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Russia-Ukraine War: EU Renews Russian Sanctions Until 2023 And Sets Out Plan To Ration Gas This Winter – Live

EU agrees plan to ration gas use over Russia supply fears

Jennifer Rankin

EU member states have agreed to ration gas this winter, in an attempt to avoid an energy crisis generated by further Russian cuts to supply.

Energy ministers from the 27 member states mostly backed a plan for a voluntary 15% reduction in gas usage over the winter, but added in several opt-outs for island nations and countries unconnected or little connected to the European gas network, which will blunt the overall effect.

The European Commission had suggested that a collective 15% gas savings target would reduce gas consumption by 45bn cubic metres. Once exemptions are taken into account the final bcm tally will be lower, after a revolt led by southern European countries that use less or no Russian gas.

The agreement comes less than 24 hours after Russia’s state-controlled energy firm, Gazprom, announced a steep reduction in gas supplies through the critical Nord Stream 1 pipeline from Wednesday. It came only days after Nord Stream 1 went back online at lower capacity, following summer maintenance.

EU leaders have accused the Russian president, Vladimir Putin, of attempting to blackmail European countries for supporting Ukraine. Russia has cut or reduced supplies to a dozen or so EU countries.

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