Thirteen of the 17 EU member countries that own gas storage facilities have already exceeded the targets set by the European Commission for their 80 percent capacity before the coming winter. Four countries, Austria, Hungary, Bulgaria and Latvia, have not yet met that target, Politico reported on its website on Friday. Since the launch of the Russian invasion of Ukraine in February, EU countries have been trying to diversify their gas supplies and minimize dependence on Russian energy. At the initiative of the European Commission, the capacity of gas storage tanks was filled throughout Europe during the summer, but the actual filling of storage tanks varies in individual EU countries. Not all Euro bloc countries have gas storage facilities on their territory, but they can buy storage space at the nearest cross-border storage facility, Politico pointed out. The European Commission has set itself the goal that by November 1, all gas storage tanks in the EU will be filled to an average of 80 percent, which is a milestone that was already achieved on August 29. As of September 20, the average level of EU reservoirs was 86.25%. A year ago, on September 20, 2021, the state of reservoirs was at the level of 79.92%. However, the situation varies depending on the state of the reservoirs in individual countries. A long and cold winter can pose problems, especially if Russia definitively closes the gas taps to the EU, which is why gas storages are strategically important.
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