Energy crisis in Europe calls for creative measures | Popgen Tech
The global energy crisis remained a hot topic in 2022, as countries in Europe took measures to deal with rapidly rising natural gas and electricity prices after economic sanctions were imposed on Russia over the Ukraine war.
Some measures proposed by European politicians have also made headlines and been criticized.
Spanish PM: Ditch tie to save energy
Spain’s prime minister, Pedro Sanchez, offered a creative proposal to save energy by staying cooler: Shut down the tie.
“I’d like you to note that I’m not wearing a tie. That means we can all save from an energy point of view,” Sanchez said at a July 29 news conference.
He called on ministers and office workers to ditch their ties as one way to tackle the energy crisis.
“And I also want to ask the private sector that, if they haven’t already, when it’s not necessary, they shouldn’t wear a tie either, because that way we will all contribute to the energy savings that is necessary for our country.”
Sanchez was more likely to focus on cooling costs despite the controversy over how ditch ties would contribute to energy savings.
Swiss energy minister: Pooling together to save power
Simonetta Sommaruga, Switzerland’s environment minister, suggested that residents pool together to save energy.
In an interview, Sommaruga said that people “can turn off the computer when you don’t need it, or turn off lights, or shower together.”
Sommaruga tried to promote the government’s power saving plan but came under fire.
She responded to the backlash by saying she only wanted to “create awareness” about the country’s energy saving plan.
The Thuringian state parliament in Germany offers blankets to MPs
The Thuringian state parliament sent blankets to MPs at a meeting on 22 September to keep them warm amid cold temperatures.
“It is already very cold here,” said the president of the Thuringian state parliament, Birgit Pommer, during the plenary session in Erfurt.
“We have some blankets that are there now. Maybe leave them for the women for now.”
Germany has limited the heating temperature to a maximum of 19C (66F) for a public building.
Polish authorities encourage citizens to collect firewood from forests
The Polish government has told citizens to collect firewood amid rising energy costs.
“It is always possible, with the permission of foresters, to collect branches for fuel,” said Edward Siarka, deputy minister of climate and energy.
He noted that amid “the war in Ukraine and turmoil on the energy market,” inquiries to local forestry units about obtaining permission to collect firewood have increased.
“Our priority was to ensure that local communities have priority in the self-procurement of wood,” he said.
In addition to Poland, many Eastern European countries such as Hungary, Latvia, Estonia, Slovakia and Romania have relaxed timber rules, encouraging the cutting of trees to save gas.
European countries introduce measures against energy crisis
European countries have taken measures including capping energy prices, reducing taxes and lowering temperatures in public buildings to reduce energy costs.
France decided to limit heating and cooling levels in public buildings to no lower than 26C (78F) for air conditioners and no higher than 19C (66F) for heaters.
Shops in France and Spain must turn off their lights from 1am to 6am while heating in public buildings in Hungary is limited to 18C (64F).
The use of heating systems for swimming pools in Germany is prohibited.
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