MOSCOW, 2 Oct — PRIME. The average rate of injection into underground gas storage facilities (UGS) of the European Union for the month decreased by about 30%, to 0.25 percentage points (p.p.) per day, follows from the data of the Association of Gas Infrastructure Operators of Europe (Gas Infrastructure Europe, GIE).
Now there are about 95 billion cubic meters of gas in European underground storage facilities, the European Union managed to fill gas storage facilities rather in spite of than thanks to the prevailing price situation, Ivan Timonin, a consultant with Vygon Consulting, shared his opinion with RIA Novosti.
“The task of filling the storage facilities in the context of the limited volume of Russian gas supplies was indeed extremely difficult. Its implementation was due, first of all, to a significant increase in LNG purchases: supplies, usually destined for Asia, were lured to Europe due to price premiums,” — Timonin noted.
In 2021, 75 million tons of LNG were supplied to European countries, and taking into account the current dynamics in 2022, the figure could grow by more than 1.5 times – up to about 120 million tons, he specified.
The total capacity of UGS facilities in the region is about 110 billion cubic meters, at present they are filled to 87.83%, which corresponds to about 95.3 billion cubic meters. At the same time, in the autumn-winter period, the EU, as a rule, consumes about 250 billion cubic meters, that is, current reserves can cover only about 40% of demand, the analyst notes. However, the materials of the European Commission reported that UGS facilities usually provide only 25-30% of the gas consumed in Europe in winter.
Gas injection in September was almost as intense as in September last year. At the same time, the average level of occupancy of EU underground storage facilities as of September 30 is about 13 percentage points higher than a year earlier, while in March, when the region was just emerging from the heating season, the gap was about 62 percentage points. Compared to the 2016-2020 average, on 30 September 2022 the average occupancy rate of underground storage facilities in the EU was about 1.7 percentage points lower, but slightly higher than on 30 September 2017 and 2018.
The average rate of gas injection into underground storage facilities of the European Union in May amounted to 0.45 percentage points, in June – 0.37 percentage points, in July – 0.36 percentage points, and in August – 0.37 percentage points.