Swiss residents who heat their homes to more than 19 degrees Celsius face up to three years in jail under strict new guidelines as Europe’s energy crisis bites.
The Swiss government has introduced a strict set of guidelines that it intends to implement if the gas runs out this winter.
In gas-heated buildings, rooms must only be heated to a maximum of 19 degrees Celsius.
Furthermore, water must only be heated to 60 degrees Celsius, and the use of radiant heaters and heated tents is prohibited.
Saunas and swimming pools must also remain cold.
Anyone who violates the guidelines faces a fine or even a prison sentence of up to three years, Swiss media are reporting.
Federal Department of Economic Affairs, Education and Research (WBF) spokesman Markus Spoerndli said: “Violations of the state supply law are always misdemeanours or even crimes in some cases and are to be prosecuted by the cantons ex officio.”
Swiss media said that fines could range from CHF 30 (GBP 27) to CHF 3,000 francs (GBP 2,670) per day, and that the rate would be determined according to the personal and economic circumstances of the perpetrator.
But WBF head Guy Parmelin, 62, said in a press conference on 31st August that there would be no witch hunt for so-called ‘energy sinners’.
He told reporters: “We are not a police state. The police won’t go to everyone – but there may be spot checks.”
Switzerland’s 26 cantons have until 22nd September to submit their concerns and suggestions regarding the new proposals.
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Story By: William McGee, Sub-Editor: Michael Leidig, Agency: Newsflash
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