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The Russian aggression against Ukraine, the sanctions on Russian oil and coal and Russia’s gas supply stop has forced Germany to reassess its energy and climate policy and to redefine priorities in the energy trilemma sustainability- supply security-economic competitiveness. Before the war, Germany clearly prioritized climate sustainability and the electrification/decarbonization of the economy. Meanwhile, it considered fossil energy-especially gas- security stable and secure and competitiveness increasingly a function of the energy transformation.
"The world has never witnessed such a major energy crisis in terms of its depth and its complexity," IEA Executive Director Fatih Birol said at a global energy forum in Sydney. "We might not have seen the worst of it yet -- this is affecting the entire world."
Over the last twenty years, the European Union (EU) has developed strong credentials in tackling climate and sustainable development-related issues, having actively contributed to the achievement of milestone international agreements and been the frontrunner in the design and implementation of climate and environmental policies at large.
Most of Europe’s natural gas consumption occurs in three sectors. Firstly, in the residential and commercial/public sectors, mainly for space heating (38 per cent of total EU-27 gas consumption in 2020); secondly, in the heat and electricity generation sector (35 per cent - Such plants may be electricity-only, heat-only, or combined heat and power (CHP)); and thirdly, in the industrial sector, mainly to generate process heat (25 per cent).
Today, Europe finds itself in the midst of a perfect storm. From its onset, the war in Ukraine laid bare the structural weaknesses of the European energy market, and although the conflict served to highlight these problems, they had long existed in the EU’s energy scenario. The energy trilemma revolves around three main pivots: energy price, energy security, and sustainability. The core priority around which European energy policy has been based over the last twenty years has been ensuring energy supplies, particularly gas, at as low a price as possible.
Today Europe is responsible for roughly 8% of global GHG emissions. An amount set to decrease even more in the coming decades, as the continent’s demographic and economic weight is projected to shrink. Hence, it appears immediately clear that the current ‘climate emergency’ will not be won in Europe, nor actually in the West at large, but in ‘new economies’: China, India, South-East Asia and ever more in Africa.
Nonostante la repressione e gli arresti, proseguono le manifestazioni in Iran. Ma i suoi esiti dipenderanno da numerosi fattori.
Da settembre la Repubblica islamica dell’Iran è scossa da proteste e scioperi scatenati dalla morte di Mahsa (Jina) Amini, studentessa curda 22enne, avvenuta mentre era in custodia della polizia morale di Teheran. Le manifestazioni si sono diffuse a macchia d’olio in tutto il paese e stanno coinvolgendo ampie fette della popolazione a prescindere dall’età, dal genere e dall’appartenenza sociale, continuando nonostante la sanguinosa repressione e il controllo di internet da parte delle autorità iraniane.