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EU's gas usage plans may result in further €250B in bill by 2030 due to high prices

The European Union’s REPowerEU proposal aimed at reducing gas consumption could prevent only €47 billion in the bloc’s energy bill by 2030, according to a new analysis by think-tank Ember and Global Witness on Wednesday.

The EU’s current plan for natural gas usage could lead to an additional €250 billion in the bloc's energy bill by 2030 if the current high prices continue, the analysis found.

The EU's planned gas use levels under the "Fit-for-55" policy package would see at least €42 billion more being spent on gas in 2030 than originally anticipated when calculated with the current market gas price forecasts. However, based on sustained high prices, the additional bill would rise to a staggering €250 billion, it said.

It calculated the cost of EU natural gas imports and production under different scenarios for gas demand, comparing these to the cost forecasts originally prepared by the European Commission.

As the European Commission (EC) tries to reduce the bloc's dependence on Russian gas imports with its REPowerEU strategy, the analysis said it still relies heavily on natural gas with Europe exposed to a rise in its bill of €34 billion at the forecasted 2030 prices, or €203 billion at today's natural gas prices.

The EC assumed fossil gas prices of €19 per megawatt-hour for 2030 in its impact assessment for the Fit-for-55 policy package.

However, gas prices for the future European benchmark Dutch Transfer Facility (TTF) contracts put the 2030 calendar year price 70% higher at €33 per megawatt-hour, while this year's price is even higher at €98 per megawatt-hour.


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