Even this winter, now that it is cold in the North, we can see increases of up to 2 thousand euros (on an annual basis) in bills. The only real advantage that Europe had compared to Asian countries was that it received gas by pipeline, which costs less in the world, the Russian gas. They managed to replace it to a large extent with the liquefied one which arrives from the USA and Qatar by ship and costs three times as much.
The great thing is that Russia itself now continues to sell it to us at double the price, because we buy it “on the market”, which is that of liquefied gas and then regasified by ship. The gas that arrived via pipeline instead cost lessnot only because the Russian one is extracted in the traditional world and not with “fracking” (“hydraulic fracturing…”), but because you don’t have to liquefy it, load it on a ship, cross the ocean and then have a “regasifier” to bring it back in the gas state.
The gas that comes from the USA, on the other hand, requires fracturing rocks and is a much more difficult process for the environment, so much so that no European country allows it for now. The media now makes people believe that “gas” exists, but there are two types of natural gas, the one extracted in a “traditional” way and transported by pipeline and the “LNG” extracted with frackingthen liquefied, loaded onto a ship and then requiring the “regasifier” and until 2016 no one in the eurozone bought this type of gas.
Norway, which has some, sold LNG gas elsewhere and so Qatar sold to Asia and the USA did not export any. This cost between 20 and 30 euros at the “TTF” market in Amsterdam and then with the war it shot up to 300 euros. Germany and Italy, which are more industrialized and have more need for gas because they don’t have nuclear power plants etc., didn’t buy any. They bought it from Russia instead by pipeline and it cost from 5 to 8 euros per MWh.
The reason why the Germans are in crisis as a heavy industry now is that they are buying gas from the USA (Norway, Qatar) at a price five times that of Russia. But they can’t say anything. The Americans blew up the Nordsteam gas pipeline and German TV and newspapers are ordered not to talk about the attack. Even our media pretends that the only price of gas now is LNG. And among other things, the Russians have “adapted” and they too sell it “on the market” liquefied at 5 times the price at which they sold the gas to Eni under 20-year contracts before.
Russian gas, on the other hand, is very simple, they take it out by drilling where it exists and then it passes into a gas pipeline that took them 20 years to build two decades ago and whose cost is amortized and therefore transport costs almost nothing. And you don’t have to liquefy it, pay for shipping by ship (which maybe like now passes around the whole of Africa if it comes from Qatar) and then build a regasifier to regasify it.
Europe didn’t want to extract its gas, apart from Norway, for environmental reasons and was fortunate enough to have Russian gas already connected. This did not sit well with the US which from 2014 onwards spent billions to arm Ukrainian nationalists. Then in 2022 they sabotaged it, blowing it up, the new Nordstream gas pipeline which was almost ready, precisely because they don’t want us to have cheap Russian gas in Europe and instead want to sell us their gas which is much more expensive.
When you see that in recent years US income has grown and European income has not, the cost of energy is one of the reasons is this difference in the cost of energy. Let’s face it: with gas it’s like with vaccines that protect you, Ukraine fighting for freedom and Israel defending itself.