Belgium is unlikely to experience power outages this winter, the European Network of Transmission System Operators (ENTSOE-E) has reported.
In its annual status report on the security of Europe's winter energy supply — released much earlier than usual this year, owing to the urgency of Europe's energy crisis — ENTSOE-E noted that even larger-than-expected problems with French or German energy supply would be unlikely to cause Belgium to experience winter blackouts.
In terms of its energy security, Belgium has a number of advantages over its immediate neighbours. Unlike the Netherlands or Germany, the country has never been seriously dependent on Russian oil or gas.
Moreover, Belgium benefits from a direct supply of gas via pipeline from Norway and the United Kingdom, as well as an LNG terminal in Zeebrugge that can import gas from around the world.
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In its report, ENTSOE-E stressed that Belgium could reduce the risk of blackouts to near-negligible levels if its citizens made a concerted effort to reduce their energy consumption.
Current EU guidelines recommend that Europeans reduce their electricity consumption by 5% at peak times, and by as much as 10% at others.