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Thursday, May 26, 2022

'Drive slower and adjust boiler' EU's ridiculous advice to counter Russia and save energy

World'Drive slower and adjust boiler' EU's ridiculous advice to counter Russia and save energy


The International Energy Agency has launched a guide with the European Commission outlining steps to take to cut energy usage which could save a typical household €450 (£375) a year.

It comes as EU countries scramble to cut energy ties with Russia after its invasion of Ukraine in February.

All members of the European Union have pledged to stop Russian fuel by 2027, but still currently remains dependent on its 26 percent oil imports and 40 percent of gas imports.

However, Germany’s energy minister Christian Lindner said on Wednesday it would be impossible to stop oil imports immediately.

Europe has said it cannot find alternative supplies at present, so is instead asking citizens to adjust their lifestyles.

In the guide, which was released on Thursday, the Paris-based IEA recommended EU citizens to work from home when possible, use bikes, public transport, share cars, avoid driving on Sundays and walk more.

It also calls on countries to adopt car-free Sundays, which some already do.

If Europeans follow the guide, the IEA said they could save around 450 euros annually based on the average energy bills of a typical household.

The predictions will, however, vary from household to household depending on the car they drive and property they live in.

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Fatih Birol, executive director of the IEA, said: “Faced with the horrendous scenes of human suffering that we’ve seen following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, people in Europe want to take action.

“This guide has easy-to-follow steps that with little or no discomfort on our part can reduce the flow of money to Russia’s military and help put us on a path to a cleaner and more sustainable planet.”

According to the guide, turning down the thermostat by 1C could save a household 70 euros off their heating bill and driving an average of 10km per hour slower on motorways could save an additional 60 euros per year on fuel costs.

The IEA said that if all residents of the 27 EU countries followed the measures set out in the guide, it could save 220 million barrels of oil per year and 17 billion cubic metres of gas.

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Eamon Ryan, Ireland’s environment minister, said: “It is very difficult not to come across as someone who is telling the citizen what to do, or is being seen as a mean, Scrooge-like character.”

Austria has so far cut all fares on public transport to three euros per day and is introducing a programme to help low-income families replace old appliances.

Meanwhile, Italy announced on Wednesday it would impose air conditioning temperature limits for public buildings.

Currently, the EU imports 155 billion cubic metres of Russian gas per year.

But if the EU stopped importing the energy or Moscow cut off gas supplies, stronger measures would be needed to reduce fuel usage including factory closures and potential energy rationing.



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