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Gas Supply Crunch Thwarts EU’s Plan to Kill Off Coal Power

May 24, 2018, 2:21 PM

Europe wants its industry to burn more natural gas instead of coal to reduce global warming. The problem is, there isn’t enough gas at the right price.

Depleted gas stores after the coldest winter since 2012, coupled with pipeline constraints on flows from Russia and Norway, have driven prices to their highest level in at least five years. The result: generating electricity from gas is unprofitable for many utilities, according to Bloomberg calculations based on the cost of fuel, power and emission permits.

The upward drift in gas prices complicates the plans of policy makers from German Chancellor Angela Merkel ...