Sunday

25th Sep 2022

Oettinger pledges energy solidarity

  • Last winter, parts of Eastern Europe suffered from serious shortages as Russia cut off gas supplies in a dispute with transit country Ukraine (Photo: Flickr)

EU commissioner-designate for energy Guenther Oettinger wants to make sure that no EU member state is left behind as the EU works to improve the security of its gas and electricity supplies.

"The principle of solidarity must stand," Mr Oettinger said, answering questions by Eastern and South Eastern lawmakers in a formal parliamentary hearing on Thursday (14 January). "We must refrain from single-area solutions."

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Become an expert on Europe

Get instant access to all articles — and 20 years of archives. 14-day free trial.

... or subscribe as a group

Mr Oettinger promised to push for massive expansions of the grid. He welcomed plans for extended long-distance gas connections, explicitly referring to the Nord Stream pipeline in the Baltic Sea, a new Southern corridor, the "Nabucco" project connecting the EU with the Caucasus and an intercontinental link to Northern Africa.

For "Nabucco," Oettinger said he would seek as early as this year a "waterproof" long-term commitment from Azerbaijan for gas deliveries.

In addition, the would-be commissioner, a member of Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservative Christian Democrat Party, wants an extended grid within the EU. He promised to support reverse-flow technologies in order to facilitate supplies to every EU region.

Last winter, parts of Eastern Europe suffered from serious shortages as Russia cut off gas supplies in a dispute with transit country Ukraine. Bulgaria and Slovakia were worst hit. The crisis prompted outgoing EU energy commissioner Andris Piebalgs to announce improved interconnections and grids.

Analysis

Investors in renewables face uncertainty due to EU profits cap

While a cap on revenues from renewables is aimed at redirecting excess profits from low-cost electricity generation back to consumers, analysts and industry groups argue such measures come with risks — and at a bad time.

Opinion

How to apply the Nuremberg model for Russian war crimes

A Special Tribunal on Russian war crimes in Ukraine must be convened, because no permanent or existing international judicial institution is endowed with jurisdiction over Russian high-ranking officials, writes the head of the Ukraine delegation to the Council of Europe.

News in Brief

  1. More Russians now crossing Finnish land border
  2. Report: EU to propose €584bn energy grid upgrade plan
  3. Morocco snubs Left MEPs probing asylum-seeker deaths
  4. EU urges calm after Putin's nuclear threat
  5. Council of Europe rejects Ukraine 'at gunpoint' referendums
  6. Lithuania raises army alert level after Russia's military call-up
  7. Finland 'closely monitoring' new Russian mobilisation
  8. Flights out of Moscow sell out after Putin mobilisation order

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. UNESDA - Soft Drinks EuropeCall for EU action – SMEs in the beverage industry call for fairer access to recycled material
  2. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic prime ministers: “We will deepen co-operation on defence”
  3. EFBWW – EFBH – FETBBConstruction workers can check wages and working conditions in 36 countries
  4. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic and Canadian ministers join forces to combat harmful content online
  5. European Centre for Press and Media FreedomEuropean Anti-SLAPP Conference 2022
  6. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic ministers write to EU about new food labelling

Latest News

  1. Ireland joins EU hawks on Russia, as outrage spreads
  2. Editor's weekly digest: Plea for support edition
  3. Investors in renewables face uncertainty due to EU profits cap
  4. How to apply the Nuremberg model for Russian war crimes
  5. 'No big fish left' for further EU sanctions on Russians
  6. Meloni's likely win will not necessarily strengthen Orbán
  7. France latest EU member to step up government spending in 2023
  8. Big Tech now edges out Big Energy in EU lobbying

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us