Natural gas deficit may force Europeans to switch back to coal – expert

Rising gas prices will force European countries to restrain their ambitions to phase out coal and fossil fuels, according to an expert on EU energy markets, Simonas Vileikis.

“Underfilled storage facilities continue to push the price of gas higher. If the facilities are not refilled now, and the winter turns out to be rather severe, EU nations may be forced to reactivate thermal power plants operating on other types of fuel, including coal, to compensate for the lack of electricity,” Vileikis told TASS.



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On Wednesday, European prices for gas hit a multi-year high of almost $970 per 1,000 cubic meters, extending the unprecedented rally seen over the past weeks. The surge in prices is projected to trigger power outages in the EU during the winter.

Steep gas prices have reportedly become a driver in lifting carbon and coal prices to record highs as well. Among the other factors contributing to higher energy costs, according to analysts, include low wind generation and nuclear plant unavailability across the continent.

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