This is what politics and business in Hanover say

Hanover. Now consumers in Hanover are also feeling the effects of rising energy prices: Enercity wants gas and electricity to be significantly more expensive in the fall. But how safe is gas supply in winter? The prospect that gas for heating, hot water and industrial production may soon not be enough for everyone is already causing concern among Hanover residents and businesses. And the announcement by Enercity boss Susanna Zapreva that an energy supplier could shut down entire neighborhoods of Hanover for a day or two if pressure comes on adds to the uncertainty.

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Zapreva explained at an event on Tuesday that in Hanover, gas could be turned off and on for customers in specific areas. She said the order of possible downtime had already been determined but did not provide further details. And on Wednesday, Enercity did not explain what exactly the CEO meant. The company has been adapting different scenarios on a daily basis for weeks, the spokesman said only, and stressed that “obviously private customers and critical infrastructure are considered vulnerable.”

“Don’t just wear more sweaters”

Local Hanover politicians, however, are sensitive to Zapreva’s words. Lars Kelich, leader of the SPD parliamentary group on the city council, says Zapreva’s statement was violent. If closure cannot be avoided, social criteria should be used: “There are not only hospitals and social infrastructure. What about many people in need of care or the elderly? They often need warmth, and you can’t just say they should wear more sweaters. “

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The leader of the Green Party, Daniel Gardemin, demands that Enercity make every effort to keep the people of Hanover warm. “The supply of heat to apartments must have priority over office space, and also over industry.” It is not wise to exclude entire neighborhoods for one or two days, especially for elderly and disabled people.

“Stop as a last resort”

FDP leader Wilfried Engelke is also concerned about the elderly. If it did come a day of downtime, it would mean that all the fan heaters would be sold out and people would have to heat with expensive electricity, says Engelke, who runs the installation company. “Therefore, turning off the gas should be a last resort.”

The resulting supply bottlenecks are also difficult for businesses, but their requirements vary by location. For example, the Hanomag hardening plant in Marienwerder relies on a stable gas supply. Managing Director Karsten Seehafer only talks about Zapreva’s announcement: “We have a contract with Enercity until January 2023, so we assume they will follow the contract.”

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“We produce to the end.”

Without gas, production would have to stop and workers would have to do 100% shorter work. And without production, there would be no deliveries to customers such as VWN, Daimler and wind energy suppliers, says Seehafer. “We produce to the end.”

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By contrast, Continental does not provide any information on the use of natural gas at individual sites. “We are currently investigating the possibility of using alternative fuels in affected power plants in Europe in the event of a natural gas shortage,” says a spokesman for Conti.

Susanna Zapreva on Tuesday: On the list, the head of Enercity opened the largest charging park in northern Germany with Leif Wiedemann (Bauforum Hannover, left) and Mayor Belit Onay (Greens, right).

Natural gas is an essential part of the group’s energy mix in Germany, but the relationship varies widely, the company’s spokesman continues: Some plants are not affected at all because they do not use natural gas; others only used it for heating purposes, while others needed it directly in the production process.

oil as an alternative

The Hanoverian branch of the Krauss-Maffei engineering group, on the other hand, heats using a district heating network, produces electricity and does not need gas. And the manufacturer of baking ingredients, Martin Braun, based in Ricklingen, has found an alternative and can use oil instead of gas in an emergency in no time.

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At least 50 percent of the gas supply is desired, “but the systems can also run without gas, with a few exceptions,” says Jan Regendorp, director of finance and production at Martin Braun. “Our existing oil storage capacities cover short-term gas outages.”

Author: Katharina Kutsche and Mathias Klein

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