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Germans asked to save more gas as temperatures drop

Germany’s energy regulator has urged consumers to save more gas as the temperatures dip below 0 degrees Celsius (32 degrees Fahrenheit) in large parts of the country.

“Currently, the total savings are only 13 percent,” Klaus Muller, chief of Federal Network Agency (Bundesnetzagentur), told Tagesspiegel, a local newspaper, on Monday. 

He said households must reduce gas consumption by 20 percent to avoid shortages in the coming months.

“It’s important that we don’t let up on our savings efforts and stick them out throughout the winter,” he added. 

Germany is facing a severe energy crisis due to the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war, which led to disruptions in the gas supply and pushed energy prices to record highs.

Although the country has managed to fill gas storage facilities to 95 percent capacity as of last week, experts are warning that this does not guarantee there will not be rationing of gas or power cuts in the colder winter months.

The storage facilities also need a continuous flow of gas from the pipelines to maintain sufficient pressure. 

Diversifying supply sources

The Nord Stream 1 pipeline, Germany’s main source of Russian gas, was destroyed following an explosion in September, and the country is currently importing no gas from Russia.

Before the start of the war in Ukraine, Russia was supplying 55 percent of Germany’s natural gas.

The German government is trying to diversify its natural gas supply sources by purchasing more gas from Norway and increasing imports via pipelines from Belgium and the Netherlands.

To receive enough liquefied natural gas (LNG) to replace Russian gas entirely in the coming years, Berlin is building LNG terminals at the northern German ports of Brunsbuttel, Wilhelmshaven, Stade, and Lubmin. 

READ MORE: German hospitals may face closures due to energy crisis: health minister

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