Extreme wintry weather is taking its toll on energy supplies with Russia unable to meet the needs of several European countries. Hungary and Romania are among those reporting a drop in gas deliveries.
Italy says it has had to dip into its reserves. According to Anatoly Chubais, the head of Russia’s state-controlled power monopoly, the energy giant Gazprom has limited supplies. The firm itself says it is actually providing more gas than required by its contractual obligations.
However it acknowledges that it is unable to keep up with some foreign demand. Temperatures have dipped below minus 50 in Siberia. In central Russia, meanwhile, the Arctic conditions have proved tragic.
A minibus fell through ice in the city of Nizhny Novgorod. Six passengers are feared dead. Russia is a country that is no strange to wintry weather.
But its current cold snap is something experts say normally happens only once in a generation.
In Moscow, it is the coldest January for at least ten years.
Misery for motorists is just one consequence of the big chill.
Since the start of the winter, the extreme weather has claimed over 100 lives in the capital.