- Actor Godreche denounces sexual violence in landmark French parliament hearing
- Ninety One UK Ltd - Form 8 (OPD) - Direct Line Insurance Group Plc
- Liverpool announce £9 mn loss for 2022/23 season
- Volt Joins Linebreak to Help Companies Maximize Edge Data Value
- Ailing Eiffel Tower dragged into power play for Paris city hall
- Norges Bank - Form 8.3 - Direct Line Insurance Group plc
- Leverkusen 'calm and optimistic' Alonso will stay
- MAG WELCOMES MAIN CONTRACTORS TO BID FOR THE CONSTRUCTION OF KETURAH RESERVE
- Putin warns West of nuclear war risk
- Heavy security in Chad capital after attack on intelligence HQ
- EU consumers challenge Meta paid service as privacy 'smokescreen'
- Healthy Innovation Conference explores the future of the sustainable food industry
- Lesaffre inaugurates a yeast plant in Indonesia, strengthening its presence in Asia Pacific
- World No1 Vu lies stroke behind surprise Singapore LPGA leader
- atNorth Announce Camilla O'Leary as Sales Director for Denmark and the DACH region as Expansion Strategy Continues
- SlotsCalendar Unveils Exciting Transformation into a Social Casino - Play, Compete, and Win!
- YOFC Unveils Cutting-edge Innovations at 2024 MWC Barcelona
- Baseball superstar Ohtani reveals he is 'now married'
- Vantage Markets Clinches Coveted Global "Best CFD Broker" Award for 2024
- Vantage UK receives "Best CFD Broker, Global" Award for 2024
- Paddle bolsters leadership team with new CPO, CFO and VP of People ahead of the next stage of global expansion
- HIKMICRO Unveils its 'Explore Daytime Hunting in a New Way' Vision at IWA 2024
- ATFX appoints FX pioneer Drew Niv as Chief Strategy Officer
- Neweast and Isuzu Launch Groundbreaking Partnership in KSA
- China's thriving outbound tourism contributes to global economic recovery
- Happiest Minds partners with Secureworks to deliver next-gen XDR Services
- Appian Partners with Symphony to Enable Compliant Financial Communications and Process Automation
- Bionical Solutions Appoints Chief Technology Officer to Create Innovative Data Products and Software for the Digital Business
- Baseball superstar Shohei Ohtani reveals he is 'now married'
- AliExpress Marks Choice Anniversary with Deals and New Ambassadors
- BioInnovation Institute welcomes twelve new companies to its Venture Lab program
- Zendure Unveils an All-in-One Energy Solution AIO 2400 for a Sustainable Future
- WISCO, China Unicom and ZTE recognized as "Best Mobile Innovation for Connected Economy" at the GLOMO Awards 2024
- CloudRAN.AI Launches at MWC 2024, Revolutionizing Private 5G for Industrial Transformation
- Mast Energy Developments PLC share price soars 35% after securing a funding agreement with RiverFort Global Opportunities PCC Limited for a facility o...
- Asia's richest man launches lavish pre-wedding party in India
- Zuckerberg, S. Korea's President Yoon talk AI cooperation
- Asian markets rise ahead of US inflation data
- Swiss to vote on retirement age, pensions
- Aptoide enables Mir Card payments for Russian users
- ANICAV advocate the importance of legumes in the Australian diet as the days get colder
- Rare Disease Day 2024 - Call for greater awareness of X-linked adrenoleukodystrophy and cerebral adrenoleukodystrophy - special film launched
- Karelian Diamond Resources Plc - Half-yearly results for the six months ended 30 November 2023
- Mid Wynd International Investment Trust Plc - Half-year Report
- Sygnum Bank, Hamilton Lane and Apex Group Expand Access to Private Markets via DLT-Registered Shares in USD 3.8bn Fund
- Conroy Gold & Natural Resources Plc - Half-yearly results for the six months ended 30 November 2023
- KR1 Plc - Unaudited Net Asset Value Update (January 2024)
- Tetragon Financial Group Limited January 2024 Monthly Factsheet
- Midea RAC Unveils IcyBlast Split AC at Big 5 Construct Saudi, Delivering Fast Cooling Experience
- Carbon credit scheme sees Indigenous Cambodians harassed, evicted: report
Low Rhine deepens Germany's energy crisis
A hot, dry July made worse by climate change has raised the risk that the German economy could run aground as sinking Rhine waters make shipping along the river harder.
The prospect of severe, longer-term limits to traffic spells a new headache for the industries lined up on the river's banks and threatens to further strain Germany's efforts to wean itself off Russian energy imports as coal counts among key cargo moved on the waterway.
Roberto Spranzi, boss of DTG, a shipping cooperative, says the volumes that his fleet can carry are already limited by the unusually low water levels.
"At the moment we have a capacity where, we have to use three or four vessels where we would normally need one," Spranzi tells AFP.
Pointing at the worrying ebb at the entrance to the inland port of Duisburg in western Germany, Spranzi notes that "currently it's at 1.70 metres (5.6 feet) In theory, the normal water level is over two metres".
Further up the river in Kaub, a noted bottleneck for shipping where the Rhine runs narrow and shallow, the reference level is forecast to go below 40 centimetres by the end of the week and squeeze traffic further.
"We supply factories on the Rhine with their raw materials. When that's not possible any more -- or less often -- that's a threat to German industry, too," Spranzi says.
- Coal power -
Around four percent of freight in Germany is carried via its waterways, including the Rhine, which winds its way from Switzerland, along the border with France, through Germany's industrial heartland and the Netherlands to the sea.
As Berlin turns to mothballed coal power capacity to plug the gap after Russia curtailed its energy deliveries, the Rhine has taken on added significance as a key artery for coal transport.
But the sinking water level has already led energy providers to warn they may have to limit output.
Uniper has said the low level of the Rhine may lead to the "irregular operation" of two of its coal plants into September.
EnBW, which runs sites in the southwestern region of Baden-Wurttermberg, has warned that deliveries of the fuel could be restricted.
The dwindling waters have seen "transport costs per tonne rise", EnBW said in a statement, adding that it had preemptively built stocks of coal earlier in the year.
Alternative routes were available -- either by road or rail -- but capacity was "tight", EnBW said.
The Rhine freight restrictions have added to the supply chain disruption seen by industry and increased the risk of scarcity.
Across southern Germany, a shortage of fuel at the pump has been traced back to the dry weather, among other factors.
"Low water levels on the Rhine mean that in this area very important transportation of oil products, such as petrol, diesel or heating oil can't operate as normal," says Alexander von Gersdorff, spokesman for the German energy and fuel industry lobby.
- 'Much earlier' -
A 2018 drought, which saw the Rhine's reference depth at Kaub fall as low as 25 centimetres in October, shaved 0.2 percent off German GDP that year, according to Deutsche Bank Research.
"The low levels have come much earlier this time," Deutsche Bank Research economist Marc Schattenberg tells AFP.
"If the problems we are now observing last longer (than in 2018), the loss of economic value becomes all the more serious."
Industrial heavyweights stationed along the Rhine rely on the waterway to ferry goods to and from their sites.
Duisburg-based conglomerate ThyssenKrupp said in a statement it had "taken measures" to assure its supplies of raw materials.
The chemical giant BASF, whose Ludwigshafen base sits south of the Kaub choke-point, said its production had not yet been limited by the low water levels, but warned that it could not rule out "reductions for specific units in the coming weeks".