EU should avoid short-term gas supply disruptions: Eurofer

The European Union should avoid disruptions to gas supplies for now “as long as alternative infrastructure is not available”, according to the latest statement issued by steelmakers’ association Eurofer.

The association published the statement on Wednesday, in response to the presentation by the European Commission of REPowerEU, a new plan to reduce dependence on Russian fossil fuels and speed up the green transition, Kallanish notes.

“Without strategic industrial energy consumers such as steel on board, the energy transition will not be successful. Energy intensive industries need to be integrated across all levels of policy making and political discussions as the key enablers of the decarbonisation and the independence of the European energy system,” says Eurofer director general Axel Eggert.

“Rapid access of the steel industry to green hydrogen will boost hydrogen markets in Europe. But alternative gas supplies other than from Russia will remain crucial as long as no hydrogen infrastructure at affordable costs is available. We need a revision of the EU energy strategy for the sake of cohesion, cooperation, and cross-sectoral dialogue,” he adds.

EU talks over a ban on imports of Russian oil and gas have been ongoing in recent weeks, but a decision is yet to be taken by authorities. While there is widespread support for accelerating the green transition to limit the dependence of Europe on imported fossil fuels, sources also point out that targets need to be realistic to be achieved and implemented by industry.

“For the time being, no hydrogen economy or infrastructure exists for the steel sector. Our industry alone will need over 150TWh of ‘clean’ electricity – half of which for the production of hydrogen – by 2030 to run its 60 low carbon projects across the EU. These needs are the equivalent of two times the electricity consumption of Belgium,” Eggert concludes.

Emanuele Norsa Italy