Energy

34 Items

Transformed Gas Markets Fuel US-Russian Rivalry, But Europe Plays Key Role Too

Max Avdeev/Flikr

Analysis & Opinions - Russia Matters

Transformed Gas Markets Fuel US-Russian Rivalry, But Europe Plays Key Role Too

| May 30, 2018

This month, the Wall Street Journal reported that U.S. President Donald Trump has been pressuring Germany to drop its support for a major new Russian gas pipeline if Europe wants to avoid a trade war with Washington, while a senior U.S. diplomat warned that the project could be hit with U.S. sanctions; Russian President Vladimir Putin responded defiantly. This development, sadly, fuels the further politicization of the European gas market—a space that, in many ways, has reflected the triumphs of a depoliticized, pro-market technocracy, which has managed to stimulate competition and lower prices irrespective of changing political trends. Just last year, Trump called on European countries to buy American liquefied natural gas, or LNG, which, for now, remains more expensive than Russia’s pipeline gas. Certainly, the U.S. has much to gain on the global gas market, which has changed drastically over the past decade, as America rapidly transformed from an importer to an exporter. Europe’s gas market, meanwhile, has much to gain from additional supply. But Trump’s approach, especially if the latest reports are true, both alienates Western European partners and feeds into a sensationalist, simplistic portrayal of the new U.S. role’s effect on Russia—as a zero-sum game, in which these new, plentiful U.S. gas supplies serve as an antidote to Russia's “gas dominance” in Europe and hence to Moscow's political leverage.

U.S. Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz and Head of the Iranian Atomic Energy Organization Ali Akbar Salehi, left, meet at an hotel in Vienna, July 9, 2015

AP

Analysis & Opinions - Scientific American

How International Cooperation in Research Advances Both Science and Diplomacy

| Apr. 27, 2017

"The partial budget blueprint released by the White House recently will put U.S. leadership in science and technology at serious risk if Congress goes along. In addition to the obvious damage that would result from the proposed $5.8 billion cut at NIH, the $2 billion cut in applied energy R&D, the $900 million cut in DOE’s Office of Science, the abolition of ARPA-E, and the research cuts at NOAA and EPA, a less immediately obvious potential casualty would be U.S. scientific cooperation with a wide variety of other countries on a wide variety of topics."

Gas pipeline Dzuarikau-Tskhinval

Wikimedia Commons

Journal Article - Elsevier Inc. Energy Research & Social Science

Invisible but not indivisible: Russia, the European Union, and the importance of “Hidden Governance”

| February 2016

This article considers a number of political explanations for gas policy and shows that it is usually the economic interests of big energy firms that frequently take precedence, although these are often ignored and hidden as factors.

The EU Regulatory State, Commission Leadership and External Energy Governance

Palgrave Macmillan

Book Chapter - Palgrave Macmillan

The EU Regulatory State, Commission Leadership and External Energy Governance

| 2015

The chapter discusses the EU as an actor in global energy, and shows that the EU – short of a strong set of policy tools – relies more than other players on exporting its own rules. It explores the areas in which the Commission is capable of exerting (regulatory) external power in the energy sector and assesses the Commission's actions with regards to the challenges facing the EU along the energy value chain: upstream, midstream and downstream.

Biggest nuclear power station in Europe; about 150 km from Zaporozhye, Ukraine.

Creative Commons

Journal Article - Global Policy

Energy Security in the Wake of the Ukraine Crisis

| July 23, 2015

Ever since the 1973 oil embargo, and especially since the Russian-Ukrainian gas crisis of 2006, Western policy makers have paid a great deal of attention to energy security. Yet there is no consensus as to what energy security is, what methodologies are most useful for conceptualizing and operationalizing the term, or even whether it is possible to generalize about anything as complex and contextually dependent as energy security. This enormous diversity of theoretical, methodological, and epistemological perspectives on the study of energy security complicates any assessment of the state of the field. It is, however, precisely because ‘energy security’ is such an elusive concept that academics, statesmen, and analysts of energy politics should not strive to coalesce around one precise definition.

Gazprom Headquarters in Moscow, Russia

Creative Commons

Journal Article - Cadmus EUI Research Repository

Between a Rock and a Hard Place: International Market Dynamics, Domestic Politics and Gazprom's Strategy

| 2015

Gazprom, Russian's prime state owned gas producer, is facing severe pressure stemming from international gas market dynamics, EU regulation and the Ukraine crisis. Slowing gas demand coupled with shifting pricing models and a persisting transit issue pose significant challenges for Gazprom's business going forward.

Saipem Scarabeo 7 semi-submersible drilling rig docked in Cape Town

Wikipedia Commons

Journal Article - Contemporary Italian Politics

Italy’s Path to Gas Liberalisation

| April 23, 2015

 

Existing studies show that, on average, national champions in energy-rich states tend to ‘stick around’ by maintaining strong links with their respective governments in the distribution of rents. Yet the foundations of preference formation—the particular role of national champions, their relationship to their respective governments and a limited number of third suppliers in that process—have neither been theorised nor investigated empirically in countries that are net importers of gas.

Russia and China sign a $400 billion gas deal

Wikimedia Commons

Paper

The Sino-Russian Rapprochement: Energy Relations in a New Era

| March 2015

The United States could enhance or threaten China’s energy security but China was unsure of the U.S. intentions. China and the United States were both friends and potential foes. In the meantime, Russia’s own ambivalent relationship with the United States and its Western allies has worsened. In this context, China and Russia have grown closer. 

Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping shake hands during a signing ceremony in Beijing, Nov. 9, 2014.

AP Images

Analysis & Opinions - Bloomberg Opinion

New China-Russia Gas Pact Is No Big Deal

| November 14, 2014

The latest China-Russia gas deal, declared on the arrival of Russian President Vladimir Putin in Beijing this week, got far more attention than it deserved.  Eager to add fuel to the narrative of an emerging strategic relationship between Beijing and Moscow, commentators pronounced the deal as a game-changer, a symbol of a new partnership between long-estranged countries.  Yet, a look beyond the words of Russian gas executives (always a good idea) suggests that there is much more hype than substance here. The deal seems to be little more than an effort to ensure that Putin did not leave China empty-handed, particularly in the wake of a big U.S.-China declaration on climate.