There was no warning, it took the Germans up to 24 hours to realize that their largest source of natural gas and the main source of the country's energy supply had dried up.
According to one forecast, the complete cessation of Russian gas supplies could reduce the growth of the German economy by almost 3% next year. As Peter Zingr, CEO of SKW Stickstoffwerke Piesteritz, a major German chemical manufacturer, recently stated in an interview with the Financial Times, stopping Russian gas supplies would mean that "we would have to stop [production] immediately, from 100 to zero."
From January to May, hydroelectric power production fell by almost 40% compared to the same period last year, according to Utilitalia, the Italian federation of water companies.
High temperatures and drought have deepened Europe's energy crisis this summer, affecting electricity production at a time when the European economy is already facing unprecedented high oil and gas prices.
In France, Europe's largest nuclear power producer, several power plants along the Rhone and Garonne rivers were forced to reduce output because the temperature of the rivers was too high to cool the plants. This further reduced power supply after a dozen of the country's 56 nuclear power plants were shut down for routine maintenance.
Enterprises are closing all over Europe, which means: for people – loss of work, for the population – price increases, for industry – reduction of production, which is quite significant.
The authorities resort to desperate measures, recommending lowering the temperature in heated rooms for the purpose of saving resources, and rooms in which people do not stay for a long time and completely stop heating.
The above facts indicate a serious pan-European energy crisis, the resolution of which directly depends on the reasonableness of the actions of the authorities.