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European countries roll out measures for reducing energy consumption

Some European countries have rolled out measures for reducing unnecessary gas consumption amid the energy crisis caused by the natural gas inflow cut from the Nord Stream 1 pipeline, as well as by the heat wave hitting the continent.

The energy ministers of the European Union (EU) agreed on Tuesday on a voluntary savings target of 15 percent compared to a country’s average consumption over the past five years, until the end of March 2023.

Responding to the energy saving deal, Germany has switched off the overnight lighting of a number of monuments and historic buildings, including the city hall and Berlin State Opera.

Some of Berlin’s most famous landmarks are looking much darker these summer nights. That’s because they have turned their lights off as part of Germany’s effort to conserve as much energy as possible before winter.

— DW Global Ideas & Environment (@dw_environment) August 1, 2022
The northern city of Hannover no longer offers hot showers in public pools in reaction to the energy crisis. Public buildings in other few cities have also halted the heating to the pools as part of the city’s energy-saving campaign.

The Spanish government issued similar restrictive orders on Tuesday, including prohibiting air conditioning in public and commercial establishments from being set to lower than 27 degrees Celsius in summer or higher than 19 degrees Celsius in winter. In addition, commercial venues are no longer to be illuminated after 10 pm.

🇪🇸 Spain has unveiled a plan to moderate aircon, heating and lighting in public spaces as part of an EU-wide effort to limit Russian gas imports.

Heating will be kept to a maximum of 19 degrees in the winter and a minimum of 27 degrees in the summer, the government said.

— euronews (@euronews) August 2, 2022
According to policies, businesses could face fines of EUR 60,000-600,000 for violation of the related rules.

In turn, several French cities will also introduce fines for leaving doors open while running air conditioning in stores. The city of Aureilhan, in the south part of the country, has been turning off more than 1,700 street lights from 11 pm to 6 am at night beginning in mid-July in a bid to save energy.

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