Scholz channels Berlin Airlift spirit to gird Germans for winter

Chancellor Olaf Scholz invoked the spirit of the Berlin Airlift on Tuesday to implore Germans that "the seemingly impossible can succeed", urging them to brace for a tough winter and to rise to the challenge of a shift in energy supply away from Russian gas. He spoke to business leaders at Tempelhof Airport, which was the focal point of the Airlift between 1948 and 1949, when Western forces flew hundreds of thousands of tonnes of supplies into divided Berlin after the Soviets blocked rail and street access to the city's Western-occupied sectors.


Reuters | Berlin | Updated: 13-09-2022 15:58 IST | Created: 13-09-2022 15:43 IST
Scholz channels Berlin Airlift spirit to gird Germans for winter
Olaf Scholz Image Credit: Flickr
  • Country:
  • Germany

Chancellor Olaf Scholz invoked the spirit of the Berlin Airlift on Tuesday to implore Germans that "the seemingly impossible can succeed", urging them to brace for a tough winter and to rise to the challenge of a shift in energy supply away from Russian gas.

He spoke to business leaders at Tempelhof Airport, which was the focal point of the Airlift between 1948 and 1949, when Western forces flew hundreds of thousands of tonnes of supplies into divided Berlin after the Soviets blocked rail and street access to the city's Western-occupied sectors. Scholz said Germany wants to create a huge boom in the hydrogen industry as part of efforts to diversify its energy sources away from Russian gas.

Germany has filled its gas stores to some 88% of capacity to get through the winter as Russia cuts gas exports, and is looking to more sustainable long-term solutions. Describing hydrogen as the gas of the future, Scholz promised that Germany would "trigger a big boom".

"The Berlin Airlift was a technical and logistical tour de force," he added in a speech at the German Employers' Day. "But no one could be sure in advance that the operation would end well ... and yet everyone went ahead with it." "The Berlin Airlift proves that the seemingly impossible can succeed if we courageously set big goals and work together. This makes me confident in the face of the great tasks that lie ahead of us," he said. "Let us tackle the task together!"

Scholz said Germany would have the infrastructure necessary to import all the gas it needs by the end of 2023 and pointed to the construction of liquefied natural gas terminals off the country's coast. Scholz was in Canada last month to sign a deal to establish hydrogen supply chains, and Germany and Canada have been in discussions about building LNG terminals on the Canadian Atlantic coast within the next five years.

Hydrogen is a zero-carbon fuel best suited for powering large industrial machines, heavy vehicles and for heating.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

Give Feedback