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Europe’s natural gas demand drops more than a quarter



Gas demand has shrunk by almost a quarter but we have not yet reached the frosty depths of winter. Leonid Ikan/Shutterstock

Gas demand has shrunk by almost a quarter but we have not yet reached the frosty depths of winter. Leonid Ikan/Shutterstock

Europe shrunk its natural gas demand by over a quarter in the first half of November, aided, in part, by a warm October.

Europe’s total natural gas demand over the first half of November dropped 26% below the bloc’s five-year average, early figures from energy intelligence service ICIS show, placing it a full 11 percentage points below the European Commission’s recommended 15% cut between 1 August 2022 and 31 March 2023.

In the first half of November, Europe’s gas demand was 140TWH, versus a five-year average of 190TWH, according to the ICIS figures. The steep decline is not isolated--natural gas demand in the full month of October was 24% below the five-year average and in September, 13% below.

However, Europe has also enjoyed the warmest October on record, according to scientists from US scientific and regulatory agency the National Centers for Environmental Information.

Luxembourg’s energy ministry announced in November that its natural gas consumption in October had reduced by 36%. Demand figures were not communicated.

Falling demand for natural gas has hit wholesale gas prices across Europe, which have come down from their record-breaking highs over the summer.