France’s consumption of electricity and gas has decreased by 12% since last October, when an energy conservation program was launched in the country, Energy Transition Minister Agnès Pannier-Runacher said in an interview with the TV channel France 2.
As gas prices surged to historic highs during last year’s energy crisis and fears emerged of power outages due to the drop in supplies, France launched a conservation program – called ‘energy sobriety’ – dedicated to lowering power consumption by 10% by the end of 2024.
However, according to the minister, the country has managed to surpass this goal in half the time, which puts it “in a much better position than last year” and removes the risk of blackouts during the upcoming heating season.
Under the ‘energy sobriety’ program, the temperature in private houses and administrative buildings should not exceed 19 degrees Celsius and in warehouses it should be reduced to 16 degrees. Water heaters should be set at 55 degrees. The French authorities also approved a ban on displaying illuminated advertising between the hours of 1am and 6am and prohibited keeping store doors open when the heating or air conditioning is on. The time that stadium lights are kept on before and after matches is to be reduced by 50% during the day and by 30% in the evening.