Friday, April 04, 2014

Ukraine eyes coal after Russian gas price hike.

Ukraine's Western-backed leaders scrambled on Friday to find new sources of energy after Russia hiked its gas price by 80 percent in response to the overthrow of Kiev's pro-Kremlin regime.
The crisis-hit nation saw the amount it must pay for 1,000 cubic metres of blue fuel soar to $485.50 from $268.50 after Russia imposed two price increases in three days that reflected its deep displeasure with the ex-Soviet nation's new westward course.
Energy Minister Yuriy Prodan called Russia's new price "political" and vowed to explore solutions that included a heavier reliance on coal -- a polluting source of energy whose consumption has imperilled the air quality of nations such as China.

"We are now reviewing our electricity and fuel balance for 2014 with a view of using as much domestic coal as possible at the expense of natural gas," Prodan told a cabinet meeting in comments posted on the government website.
Ukraine has relied on coal throughout much of the past century despite efforts by global institutions such as the World Bank to help Kiev phase out its use following independence from Moscow.
The International Energy Agency estimates that coal accounts for about 30 percent of Ukraine's total energy supply compared to the 40 percent of the balance assumed by natural gas.

The nation of 46 million on the EU's eastern frontier is rich in resources but still imports about 30 percent of its needs due to inefficiencies and heavy state subsidies to both households and industries...........[]


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