Users of public swimming pools and gyms in the German city of Hanover will soon be able to take a cold shower only. This measure was taken by the city council, among other things, in an effort to reduce energy consumption.
“Every kilowatt-hour counts,” says Hanover Mayor Belet Unai. ‘The current energy crisis is unpredictable.’ Elsewhere in Germany, lighting is turned off at monuments, among other things.
The mayor says the priority is “protecting critical infrastructure”. In all public buildings in Hanover, the thermostat must remain completely closed until October 1 as a precaution. After this date, a maximum temperature of 20 degrees is applied. Schools, hospitals and elderly care centers are excluded.
With these measures, Hanover hopes to save about 15 percent of energy, in line with European Union plans. The 27 countries of the European Union agreed on Tuesday to plans to prevent families, important businesses and hospitals from going without heating this winter.
In Berlin, about 200 searchlights that usually illuminate monuments on Wednesday were switched off. “Due to the war in Ukraine and Russian threats, it is important that we use our energy as accurately as possible,” a city council spokesman said. Previously, the temperature of heated outdoor swimming pools was reduced by two degrees.
German Economy Minister Robert Habeck said on Thursday that the amount consumers will pay for energy may be higher than previously expected. This is to prevent energy companies from going bankrupt.
Describing the challenges his country faces as “huge,” Habeck said: “We can’t say yet how much gas will cost in November, but the bad news is that this will probably be a few hundred euros per household.”
Before the war, Germany depended on Russian gas for much of its energy. To beat the winter, 95% of gas reserves must be filled by November. Currently, Germany has paid the surcharge at less than 67 percent. Part of the gas is also used in Germany to generate electricity.
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