Germany turns to coal for electricity amid gas shortage concerns
Germany had plans to phase out all coal-fired power by 2038
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Germany plans on limiting the use of natural gas and increasing the use of coal to generate electricity over concerns about a possible gas shortage as Russia cuts supplies, according to German Economy Minister Robert Habeck.
"That’s bitter, but it’s simply necessary in this situation to lower gas usage," Habeck, an environmentalist Green party member, said, the Associated Press reported.
Russia's majority state-owned Gazprom announced plans last week to sharply reduce gas to the Nord Stream 1 pipeline. Although the company cited technical reasons, Haebeck said the move appeared political.
Germany has been scaling back gas imports because of Russia's invasion of Ukraine in February.
The nation was attempting to phase out coal-generated power. Germany is set to shut down its last coal-fired power plant no later than 2038,
The German government is asking citizens to reduce their energy use due to the supply situation.
The European country is hoping to fill its gas storage facilities to 90% capacity by this fall in order to ensure heat throughout the winter. The facilities are currently at less than 60% capacity.
Habeck said the shortfall can be made with purchases from places other than Russia, but the situation is still "serious" and further measures may need to be taken.
One gallon of gas in Germany cost about $7.65 as of last week, according to GlobalPetrolPrices.com.