[Newsweek] Europe’s Energy Disunion

The EU had a plan to insure itself against Russia’s looming energy blackmail. Then came along France.

Jorge González-Gallarza

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MADRID, SPAIN — JUNE 30: French President Emmanuel Macron © chats with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz (L) before the start of the Heads of State North Atlantic Council round table meeting during the NATO Summit on June 30, 2022 in Madrid, Spain. During the summit in Madrid, NATO leaders will make the historic decision whether to increase the number of high-readiness troops above 300,000 to face the Russian threat. DENIS DOYLE/GETTY IMAGES

Europe has immense difficulty putting its money where its mouth is. Amidst ceaseless talk of “energy independence” in Brussels and national capitals, how much is the continent willing to invest to definitively wean itself off Russian gas? The figure would likely climb with the war’s every passing minute. The problem, however, is that there is no such figure. Despite the real prospect of blackouts this winter, Europe is not on the same page when it comes to energy. Late last week, the French Ministry of Ecology showed yet again its intent to stonewall Midi-Catalonia (MidCat), a half-built gas pipeline that would link up Germany and surrounding Russia-dependent countries to Algeria’s alternative supply through the Iberian Peninsula. Politicians and executives across Spain, MidCat’s main would-be beneficiaries, are understandably incensed.

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Jorge González-Gallarza

A writer in Paris, Jorge's work has featured in The Wall Street Journal, National Review, The American Conservative, The National Interest and elsewhere.