Brussels' plan for energy independence

The EU Commission on Wednesday presented its RepowerEU plan, which aims to reduce dependence on Russian energy and accelerate the green transition. The EU plans to invest up to 300 billion euros in the form of loans and grants in the initiative. Massive investments, energy savings and a joint procurement mechanism similar to that for vaccines are also in the pipeline. An inspired project for the future or too much too fast?

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De Morgen (BE) /

The problems will intensify

This plan will cost hundreds of billions and demand high sacrifices from the member states, De Morgen points out:

“And then the political problems begin: Who will pay for all this? ... It's significant that Hungary has already been blocking the European boycott of Russian oil for two weeks. There is a risk that the EU won't even have to decide for itself and Putin will take care of it instead. He has already cut off Poland and Bulgaria from Russian gas because they refuse to pay in roubles. In the next few months, other countries may get the same treatment.”

Interia (PL) /

Putin has given the EU a boost

Interia is thrilled:

“Putin has turned off the gas tap for Poland and Bulgaria? Here's the answer: EU Commission chief Ursula von der Leyen has presented the REPowerEU plan. ... European unity today is not a pipe dream of bureaucrats, but an idea for the future. A common threat that is real and tangible unites the continent. It has awakened people from their lethargy and calls for ambitious plans for the future. We finally have a goal! A common goal! A European idea! In this way Vladimir Putin has injected new life into the European Union and given it a new raison d'être.”

Il Manifesto (IT) /

War a huge setback for the climate

Increased reliance on coal and oil instead of gas is worsening air pollution and global warming once more, Il Manifesto warns:

“According to the World Health Organisation, more than four million people died from air pollution in 2016. ... And it not only kills those alive today, but also those who are children now or who have not yet been born. ... The war in Ukraine is also causing a major global slowdown in the fight against climate change and is not only responsible for death, destruction and migration today, but is also partly responsible for the death, destruction and migration that will occur all over the world in the coming decades due to weather catastrophes and reduced food production.”