Germany's gas storage facilities 'almost 95 percent full'

DPA/The Local
DPA/The Local - [email protected] • 12 Oct, 2022 Updated Wed 12 Oct 2022 11:17 CEST
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A lit gas hob. Photo: picture alliance/dpa/dpa-tmn | Franziska Gabbert

Despite the loss of Russian gas supplies, Germany is on track to meet its targets for shoring up winter energy reserves.

According to data from released by Europe's gas infrastructure operators (EIG) on Tuesday evening, Germany's upped its gas reserves by a further 0.23 percentage points within 24 hours, taking them to 94.67 of their total capacity.  

According to legal targets set by the Federal Ministry of Economics, gas storage facilities should be at least 95 percent full by November 1st. This target has now almost been reached - though there are still stark regional differences. 

The Economics Ministry's regulation stipulates that all gas storage facilities should be filled to 95 percent. Currently, however, some facilities have overshot this target, while others are still well below the levels required. 

READ ALSO: What gas customers in Germany need to know this autumn

At a level of 95 percent, there is generally enough gas to cover the nation's needs for two of the coldest winter months - though much depends on the weather throughout autumn and winter. 

In light of the war in Ukraine and growing tensions between Russia and the West, Germany has been seeking to drastically reduce its dependence on Russian fossil fuels and shore up emergency reserves.

Its attempts to save gas were thrown off course after Russia drastically reduced its deliveries via the Nord Stream 1 pipeline over summer and stopped deliveries entirely in September. 

Economics Minister Robert Habeck (Greens) has stressed that full gas storage facilities are important to ensure that Germany's economy, public authorities, and households have a secure energy supply during the cooler months.

However, the Federal Network Agency (BNA) has continuously stressed the importance of saving energy to ensure that reserves remain high. According to BNA, even full reserves aren't enough to meet the country's average consumption needs. 

The storage facilities compensate for fluctuations in gas consumption and form a buffer against volatility on the gas market. They are usually well filled at the beginning of the heating season in autumn, with levels gradually declining until spring.

On cold winter days, up to 60 percent of gas consumption in Germany was covered by domestic storage facilities in recent years.

READ ALSO: Cold winter in Germany could spark gas shortage, warns energy regulator

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