Thursday, April 17, 2014

The sound of one invisible hand slapping Germans upside the head

To no effect on German journalists if this Deutsche Welle piece is any example;
The most important energy supplier is Russia: It provides 38 percent of Germany's natural gas imports, 35 percent of all oil imports and 25 percent of coal imports, covering a quarter of the country's entire energy needs. There are no suitable alternatives in sight that could cover shortfalls of this magnitude.
Germany can supply only 15 percent of its gas needs using its own resources, the Association of Energy and Water Industries (BDEW) says. Most of its gas is supplied by Norway and the Netherlands. Both countries could increase their short-term shipments via pipelines, but not in the long run, because experts believe North Sea gas reserves are slowly being used up.
They haven't heard the one about das Huhn und das Ei;
Importing cooled, liquefied gas in tank ships from Algeria, Qatar or the US is an alternative - in theory. But US ports lack facilities to handle liquefied natural gas, and Germany does not have the corresponding unloading stations. 
Because if the facilities don't exist now, they can't be built? Then how about exploiting Germany's own reserves;
Dependence on Russsian gas imports has also increased interest in natural gas production using hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, which involves injecting a mix of water and chemicals into shale rocks to fracture them and release the gas. Environmentalists say the technology is highly risky. In Germany, only the northern state of Lower Saxony has decided to allow fracking, and then only under certain conditions.
Populous North Rhine-Westfalia has decided against fracking, even though a state geological service says more than 220 billion cubic meters of gas can be found in depths of up to 4,000 meters - significantly more than all of Germany's known conventionally extractable natural gas reserves, which total about 150 billion cubic meters. At an extraction rate of 12 billion cubic meters annually, the current reserves would last Germany little more than a decade.
Fracking in North Rhine-Westphalia would more than double that time span. 
It's not easy being hostage to your Greens. Easier to let a faraway country, of which wir nichts wissen, be taken by the (once) Red Army.

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