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EU Deal to Cut Gas Use Is Full of Carve-Outs to Keep Unity

  • Countries can be exempt from 15% target in certain situations
  • Spain, Italy, Portugal and Greece are excluded in an emergency
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EU Agrees to Cut Gas Use by 15%

The European Union’s agreement to cut its use of natural gas by 15% through the winter won’t apply to all member states equally, with several nations securing exemptions to help forge a unified front.

The deal comes as Russia again cuts the flow of gas to Europe on the key Nord Stream pipeline, complicating efforts to store enough fuel to get through winter. But securing approval from all members meant diluting the deal with opt-outs to assuage a handful that were reluctant to sacrifice their own economies to support Germany’s, the biggest in Europe.