Europe, gasping for natural gas, isn’t about to break its ties with Russia.
Reuters Employees stand near a pipe made for Russia’s South Stream pipeline. The head of the IEA has warned that Russia will continue to be a key gas supplier in the years to come. Reuters
The head of the International Energy Agency warned that Russia will still be a key gas supplier for the foreseeable future, writes Kjetil Malkenes Hovland.
“In the short term, Europe has very, very little means to diversify its gas imports,” IEA Chief Executive Maria van der Hoeven said on the sidelines of the Offshore Northern Seas energy conference in Norway.
A third of Europe’s gas comes from Russia.
U.S. gas exports are a possible replacement, but are not likely to be speedy, Ms. van der Hoeven said.
Other potential providers include Azerbaijan and Kurdistan, the Eastern Mediterranean and Africa. Shale gas production in Europe is still a distant possibility, with no commercial wells yet in operation.
Norway provides about a fifth of Europe’s gas, but its supplies are dwindling. They’re due to run down by the end of the 2020s.