at the latest report from the IEA, the International Energy Agency, on the European electricity market. Looking at projected futures prices between late 2022 and early 2023, the IEA says power could reach over €800 per megawatt-hour (double the current price), with peaks as high as €1,400. If we want to extrapolate these prices to the gas prices, we have to imagine gas prices in Europe of around 400 euros per megawatt hour, with peaks of up to 700, according to the logarithm that connects them. Unthinkable.