Netherlands can get through winter without Russian gas: Gasunie
The Netherlands can get through the coming winter with no gas shortages, even if Russia completely stops providing gas to Europe, provided that some preconditions are met. Gasunie Transport Services (GTS), the Netherlands’ national gas network operator, came to this conclusion after investigating the consequences of Russia closing the gas tap to Europe, NOS reports.
According to GTS, it won’t be necessary to shut down the industry or cut heating this coming winter. “That is good news for Dutch buyers,” GTS director Bart Jan Hoevers said to the broadcaster. “Other emergency measures such as extra production from the Groningen field do not appear to be necessary for the coming months.”
The GTS assumed that the coming winter would be an average one. “If you look at the coldest winter, you would need about 10 percent extra gas,” Hoevers said to NOS. “Now that could be less due to the high price.” But if Netherlands residents continue to be stingy with their gas use, as they’ve been over the past months due to the high prices, that also should not pose a significant problem.
Russia has already reduced its gas supply to Europe in the past few months. For example, Germany received 60 percent less gas through the Nord Stream 1 pipeline. The pipeline shut down entirely on Monday for annual maintenance. Germany expects Russia will keep it closed under the guise of technical problems.
That should not be a problem for the Netherlands as long as the following preconditions are met: gas usage remains 20 percent lower as is currently the case due to the high prices, coal-fired power stations continue to operate at full capacity, the Netherlands succeeds in doubling its imports of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to 24 billion cubic meters as planned, the LNG terminals in the Netherlands, Belgium, and United Kingdom continue to be fully utilized, and the Dutch gas storage facilities are filled to at least 80 percent. The Dutch gas storage facilities are currently about 57 percent full.
If the preconditions are met, the Netherlands will also be able to still export gas to Germany, France, and Belgium. Those countries depend on supply from the Netherlands for low-calorific gas.