The failure of just one European country to fill storage facilities before November would put the entire bloc in danger, Dutch authorities warn
A gas crisis in any one EU country would provoke a domino effect and quickly spread throughout the bloc, according to Dutch Climate and Energy Minister Rob Jetten.
"It's good if some member states can fill their gas storages by November 1, but if other countries fail to reach 80% - particularly big countries like Germany - then you have to be aware that this will be a domino effect for the whole of Europe," Jetten told Politico magazine on Tuesday.
The minister noted that in the event of a cessation of the Russian gas supply, the Netherlands "will stand with neighboring countries."
Meanwhile, Jetten stressed that tapping the Groningen gas field, once one of Europe's largest and the continent's major source of gas for decades, would be an option of last resort. In 2019, the Dutch government announced that the giant area in the northeastern part of the country would be shuttered by October 2022 to limit seismic risks in the region, with gas only to be extracted thereafter in the event of extreme weather or unforeseen circumstances.
Last week, the nation lifted all restrictions on coal-fired power stations to reduce natural gas consumption, while making an "urgent appeal" to businesses to save as much energy as possible ahead of the winter season. Jetten plans to present a plan this week on building two nuclear power plants in the country.
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