Austria criticizes the EU's energy policy Austria Chancellor Karl Nehammer wants the EU to decouple the price of energy from that of gas.
On Sunday, Austrian Chancellor Karl Nehammer urged the EU to cap energy costs and decouple electricity costs from gas prices. Inaction, according to the Austrian leader, would allow Vladimir Putin to "set the European electricity price."
"We must finally put an end to the chaos in the energy markets. And only a European solution will make it possible, according to a statement from Nehammer's office. "At long last, something must occur. In its current state, this market will not control itself. I enjoin the EU's 27 members to unite and put an immediate end to this pricing explosion.
Around 40% of the gas used in the EU comes from Russia, and government-led attempts to store this valuable resource in anticipation of winter and a potential supply interruption have forced businesses to buy rather than sell, raising costs. Some EU nations declined to pay for Russian gas in rubles, as Moscow asked, and EU sanctions against Russia preventing maintenance work along Russia-European gas pipelines further exacerbate this market distortion.
Gas prices, which are currently around ten times higher than they were a year ago, directly affect electricity prices throughout Europe. While several EU nations significantly rely on Russian gas for industry and heating, they use other fuels to produce electricity. According to International Energy Agency projections for 2020, Austria, for instance, generates more than 75 percent of its electricity from renewable sources.
Nehammer stated that separating the prices of electricity and gas would give consumers a bill that more fairly reflected the expenses of producing power.
Because Russia controls a sizable portion of Europe's gas supply, he continued, "We cannot let Putin decide the price of European electricity every day."
Price caps will be discussed at the energy crisis summit that will be held as soon as feasible, according to the Czech Republic, which now holds the rotating EU presidency.
The EU's efforts to isolate itself from Russian fossil resources have been compared by Putin to economic "suicide."
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