Leaders of many of the world’s most powerful economies plan to gather Sunday in Germany, where Chancellor Olaf Scholz and his government are grappling with a gas supply crisis that’s raising alarm bells.
The volatile energy situation in Germany and elsewhere is expected to take center stage at the Group of Seven talks — overshadowing plans to address climate change and potentially driving leaders to backtrack on commitments to end international fossil fuel investments this year.
It’s a sharp turn from when G-7 leaders met a year ago in Cornwall, England. And it’s yet another example of how Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has scrambled the geopolitics of climate and energy.
With Europe — Germany in particular — having to urgently replace the Russian gas that they had relied upon for so long, “there’s a risk that Europe doesn’t defend that position that the G-7 need to show leadership and not invest in fossil fuels anywhere,” said Alex Scott, program lead for climate diplomacy and geopolitics at E3G, a think tank.
So far, the signs are not looking good.
Reduced gas flows from Russia have triggered a return to coal in Germany, Europe’s industrial powerhouse. Germany yesterday raised its emergency gas plan to alarm stage, a signal to households and industries of a supply shortage. In addition, Germany is looking to expand where it gets …