Coming on the heels of Berlin’s decision to phase out nuclear power, the recently signed memorandum of understanding between German utility RWE and Russia’s state-owned Gazprom to negotiate a joint venture on downstream gas and power plants could spell bad news for Europe on three levels. First, if it bears fruit, the partnership will undermine European diversification efforts, since RWE was the leading utility behind the European Union’s Nabucco pipeline designed to tap new Central Asian supplies. Second, it will bolster oil-indexed pricing schemes against the impact of wholesale spot prices, serving to keep prices on an “artificial” footing. Third, […]

article card

There’s a peaceful revolution underway on the windswept high plains of Bolivia. It’s about gaining access to power — electrical power, that is. Small communities now have access to electricity for the first time through solar and wind power systems.

article card

The Qatari energy corporation Qatargas recently signed a deal with Argentina to provide 16 percent of the Latin American country’s natural gas needs for 20 years. In an email interview, Giacomo Luciani, Princeton global scholar and scientific director of the international energy program at the Paris School of International Affairs, discussed Qatar’s natural gas industry. WPR: What is the extent of the global liquefied natural gas (LNG) market, and what is Qatar’s share, including its major LNG trade partners? Giacomo Luciani: The global LNG trade has been rapidly expanding and can be expected to continue to do so. According to […]

The Nord Stream natural gas pipeline has the potential to deliver much of northern Europe’s natural gas requirements from a reliable source in Siberia to the German coast. It is one of Russian energy giant Gazprom’s best-planned and most-ambitious projects, involving a consortium of construction firms around the Baltic region and investors from Europe’s major energy firms. Yet when the first of the project’s two planned pipelines through the Baltic Sea was completed in May, it became apparent that Nord Stream’s cost was much higher than originally projected. Though the impact will be felt by all of the project’s European […]

NEW DELHI — U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was in India yesterday for the second strategic dialogue between the two countries. The meeting’s agenda was dominated by the need to strengthen strategic counterterrorism and defense cooperation, iron out wrinkles over nuclear cooperation and adapt to the tectonic shift in the geopolitics of the Afghanistan-Pakistan region. The bilateral strategic dialogue was put into motion during Indian Foreign Minister S.M. Krishna’s visit to Washington in March. Though there was nothing to rival the high-adrenaline excitement surrounding the 2008 Indo-U.S. nuclear deal or the histrionics that characterized U.S. President Barack Obama’s November […]

As the Middle East undergoes historic changes, Saudi Arabia continues to gradually shift its foreign and defense policies to reflect both new realities in its region and changes in the global landscape. The two main components of this shift include an ongoing effort to deter Iran and enhance stability among its regional allies through a sizable buildup of its conventional military forces, including a proposed record $90 billion arms sale from the United States, and a broadening of its economic and political ties with emerging global powers such as China and India. Ties between Saudi Arabia and its longtime backer […]

article card

The announcement this week that Israel’s cabinet approved a new maritime demarcation agreement with Cyprus may pave the way for Israel to start tapping prized offshore oil and gas reserves in the Eastern Mediterranean. But it also exacerbates an already tense geopolitical standoff between Israel, Lebanon, Turkey and Cyprus surrounding the energy reserves, which, though relatively small compared to those in the Persian Gulf, are estimated to be worth billions. “You’ve got all the ingredients for a problem,” says James M. Dorsey, a World Politics Review contributor and senior research fellow at the National University of Singapore’s Middle East Institute. […]

After seven years of debate and impasse, the Nuclear Suppliers Group, a 46-nation group of nuclear technology suppliers, agreed at a meeting last month in the Netherlands to revise the guidelines for trade in enrichment and reprocessing (ENR) technology. The move was immediately criticized in India by the media and opposition parties as a reversal of the NSG’s 2008 waiver allowing the transfer to India of sensitive ENR technology, which can be used for the production of both nuclear energy and nuclear weapons. The NSG’s original guidelines dated from 1978, three years after the group was formed in response to […]

In the aftermath of Japan’s Fukushima disaster, many in the West have begun to question the wisdom of extending the lives of existing nuclear power plants as well as building new ones. But rising powers in Asia and developing countries in the Middle East have shown little desire to turn away from plans to develop nuclear energy. In this Special Report, World Politics Review examines the shifting nuclear landscape through articles published over the past 16 months. Below are links to each article in this special report, which subscribers can read in full. Subscribers can also download a .pdf version […]