Between the Kiev and Moscow gas dispute is brewing

In connection with the onset of cold Ukraine fears that gas reserves in the country may not be enough until the end of winter. Not exclude the risk of recurrence of the gas dispute of 2009, which makes the shortage of natural gas felt also in other European countries.

Last week Ukraine has doubled the volume of selection of gas from underground storage facilities, increasing it to 100 million cubic meters per day.

While stocks are still more than enough. According to Dmitry Marunich (Dmitrij Marunitsch) co-chair “of the energy strategies Foundation” they currently represent about 11 billion cubic meters. However, the pipeline and storage system requires at least four billion cubic meters of gas to maintain the pressure. If the weather remain so cold as far. then reserves will last only 70 days. Then you may experience problems with supply.

So Alexei Miller, the head of the Russian gas concern Gazprom, in December, warned Ukraine not to take more gas from the pipeline. In this case, according to Miller, the transportation of gas through Ukrainian pipeline immediately cease that will affect Europe.

The Russian allegations are not new. In 2009, Russia for a short time stopped the gas exports through Ukraine, because Ukraine illegally took away the gas transit. Ukraine has consistently rejected the accusation. There consider the Russian accusations as an excuse to block the transit of Russian gas through Ukraine to the West, which brings Kiev annually two billion dollars. At extremely low temperatures in Moscow and in other cities the demand for gas is also very high. Also Europe urgently asks for 10% more gas.

Against the new crisis is the fact that extreme cold is unlikely to last until March. In addition, the Ukrainian energy company Naftogaz secured lines of credit in excess of $ 800 million from Deutsche Bank and Citi-Bank, in the event the need to have the opportunity to buy gas. Support came also from Europe. In October, the Vice-President of the European Commission maroš Šefčovič (Maroš Šefčovič) stressed that the EU considers the maintenance of gas transit through Ukraine after 2019 strategically important.

In addition, Ukraine wants in the future to rely more on gas from the EU. However, part of this gas also originally comes from Russia, but the intermediate trade in the EU makes deliveries to Ukraine is much more secure. And yet this European policy towards Ukraine are not designed for long stays. 60% of the entire energy network of the country is outdated, says Ukrainian expert in the field of energy Valentin Zemlyansky. This opens up the scope for long-term environmental investments.

In Ukraine even more often speak about renewable sources of energy. In addition, the government has plans to save energy. However, the interest in long-term and energy-saving products is small. For example, the deputies of Kyiv city Council in December had to learn that the city has failed in its widely publicized program of energy savings in 2016.

Most of the budget was, as reported by the Internet portal “Kievvlast”, was spent on workshops and projects, and not on the actual austerity measures. While the small town of Slavuta in the Western Ukraine, by contrast, was able within three years to reduce your gas consumption by half.