Germany hits 75% gas stockpile target ahead of schedule

A view shows pipes at the landing facilities of the ‘Nord Stream 1’ gas pipeline in Lubmin, Germany, July 21, 2022. REUTERS/Annegret Hilse

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FRANKFURT, Aug 14 (Reuters) – German gas storage facilities were just over 75% full last Friday, weeks ahead of the target, data from European operator group GIE showed on Sunday.

Germany has 23.3 billion cubic meters (bcm) of underground gas storage, just over a fifth of the 100 bcm of gas used in 2021.

The Rehden storage unit, which contains 4 billion m3, was 54% full, according to GIE data.

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Germany is in phase two of a three-step contingency plan formulated after a reduction in gas flows from Russia, its main supplier. This is causing serious headaches for German industry, which accounts for a quarter of the country’s gas demand.

Russia has drastically reduced flows to Europe via the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline since mid-June and is currently supplying only 20% of agreed volumes, blaming faulty and delayed equipment, while Europe says the move has been politically motivated.

The government had targeted gas storage levels to reach 75% by September 1. The next targets are 85% by October 1 and 95% by November 1, which are embedded in a number of provisions aimed at helping Germany avoid a winter 2022 gas crisis/ 23.

The provisions include an increase in imports of liquefied natural gas (LNG) and incentives to reduce energy consumption. Read more

In addition, the German gas market operator THE is expected to announce on August 15 the amount of a tax on the price of gas imposed on consumers, to help Uniper (UN01.DE) and other importers to face the price spike. Read more

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Reporting by Vera Eckert Editing by David Goodman

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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