As fears grow about a winter energy crisis caused by Vladimir Putin’s cutting of gas supplies to Europe, Hanover, Germany has introduced strict new energy-saving rules.
The hot water supply to public buildings, swimming pools and sports halls, as well as gyms, will be cut by officials.
Other gas-saving measures include turning off public fountains or stopping the lighting of major buildings, such as town halls at night.
Mayor Belit Onay tweeted “The goal is to reduce energy consumption by 15%.”
“This is a response to the impending shortage of gas, which poses a major problem for municipalities, especially Hanover.
Others measures include:
* The heating will not be turned on for longer periods in municipal buildings (except day-care centres)
* All lamps can be converted to LED
* Installing motion detectors in place of permanent lighting in bathrooms, bike sheds, car parks and corridors
* Banning mobile air conditioners, fan heaters and radiators
The city authorities were also urged to cut down on the use of certain electrical devices like printers and refrigerators.
Awareness of economic heating and ventilation behavior has also been increased.
Similar measures were also taken in other cities like Munich, Leipzig and Cologne .
These measures were taken after Russia reduced the flow of natural gas through the Nord Stream pipeline by 20%.
Gazprom, a state-owned company, blamed the move on maintenance delays. This has raised fears that Russia’s dependence on Russian gas could be used by the Kremlin to retaliate for Western sanctions regarding the Ukraine invasion.
Germany is worried about energy-saving measures as it feels bitten by Russian gas reliance
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Economists warn that recession is likely if heavy Russian gas users, such as Germany, Europe’s largest economy, take extreme measures to reduce their dependence on Russian gas.
Berlin charged the Russian government with a power play through its management Nord Stream 1.
The situation with gas prices threatens to worsen the crisis of living standards in Europe.