A large majority of Germans expect natural gas to become scarce this winter or next. In a survey by the opinion research institute YouGov on behalf of the German Press Agency, 29 percent said they expected a shortage this winter. 26 percent do not expect it until 2023/24. 29 percent believe that the gas supply is secured over both winters.
In the course of the Russian attack on Ukraine, gas supplies from Russia, which covered 55 percent of German consumption before the war, were stopped. Chancellor Olaf Scholz has stated several times that the gas supply is still secure for this winter. A few days ago, the SPD politician said that in an interview with the "Süddeutsche Zeitung" for the first time for the winter of 2023/24 - albeit with the caveat: "if nothing unforeseen happens".
However, even the voters of the coalition parties do not have much confidence in this prediction. Of the SPD supporters, 58 percent expect a gas shortage this or next winter. It is 56 percent of the voters of the Greens and 57 percent of those of the FDP. AfD supporters are most skeptical about the gas supply. Of them, 69 percent expect a shortage. It is 57 percent of the voters of the Union and 59 percent in the camp of the left.
Gas storage levels in Germany are increasing
Storage tanks play an important role in supplying gas in winter. They are normally filled up until the start of the heating season and tapped into during the winter months. Most recently, the filling level of German storage rose by a total of 0.37 points to 87.84 percent of the maximum value, according to data from the European storage association GIE on Monday. The background is the milder weather. In the middle of the month, when there was permafrost in large parts of Germany, the level fell by a percentage point a day. Another cold wave is not in sight for the time being.
The federal government and the network agency repeatedly appeal to consumers and the economy to use gas sparingly so that fuel does not have to be rationed. Netzagentur boss Klaus Müller tweeted on Christmas Eve that thanks to well-stocked storage facilities, the savings efforts ("thanks a lot for that") and additional gas imports, one could go into the holidays with confidence.