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US and EU announce task force on reducing dependence on Russian oil and gas



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The Peakshaver liquid natural gas (LNG) installation and storage site, operated by NV Nederlandse Gasunie, at the Port of Rotterdam in Rotterdam, Netherlands. (Peter Boer/Bloomberg/Getty Images)

By Kevin Liptak, March 25 (CNN): US President Joe Biden and European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen on Friday announced a joint task force in an effort to wean Europe from its dependence on Russian oil and gas.

The panel, chaired by representatives from the White House and the European Commission, will aim to find alternative supplies of liquified natural gas and reduce overall demand for natural gas.

The United States will work toward supplying Europe with at least 15 billion cubic meters of liquified natural gas in 2022, in partnership with other nations, the White House said.

 

Europe's dependence on Russian gas and oil has proved a major sticking point in Western efforts to punish Moscow for its invasion of Ukraine. While the US banned Russian energy imports, Europe found it far more difficult to cut off its supplies.

The group will also work toward reducing greenhouse gas emissions by paring down methane emissions and using clean energy.