Coal, oil and gas … In addition to exacerbating the climate crisis, fossil fuel production is a fuel for global conflicts. This is largely fueling the war in Ukraine: despite the financial sanctions it is facing, Russia is still benefiting from the sale of its fuel. Russia’s government revenues from fossil fuel exports have even risen to 63 billion euros in the first two months of the war in Ukraine. This is stated in a new report by the Center for Energy and Clean Air Research (Crea), which monitors exports of Russian oil, gas and coal through pipelines and ships.
Determining which ports received fossil fuel supplies and when, Crea researchers point out that on April 24, of the 63 billion euros of fossil fuels exported by Russia, the European Union was by far the largest buyer. It imported 71 %, or about 44 billion euros. In other words, since the beginning of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine by European Union countries (Europe) spent almost 700 million euros a day on the supply of Russian gas, oil and coal. During this period, a quarter of Russia’s fossil fuel supplies passed through only six EU ports.Europe : Rotterdam (Netherlands), Maasvlakte (Netherlands), Trieste (Italy), Gdansk (Poland) and Zeebrugge (Belgium).
“ By buying Russian gas, we are financing Vladimir Putin’s war »
“ For comparison, imports of fossil fuels fromEurope from Russia amounted to 18 billion euros in February-March 2021, so the estimate of 44 billion euros – in two months – is a very significant increase », declare to Reporter Laurie Milliwirta, chief analyst at Crea. For him, this increase is due primarily to that “ Extremely high fossil fuel prices, which has led to huge windfall profits for Russia » : “ Market gas prices rose from about 10 euros per megawatt-hour a year ago to more than 100 »he assures.
On March 10, Secretary of State for European Affairs Clement Bon confirmed that“ By buying Russian gas, we are financing Vladimir Putin’s war ». According to a Crea report, France is indeed actively involved in the conflict: it is identified as one of the world’s leading importers of Russian fossil fuels, spending 3.8 billion euros in two months. It was second only to Germany (€ 9.1 billion), Italy (€ 6.9 billion), China (€ 6.7 billion), the Netherlands (€ 5.6 billion) and Turkey (€ 4.1 billion).
- The largest importers of fossil fuels during the first two months of the Russian invasion. Report of the Center for Energy and Clean Air Research
Following the supply of fossil fuels, Crea also did not find it surprising that the cargo reached installations or ships associated with the oil company TotalÉnergies, which was criticized for its ties to Russia, or even Exxon Mobil, Shell, Repsol and AT, among others. Electrical communications as RWE, KEPCOTaipower and Tohoku, or even industrial companies such as Nippon Steel, Posco, Formosa Petrochemical Corporation or Mitsubishi Petrochemical Corporation, are also concerned.
We see “ it is clear who continues to support this war »
On the sideNGO Ukrainian environmental action related to the publication of the report, these data point to the accomplices of the war in Ukraine. “ Every drop of oil bought and sent from Russia is a new drop of shed Ukrainian blood, and every piece of Russian coal is a new bullet fired by Ukrainians. Konstantin Krynytskyi, the head of the organization’s energy department, responded. This analysis clearly shows who continues to support this war, and I refuse, like many Ukrainians, to see things differently. »
Laurie Milliwirth of Crea encourages “ all governments and companies that buy Russian fossil fuels to stop purchasing ». This encourages you to replace them with “ energy efficiency measures » and “ clean and non-fossil energy ».
Decisions of the European Union are particularly carefully reviewed. “ In the short term, Russia cannot replace Europe as a source of demandsays the analyst. Most of the country’s fossil fuel exports go to Europe via pipelines, as well as through ports in the Baltic and Black Seas. Terminals LNG or alternative pipeline connections to divert pipeline gas exports to another location simply do not exist. »
Russia’s coal embargo this summer
To stop deliveries to Russia, cEurope could she rush to get rid of the Putin regime’s fuel ? Unsurprisingly, Russian oil accounts for about a quarter of European oil imports.Europe, and that such a choice could further increase energy prices. However, the horizon is clear: in early April, after the alleged executions of Ukrainian civilians near Kyiv, the Twenty-seven adopted an embargo on Russian coal, which will take effect in August. This also includes a ban on four Russian banks and access by Russian ships to Russian portsEurope.
- “ Fossil fuels love war. People love the world. On April 5, Greenpeace activists tried to block the sending of Russian coal to Finland. Twitter / Green Peace
“ Sooner or later, measures will be needed on oil and even gas », said the then President of the Council of the European Union during a debate in the European Parliament. This idea is already provoking discussions among leaders: the European Commission should propose a ban on oil imports in the coming days. Many ministers expressed support, but for others such a decision would be unacceptable “ asymmetric shock », according to European Foreign Minister Josep Borrell. Hungary has already warned that it will try to undermine any efforts of the European Union in this direction. Germany, Europe’s leading economyEurope, can become the core of such action. But so far this will not support an immediate embargo.