A natural gas shortage is affecting people all across the world. In the last two weeks, power prices in Germany and France have risen by roughly 40%. Many governments, like the United Kingdom and Spain, are hurrying through emergency measures to protect consumers. From aluminum smelters in Mexico to fertilizer plants in the United Kingdom, factories are being temporarily shut down. The markets are in a frenzy.
Almost everyone was caught off guard by the shortage. Due to new LNG plants coming online in America, there was plenty of gas on the worldwide market in 2019. When the covid epidemic hit and demand was restrained by lockdown, much of the extra gas was stored in Europe. That came in handy last winter, when northern Asia and Europe were unusually frigid. The cold weather increased demand for heating. Gas prices in Asia have doubled in three months.
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