Southern rebellion threatens to sink EU gas rationing plan,

A group of European Union countries mainly from the south has already shot down Brussels’ bid to grant itself the power to ration gas around the bloc less than 24 hours after the debut of the proposal Wednesday.

The emergency measure — widely perceived as being designed to save Berlin should its gas link to Russia, the Nord Stream pipeline, stop operating — would allow the EU executive to impose a mandatory 15 percent cut in gas consumption from August to May. Such action could be ”triggered at any moment,” should scarce supplies make sharing necessary among EU neighbors.

But ministers in Poland, Portugal, Spain, Cyprus and Greece have already emphatically said ”no” to the proposed power grab and binding gas consumption reductions, while three EU diplomats confirmed there are currently not enough votes to pass the new rules. Approval requires a qualified majority — 15 countries representing 65 percent of the bloc’s population. Individual vetoes are not allowed under the controversial emergency procedure.

Hungary has taken a step further, announcing it has no intention of letting any gas leave its borders beginning next month. Hungarian Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó actually boarded a flight to Moscow on Thursday in a bid to buy more Russian supplies while it’s still possible. Läs artikel