⚡French power cuts becoming increasingly unlikely
Good news on the energy front, as Olivier Véran gave some good news to French citizens who have engaged in energy sobriety
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There was some good news coming out of France today, with government spokesman, Olivier Véran, announcing that the risk of power cuts in France “seems to be on the wane”, and that the danger is no longer as present as initially feared
Nonetheless, Véran was clear that the government would expect “companies and citizens” to continue making efforts and to continue to be economical in their use of energy, in order to continue to prevent the worst from happening.
“The risk of a power cut this winter seems to be receding, in particular due to a gradual restarting of operation of our nuclear power plants, but also due to the weather conditions, as everyone will have been able to see, [and] due to the effort achieved by the State, companies and all French people in terms of energy sobriety. This is therefore rather reassuring news, but which should not take us away from our objective, which is that of energy sobriety.”
- Olivier Véran on Wednesday 4 January
He added that the state had one single objective “to reduce our consumption”, which he argued should not only been done due to the “the occasional contraction of supply or the rise in prices.”
Emmanuelle Wargon, the president of the Energy Regulatory Commission and former housing minister, was clear that this result was due to the call for sobriety having been “really heard by the French”, who caused a 9% drop in total consumption over the past four months.
This led to the risk of tension across the electricity network being lowered from “high” to “medium”, supported by the increase in active nuclear reactors, with 42 out of 56 currently being in service.
Emmanuel Macron has previously called on his ministers “to be bold and to remain attentive to the concerns of all French people…at a time when we are reforming, when we are transforming, to be able to respond to day-to-day emergencies and future emergencies for all French people”
And it appears that this has been heard and followed through on, with the ongoing support for French citizens and businesses reinforcing the social contract and encouraging compliance with the call for energy sobriety, helping everyone.
A Resilient, if Concerned, Europe
With Vladimir Putin having banked on Europe being affected by high energy prices, leading to civil unrest that would make support for Ukraine untenable, it’s clear that his gamble has failed thanks to a very warm January across the continent.
With the warmest January day ever being records in several European countries such as Poland, Denmark, the Czech Republic, and warm weather across Spain, France and the United Kingdom, gas prices have been spent tumbling down.
It has also almost ensured that gas storage facilities will very likely last for the winter, and will shore up the ability of European states to continue divesting from Russian gas and energy sources, and diversify their sources of gas.
A reduction in the ability for Russian blackmail will enable more freedom from certain states to help our Ukrainian allies, allow us to better combat disinformation at home, and ultimately, show stronger support for Volodymyr Zelenskyy in liberating his people and his country from the stifling oppression that is war.
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