Germany announced a 1.5 billion euro agreement to switch to non-Russian liquefied natural gas (LNG) and decelerated its withdrawal from coal energy, on Wednesday, in an effort to diversify its fuel supplies and reduce reliance on the primary supplier, Russia.
‘Pragmatism must trump every political commitment,’ Economy Minister of Germany, Robert Habeck said on public radio Deutschlandfunk, remarks that would have been unthinkable a week ago from a Greens minister.
‘The security of supplies must be ensured,’ he added while addressing concerns about blackouts and gas rationing for heating.
Habeck’s remarks are the latest example of how Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has thrown a wrench in Germany’s planned transition to carbon neutrality, prompting the government to reevaluate its nuclear and coal exits.
According to data from the Economy Ministry’s website, Russia is the largest supplier of gas to Germany, accounting for 38 percent of its total fuel usage. Last year, coal and gas together accounted for 43 percent of Germany’s gross power generation.