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The Big Picture

Europe's Green Policy Holds Despite High Prices

Copyright © 2021 Energy Intelligence Group
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  • Soaring natural gas and carbon prices have spurred record wholesale electricity prices across Europe.
  • That raises the question of whether high energy prices could translate into social pushback that slows the energy transition.
  • But Europeans have not turned against green policies, and governments are offering relief from the price rally.

Wholesale electricity prices across Europe have been topping records following skyrocketing natural gas prices, climbing carbon prices and dipping wind power output. Gas availability has been especially scarce this year as Europe came out of a cold winter with the lowest inventories in years, amid low Russian gas sendout and an extended Norwegian upstream maintenance schedule. Spare LNG cargoes are meanwhile heading to the high-paying Asia-Pacific market, hungry for supplies as economies recover from the pandemic.

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