After Vladimir Putin invaded Ukraine and the U.S. mandated that the West impose strict sanctions on Russia, including a ban on importation of Russian gas and oil, Germany found itself in a huge dilemma: Without Moscow's energy, the 'green infrastructure' that existed in the country was found lacking and unable to power the country's robust industry, let alone homes and businesses.
So now, "Germany is bleeding cash to keep the lights on," according to a Reuters report, having burned through "almost half a trillion dollars, and counting, since the Ukraine war jolted it into an energy crisis nine months ago."
The report continued:
That's the cumulative scale of the bailouts and schemes the Berlin government has launched to prop up the country's energy system since prices rocketed and it lost access to gas from main supplier Russia, according to Reuters calculations.
And it may not be enough.
"How severe this crisis will be and how long it will last greatly depends on how the energy crisis will develop," Michael Groemling at the German Economic Institute (IW) told the outlet, adding: "The national economy as a whole is facing a huge loss of wealth."
Reuters reported that so far, Germany has set aside around $465 billion, or 440 billion euros, according to available figures, which is likely just the first installment of funds to keep the country from running out of power and to help secure additional forms of energy, especially now that winter is here.
The preeminent economic power in all of Europe, the German people -- thanks to their leaders -- are now going to be at the mercy of the weather.
"The German economy is now in a very critical phase because the future of energy supply is more uncertain than ever," Stefan Kooths, vice president and research director of business cycles and growth at the Kiel Institute for the World Economy, told the newswire service. "Where does the German economy stand? If we look at price inflation, it has a high fever."
Many have blamed Germany's current situation almost solely on the loss of fossil fuel energy from Russia, but that is disingenuous at best and an outright lie at worst.
According to a report from Forbes:
The International Energy Agency is at it again. In May 2021, it issued an astonishing report calling for an end to all investments in oil, gas and coal to reach the fantasy goal of net zero by 2050. Now, as the world grapples with an energy crisis with surging prices of fuels, fertilizers and food, the organization issued its new report on Renewables 2022 last Tuesday. The organization’s chief Fatih Birol tweeted “big news”, claiming that “the world is set to add as much renewable power in the next 5 years as it did in the whole of the past 20 years as countries seek to take advantage of renewables' energy security benefits”. The mainstream press loyally reported the IEA’s claims of a “renewable energy rollout ‘turbocharged’ by global energy crisis."
The IEA finds that the disruptions to Russia’s supplies of fossil fuel exports have shown “the energy security benefits of domestically generated renewable electricity, leading many countries to strengthen policies supporting renewables”. The report asserts that higher fossil fuel prices worldwide have improved the competitiveness of solar PV and wind generation against other fuels.
But that is completely bogus: Forbes goes on to note that the over-reliance on green energy coupled with an under-investment in reliable (and cheaper) fossil fuels is what has led to Germany's power crisis, along with Europe as a whole.
The outlet blamed the IEA's wrongheaded conclusions on the adoption of a green energy ideology over science-based factual data.
"The glowing forecasts for renewable energy presented by the IEA seem free of the laws of physics and written to promote an agenda. The descent of the once leading organization — devoted to rigorous analysis of energy economics and its policy consequences for its OECD member countries — into advocacy and shoddy analysis for the Green cause is complete," the Forbes report notes.
"Fixated on spurious models that allegedly link carbon dioxide emissions to apocalyptic forecasts of global warming, the IEA couldn’t care less about the intolerable financial burdens imposed on ordinary people that need affordable food, heating (or cooling), lighting and mobility," the report continues. "Worse still, it is intent on imposing its climate change predilections on the vast majority of the world’s population that live in developing countries. But people are connecting the dots between the West’s incoherent ideological energy policies and the adverse impacts on their livelihoods."
It's about time; Germans are learning the lesson first.