EU energy ministers on Tuesday reached a political agreement to decrease the bloc’s gas demand amid threats from Russia to cut off supplies.
“This was not a Mission Impossible! Ministers have reached a political agreement on gas demand reduction ahead of the upcoming winter,” the Czech government, which holds the current six-month rotating presidency of the European Council, wrote on Twitter following the extraordinary meeting.
The energy ministers gathered to discuss the European Commission’s winter emergency plan asking EU member states to reduce their natural gas demand by 15% between August and March, fearing that Russia would stop supplying gas in response to the bloc’s Ukraine war sanctions.
Under the proposal, the move would allow EU member states to fill up their underground gas storage, which now stands at 66%, and also narrow the future gap between supply and demand to avoid winter shortages.