(MENAFN- Kuwait News Agency (KUNA)) BRUSSELS, Aug 5 (KUNA) -- The Council of the European Union on Friday adopted a regulation on a voluntary reduction of natural gas demand in the EU member states by 15 percent this winter.
The purpose of the gas demand reduction is to make savings for this winter, in order to prepare for possible disruptions of gas supplies from Russia, which is continuously using energy supplies as a weapon, said the Council, which represents the 27 EU governments, in a statement.
EU Member states agreed to reduce their gas demand by 15 percent compared to their average consumption in the past five years, between 1 August 2022 and 31 March 2023, with measures of their own choice.
The Council also specified some exemptions and possibilities to apply a partial or in some cases a full exemption from the mandatory reduction target.
It agreed that EU member states that are not interconnected to other member states' gas networks are exempted from mandatory gas reductions.
Further, EU Member states whose electricity grids are not synchronised with the European electricity system and are more reliant on gas for electricity production will also be exempted.
They can also limit their reduction target if they have overshot their gas storage filling targets if they are heavily dependent on gas as a feedstock for critical industries.
The gas demand reduction would become mandatory in case of a substantial risk of a severe gas shortage or an exceptionally high gas demand.
The regulation is an exceptional and extraordinary measure, foreseen for a limited time.
It will apply for one year and the European Commission will carry out a review to consider its extension in light of the general EU gas supply situation, by May 2023. (end)
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