EU nations consent to temporary gas curbs, while Poland and Hungary disagree

Hungary and Poland disagreed with the law, but their disagreement did not prevent it from becoming law because it only required support from 15 countries in it to pass.

Despite Poland and Hungary's opposition to the final law, European Union nations have legally endorsed the bloc's emergency plan to reduce gas use as they strive to store the fuel for a winter of uncertain Russian supplies.

The EU reached an agreement last week to lower their gas consumption, try to fill gas storage, and get ready for a potential complete Russian cutoff. They formally passed the legislation enacting this agreement on Friday.

Although there are various opt-outs for particular nations and businesses, the accord encourages all EU nations to voluntarily reduce their gas use by 15% this winter and might make the reduction mandatory in an issue with the supply.

The rule was adopted by all nations barring Hungary and Poland, according to a report released by the Czech Republic, which is in charge of EU national negotiations at the moment.

A stronger majority

Before going on the offensive in Ukraine, Russia supplied 40% of the gas for the EU. Since then, Moscow has reduced gas supplies to Europe, making it more difficult for EU countries to stockpile fuel ahead of the winter. As a result, many people are scrambling to acquire non-Russian fuel and taking measures to reduce their gas consumption.

The only nation to object to the agreement last week and challenge the constitutionality of EU regulations that have an impact on a country's national energy mix or energy security was Hungary, which is in talks to purchase more gas from Russia.

Despite having backed the agreement last week, Poland also disagreed with the final law. Poland criticized the law's "defective" legal foundation and asserted that decisions impacting the member states' energy mix should only be made after receiving unanimous consent from all nations.

The initiative was not derailed by their resistance because it only required the backing of 15 nations to become law.

Without going into further detail as to what form a cap may take, the European Commission stated in a statement that it is "urgently reviewing" the prospect of adopting gas price caps.

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