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In this 13th Edition, HAEE’s Chart of the Month focuses on Natural Gas and LNG flows to EU-27 in 2022
The European Union’s dependence on Russian gas and the risk that Moscow could cut the natural gas supply created an unusual situation for the EU to meet demand during 2022 and especially during winter. Natural gas flows from the Russian pipeline to Europe in 2022 were only a fraction of what they used to be in recent years. Europe's policy has shifted towards increasing LNG volumes to achieve 80% coverage of storage sites and cover reduced pipeline gas flows. The fact that Europe has, so far, experienced a milder winter than usual, combined with policies for higher energy efficiency, has delayed withdrawals from storage inventories.
More specifically, total natural gas demand in the EU-27 for 2022 was cumulatively 351.8 bcm, an overall decrease of 12.4% compared to the 2019-2021 average demand, due to good weather conditions and the suspension of business activity of Nord Stream Ι & ΙΙ. LNG imports to EU-27 skyrocketed to 122.6 bcm, with France and Spain being the main gate for entering European energy markets. Greece’s domestic consumption recorded the lowest value of 5.41 bcm in four years, while the natural gas exports marked a new record of 2.82 bcm. USA is the main LNG supplier to Greece, surpassing 1.9 bcm in 2022.