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This Is How the Global Energy Crisis Ends

Things could get much worse before they get better

In the United States, filling up your car has become 46 percent more expensive in the last year—though those outside the country can only dream of paying $4.25 for a gallon of gas. In the U.K., the average price at the pump is closer to $9.77 a gallon. Austria and Germany are planning to ration natural gas usage in the face of high prices. And on April 1, U.K. consumers swallowed a 54 percent price increase to heat their homes. Meanwhile, Russian president Vladimir Putin has said customers must pay for Russian gas in rubles or face being cut off. In response to recent events, US president Joe Biden has dipped into the country’s strategic petroleum reserve, bringing it to its lowest levels in nearly 30 years. Despite that, a barrel of oil still costs 60 percent more than it did a year ago. Interventions to bring prices down haven’t worked.

Wherever you are and whatever you do, you have almost certainly felt the sting of the global energy crisis. And there’s no end in sight.

“We got into this mess long before the Ukraine war,” said Thierry Bros, professor of energy at the Sciences Po university in Paris. “But Putin also helped us get into this mess.” Bros points to Europe’s overdependence on energy giant Gazprom, which the Russian state owns a majority share in, making it impossible to replace all Russian gas overnight. Russia is the world’s second-biggest supplier of natural gas, behind the U.S., and third-biggest supplier of oil, behind the U.S. and Saudi Arabia. 

Please select this link to read the complete article from WIRED.

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