France is preparing for possible targeted gas cuts at major consumers to deal with a possible interruption of Russian supplies next winter. This was indicated on Tuesday by the government and the manager of the distribution network.
“We are awaiting the release of a load shedding decree, which the government must release in the coming days,” said Laurence Poirier-Dietz, general manager of GRDF, the gas distribution network, during a press conference.
If individuals are not affected by these possible measures, the GRDF manager recalled that they could also easily save energy.
“The draft decree aims to specify the organization of the load shedding of natural gas consumption, that is to say the temporary and planned suppression of the supply of natural gas to certain consumers”, confirmed to AFP the Ministry of Ecological Transition. It is “a device of last resort”, underlines the ministry.
Turn down the heat, shorten the showers
“The draft decree provides for priority shedding of the largest consumers, consuming more than 5 GWh/year, numbering around 5,000”, according to the government.
The prefects will have to identify among these sites those carrying out missions of general interest (schools, hospitals, retirement homes, etc.), which will be spared, as well as those “likely to suffer major economic consequences in the event of load shedding”.
On the side of individuals, “there are fairly simple gestures which are effective quickly”, explained Laurence Poirier-Dietz: lower the heating, especially when you are absent or at night, shorten the showers …
An immediate interruption in Russian supplies “would have no consequence because we are at the end of winter”, “we have enough gas from other sources and storage to ensure until winter next,” said the manager.
But “the question will arise of the filling of storage, which happens during the summer”, she recalled. GRDF also estimates that France could reach 20% biogas by 2030, against an official target set at 10%.