The EU is preparing an emergency plan to do without Russian energy
PRAGUE (AP) — The executive arm of the European Union pledged on Friday to draw up a contingency plan this month aimed at helping member countries move away from Russian energy in the wake of the war. Kremlin in Ukraine.
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said the initiative would build on EU moves to ditch Russian coal, oil and natural gas and complement a world-wide push. block to accelerate the development of renewable energies such as wind and solar energy.
“We are preparing contingency plans for Europe,” von der Leyen said in the Czech town of Litomysl, where she marked the start of the country’s six-month term as the holder of the rotating EU presidency. EU. “Energy prices are high. People – rightly – expect us to do something about it.
She said the contingency plan, due around mid-July, would focus on two key points, including having a ‘clear idea’ of where to cut Russian energy supplies and doing it ‘in a smart way’ as well as to rally. EU countries facing supply shortages.
“We need a good common plan to get the energy flowing, or the gas flowing to where it’s needed most,” von der Leyen said.
She said the plan would be drawn up in coordination with the Czech government, whose prime minister highlighted political pressure across the EU to act.
“Energy prices are choking our economy,” Prime Minister Petr Fiala said alongside von der Leyen. “This is our biggest test for the coming months.”
The commission announced in May a plan dubbed REPowerEU to ditch Russian energy amid the Kremlin war in Ukraine, proposing a nearly 300 billion euro ($312 billion) package that includes more efficient use of fuels and faster deployment of renewable energy.
“The next step is to make the EUR 300 billion that comes with REPpowerEU available to EU Member States, and so, of course, we are counting on your presidency to quickly reach an agreement on the adoption of the regulation REPowerEU”, von der Leyen said the Czech Prime Minister.
This investment initiative is intended to help the 27 EU countries begin weaning themselves off Russian fossil fuels this year. The aim is to deprive Russia, the EU’s main supplier of oil, natural gas and coal, of tens of billions of revenue and to strengthen EU climate policies.
Jonathan Stearns in Brussels contributed to this.