War economics means Europe must ban all energy imports from Russia

(EurActiv, 17 Mar 2022) Europe must fully displace Russian coal, oil and gas as fast as possible. The only option is to initiate a three-step embargo on Russian energy commodities imports to the EU – coal immediately, oil in the coming weeks, and gas by the end of the year, writes Thierry Bros.

Dr Thierry Bros is an energy and climate expert. He is Professor at Sciences Po university in Paris and a regular contributor to Natural Gas World.

We will never forget this European war happening before our eyes. Europe has to decide its future. Russia might become a pariah state for the foreseeable future. And the world is likely to be very different after this war.

In this radically changed context, the European Union must recognise its own energy mistakes and make bold decisions on what to do next.

We are largely in an energy mess because of Germany’s ill-conceived energy policy. In the past 15 years, Europe has been lectured about the highly innovative German ‘Energiewende’ that started by closing nuclear plants in 2011 for emotional and populist reasons and came to increase the coal load factor in 2011-2014 to avoid blackouts.

To illustrate this, it is worth comparing German and Polish energy policies. While Mrs Merkel was telling us she knew Mr Putin and that Nord Stream 2 was “just a commercial project”, the Polish government made clear and public that under no circumstances it would renew, in 2022, the Gazprom contract with their national company.

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EurActiv, 17 Mar 2022: War economics means Europe must ban all energy imports from Russia