The Netherlands will stop buying Russian gas by the end of the year
The cabinet intends to completely phase out all Russian gas, oil and coal purchases by the end of the year, said Rob Jetten, minister for climate and energy. The supply of gas kept in storage will be reinforced as much as possible by next year. About 15% of the gas consumed in the Netherlands comes from Russia.
Jetten made the announcement during an interview with reporters after the weekly cabinet meeting. He said the government would offer incentives to businesses to help them source gas supplies, including the possibility of compensating businesses that are currently locked in by the high purchase price of gas, if that price drops before fuel is consumed. Even without the participation of the energy companies, the public company Energie Beheer Nederland will try to ensure that the Bergermeer gas storage facility is filled to at least 70% of its capacity.
The Minister said the Cabinet would allocate around 623 million euros for this. A gasoline tax can be used to cover the cost. He said the Cabinet was quietly working on a plan to quickly reduce, if not eliminate, the need for Russian gas. The country’s natural gas can still flow through Dutch pipelines to other countries, he said.
Energy savings and the growing focus on sustainability will also help reduce dependence on fossil fuels. In addition, the Netherlands will also invest in the storage of liquefied natural gas in the ports of Rotterdam and Eemshaven. This will increase imports of liquefied natural gas from other countries. With these factors combined, “we will be able to replace the entire Russian gas supply,” Jetten told reporters.
The European Union as a whole will stop importing coal from Russia by August 11, according to NOS. This is the result of the fifth package of sanctions imposed by the EU on Russia after its invasion of Ukraine. The EU is still working on how to eliminate Russian oil purchases.