With Russian President Vladimir Putin cutting off natural gas supplies, Northern Europeans are scrambling and reverting to firewood to heat their homes, boil water and cook. It is rapidly becoming a hedge against skyrocketing energy prices and uncertain fuel supplies.

Cuts in shipments of Russian natural gas, used to power electricity grids and heat homes, is the biggest factor driving rates higher. Suddenly, Europeans are facing firewood scarcities and bulging orders for wood furnaces.