US, European plans for Russia’s natural gas cutoff

Washington — US and European officials are coordinating with natural gas suppliers around the world to mitigate the effects of Russia’s cuts in energy supplies in the conflict over Ukraine, Biden administration officials said. I am saying.

U.S. and European allies have promised to punish economic and political sanctions if Russia moves troops to Ukraine, but Russia cuts off the supply of natural gas to Europe in the midst of winter. I am worried about the implications for Europeans from such sanctions, including the possibility.

Putin deployed an army of about 100,000 near the Ukrainian border for several weeks, causing a diplomatic crisis in Europe and the United States. He denies the intent of the invasion.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken said as part of a series of talks on Monday night, any measures taken by the United States and Europe against Russia “will affect others, including us.”

“It costs everyone,” Blinken said. “But we have made great efforts to mitigate the impact of sanctions on them and the possible retaliation measures Russia may take.”

Two senior U.S. government officials separately explained to reporters Tuesday about Biden’s efforts by the national security team to deal with the knock-on effect of sanctions. Authorities discussed the conditions of anonymity and discussed deliberations.

If necessary, Europe will turn to natural gas supplies in North Africa, the Middle East, Asia, and the United States. According to one of the officials, this effort will require “a fairly small amount from numerous sources” to supplement Russia’s cutoff.

The Biden administration has acknowledged that President Vladimir Putin is highly tolerant of the damage to the Russian economy due to sanctions. However, officials said a “start high, stay high” approach to the penalties that warned Russians in the negotiations could affect Putin’s calculations.

One official said sanctions that could spur Russia’s “mid-teens” inflation and a serious recession that did not help Putin “win the heart and mind” among Russians.

In the United States, a group of large industrial energy users and manufacturers who oppose US natural gas exports consider exceptions to help Europeans survive Russia’s natural gas cutoff potential. It seemed open to doing.

The US Industrial Energy Consumer Group has called on Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm to limit the export of liquefied natural gas (LNG). The group claims that the surge in US exports contributed to the rise in natural gas prices.

Group president Paul Sisio told reporters Tuesday that his group is not in a position on how the United States should respond to tensions between Russia and Europe over natural gas.

“My personal view is that if Europe needs gas, the United States should be there to supply our allies,” Cicio said, and China exports US gas. Said to be the largest recipient of.

“Are you capable of supplying your allies? Absolutely,” Cicio said. “But it may not be capable of shipping to China. Therefore, we need to be sensitive to the political crisis. That’s really serious.”

Ellen Knickmeyer, Aamer Madhani, Matthew Daly

Associated Press