While Russia is tough on Europe’s gas supply, the continent is looking towards a worrying energy future and it is not alone. With high gas and oil prices wreaking havoc around the world for months, experts warn there is no end in sight as the war in Ukraine continues.
In San Juan, the capital of Puerto Rico, people protested against the electricity grid operator LUMA Energy.
From Ecuador to South Africa, fuel shortages and power cuts have thrown import-dependent countries into economic turmoil. Desperate governments, on the other hand, struggle to find temporary solutions. In Sri Lanka, which is already collapsing under escalating crises, severe famines and days-long queues have forced authorities to issue work-from-home orders. Another country struggling to cope with power cuts is Pakistan. Panama has been rocked by protests amid rising prices, as the country has resorted to reducing the working week to ease the pressure of prolonged power outages. Hundreds of people demonstrated in San Juan, the capital of Puerto Rico, last week demanding that the island’s government cancel its contract with electricity grid operator LUMA Energy due to power outages and increases of salary. Protesters, including union leaders and community activists, say wages have risen steadily despite LUMA cuts that have left more than a third of the island in the dark. Ecuador is also struggling with rising fuel prices and costs, where deadly protests in June brought the country to a virtual standstill. Ghana and Cameroon are also in the throes of protests over fuel prices and shortages. The situation is similar in Argentina and Peru, where rising energy costs have fueled strikes and protests. Some countries are already in the dark. South Africa is suffering from constant power cuts as it grapples with one of the worst energy crises ever. The situation is similar in Cuba, which is crushed by widespread power cuts. The island faces severe fuel shortages, faulty power plants and widespread blackouts that test even the most patient.
In Jakarta, the public called on the local Indonesian bank to stop funding coal power in the city.
“WE HAVE NEVER SEEN THE WORST”
Stating that the crisis has affected almost every region and energy resource in the world, energy expert Jason Bordoff of Columbia University said the world’s first energy crisis was experienced globally. “The ripple effects are being seen around the world and I don’t think we’ve seen the worst yet,” Bordoff told Foreign Policy’s Christina Lu. Markets were already stretched before Russia invaded Ukraine due to a combination of the pandemic, supply chain slowdowns and weather shocks. This situation has been exacerbated by the drop in Russian gas exports, forcing Europe to look elsewhere for its supply and pushing up prices on the world market. Today, these challenges have worsened as extreme temperatures induced by climate change add fuel problems. “It’s just an interconnected global system,” Bordoff said. When you apply pressure in one place, it is felt in another place,” he said. The last major energy crisis in the world (but only for oil) dates back to the 1970s. OPEC had imposed an embargo which sent shock waves through the oil industry. Antoine Halff, an expert at the Center for Global Energy Policy at Columbia University, said the International Energy Agency caused this crisis and pushed industrialized countries to develop strategic reserves in anticipation of future supply disruptions. .
In Hungary, activists opposed the country’s import of Russian oil through the “Przyjazn” (friendship) pipeline.
THE FIRST NUCLEAR POWER PLANT IN EGYPT
Construction of the country’s first nuclear power plant has begun in Egypt. The plant will be built in the town of Al-Dabaa on the Mediterranean coast, about 300 kilometers northwest of Cairo. In accordance with the relevant contractual obligations, Russia will contribute to the training of personnel during the construction of the plant and provide support for the operation of the nuclear power plant.
In Sri Lanka, protesters have been demonstrating since January 28, complaining of fuel shortages.
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