Senior writer Dave Keating is a US journalist and conference moderator covering European affairs from Brussels, with a focus on environment and energy. He has worked for France24 and Forbes. He can be found on LinkedIn here.
European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen was keen to highlight that 95% of the financing mobilised in this week’s EU package will be for clean energy. Look under the hood, however, and it seems to be weighted towards replacing Russian fossil fuels with other fossil fuels.
The European Commission is poised to unveil legislative proposals underpinning March’s REPowerEU plan to wean the EU off Russian fossil fuels. Campaigners fear the EU will still prioritise new fossil fuels over energy efficiency and renewables.
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After hours of wrangling at a Brussels summit, Spain and Portugal may be allowed to temporarily decouple electricity prices from the price of gas. It would be a boon to renewables in Iberia but faces resistance from Germany and the Netherlands.
The war is prompting countries like Belgium to delay nuclear phase-outs to be less dependent on Russia, but for countries like Germany, Russia’s missile attacks on nuclear plants reaffirm concerns about safety.
Facing the prospect of Putin turning off the gas taps to Europe in tit for tat sanctions following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen says the focus is on finding LNG from “more reliable partners”.