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EU leaders fail to agree on deadline to phase out Russian energy


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The Washington Examiner

Breanne Deppisch, Energy and Environment Reporter

March 12, 2022

As European Union leaders wrapped their two-day summit in Versailles, France, on Friday, they did so without reaching consensus on one key issue: when to end the bloc’s outsize energy dependence on Russia.

In a joint statement filed Friday evening local time, EU leaders were unsparing in their condemnation of Russian President Vladimir Putin and his country’s invasion of Ukraine, which leaders said “brought war back to Europe” and is inflicting “unspeakable” suffering on the population of Ukraine.

They also vowed to phase out their dependency on Russian gas, oil, and coal imports “as soon as possible.”

But after two days of intense discussions regarding both the future of Ukraine and to bloc’s own dependence on Russia, leaders failed to settle on a firm date as to when.

Earlier this week, the EU released a proposal to phase out two-thirds of its Russian gas imports by the end of this year and end all imports of Russian energy supplies “well before” 2030.

On Thursday, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen suggested the bloc commit to 2027 as a firm deadline for ending the imports.

Instead, members slow-walked the decision even further, asking Brussels on Friday to put forward a proposal in May.

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