Obama said the crisis underscored the importance of diversifying Europe’s energy portfolio and investing in renewable fuels
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President Obama on Tuesday said the crisis in Ukraine “highlighted the need for greater energy security in Europe.”
During a meeting with Polish prime minister Donald Tusk, he called on leaders in Europe to expand and diversify their energy supplies.
Obama and Tusk met as EU and Russian negotiators were meeting in Brussels in hopes of brokering a deal to prevent Moscow from cutting off natural gas to Ukraine, a move that could disrupt gas flows throughout Europe. Some 15 percent of European energy comes from natural gas distributed from Russia through Ukranian pipelines, according to Bloomberg.
Russia has demanded that Ukraine clear $1.4 billion in debt for November and December, and attempted to hike gas rates to the country following the ouster of pro-Russian president Viktor Yanukovych.