According to the head of the Federal Network Agency, if Russia cuts off its gas supplies completely, the German reserves would not last long. Liquid gas from the USA in particular could provide some relief. The failure of an LNG factory in Texas after a fire worries him.
According to estimates by the Federal Network Agency, Germany would not get very far with its current gas reserves. "Should we no longer get Russian gas and experience an averagely warm winter, then the quantities stored at the moment - including our obligations to forward gas to other European countries - will last for maybe one to two months," said agency boss Müller to the newspapers of the Funke media group . However, such figures were based on many uncertainties, he added. The German gas storage facilities are currently a little more than 60 percent full.
Müller emphasized that the European obligations would have to be met even in the event of major bottlenecks. "In a gas emergency, Germany would be obliged to support its neighbors in France, Austria, Poland and the Czech Republic, for example. We have signed European solidarity commitments for this purpose," he said. "The reverse is also true: If we should not have enough gas in Germany to supply our protected customers, we can rely on the solidarity of our neighbors."
In the short term, Müller sees few alternatives to Russian gas. "Negotiations with countries like Qatar are forward-looking, and shale gas production in Germany has not even been explored," he said. "That's why we're looking at the countries where we can already buy liquid gas today. And that's primarily the USA."
Müller expressed concern about the fire in the liquid gas plant in Freeport, Texas. "The supply restrictions are already having a significant impact on the gas price and appear to be continuing for some time."
The president of the regulatory authority emphasized: "The Federal Network Agency's focus is on the next three to six months. I'm concentrating on the question: will jobs be preserved and living rooms warm in the coming winter?"