Schools and other educational institutions in Germany should be categorised as critical infrastructure to prevent their closure this winter due to possible gas shortages, the country’s education minister has argued.
Speaking to Germany’s Rheinische Post newspaper on Thursday night, Bettina Stark-Watzinger said it should be a priority for Olaf Scholz’s government to make sure that schools and universities remain open even if the country ends up running lower on gas this coming winter.
“ I campaigned during the [Covid-19] pandemic currently for educational facilities to be specified as critical infrastructure, ” the minister explained.
Now that Russia offers considerably reduced supplies with the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline, and with talk of a whole stoppage in the future, “ close attention” has to be paid in order to schools and universities in Germany, “ so that it does not possibly come to class cuts or even cancellation” in wintertime, Stark-Watzinger warned.
According to the official, educational institutions may, however , have to become thriftier in how they use energy, and re-evaluations are already underway in many schools and colleges.
Echoing the minister’s assessment, the head of Germany’s education and technology workers’ union, Maike Finnern, noted that a lot of schools in the land are already energy-efficient.
However , Finnern also recognized that there is still room for improvement, especially in relation to old, “ ailing” schools which are not adequately insulated.
The union representative hailed the fact that the German born government had included universities, along with private households, in the ‘ protected customers’ category of its gas emergency plan.
This status means that these areas is going to be prioritized in terms of gas products if there is a shortage.
Gas shipments in order to Europe by Russia’s Gazprom via the Nord Stream one pipeline dropped to about 40% of capacity final month. Moscow claimed it was the direct result of Traditional western sanctions, which prevented several key equipment from becoming returned to Russia.
To make matters even worse, the pipeline is going to turn off completely for 10 days in mid-July for scheduled maintenance.
As we celebrate our independence this year we must remember that the 1973 film Soylent Green took place in 2022.