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Energy dependency

with 11 comments

The power of Gazprom and Putin’s ambitions

This is the first time that I have dared to stray into foreign soil in this blog, which is normally reserved for U.K. and South Tyneside pieces, however there is a major plank of foreign policy and energy dependency about to be tested over the next ten to twenty years. It would serve you well to read this article by Craig Murray, former Ambassador to Uzbekistan and Head of the Foreign Office’s Maritime Section first, to understand (a) Britain and Western Europe’s current and future demands for gas, and (b) who is likely to become the monopolistic supplier if ambitions bear fruit.

If Craig’s assertions are right (and he has ruffled a few feathers in the Foreign Office over the past twelve months, particularly over the manuscript for his book) then we may face very troubled times ahead, as Britain and Europe sleepwalk into dependency on Vladimir Putin or his successors, a series of political establishments and economies would be under enormous strain and threat!

Perhaps our government has realised, just a little late, that our future energy supplies MUST involve the nuclear generation of electricity and a lowering demand for domestic gas, as well as massively increased production of renewable energy sources. Unfortunately because of the investment and research required for the renewables they are unlikely to provide the necessary contribution that we need over the next twenty years .

Russia’s planned stranglehold over the West’s gas supplies may sound like the stuff of James Bond movies, but their ambitions have already manifested themselves in the political and economic subjugation of many of it’s Central Asian and South Western former Soviet States, they are playing this power game for real. Power is held at the turn of a gas tap!

Nuclear energy may not be the most palatable alternative for everybody, but if it secures your energy needs as well as your liberty and security, without the need for armed conflict, then it can be used to blow a huge rasberry at Putin.

Written by curly

May 27, 2007 at 8:11 pm

11 Responses

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  1. Whilst Blair has focused upon Iraq, Afganistan and Iran as the major threats to the West, he has clearly neglected the significance of Russia and its deeply corrupt administration.

    Russia may be regarded as a democracy, but in reality opposition is practically non existent.

    Putin is holding the Baltic states to ransom over energy supply isses and if Europe doesn’t stop messing around we will soon have Russia threating to turn off the taps everytime it doesn’t get its own way.

    Gazprom cannot be treat like a regular commercial companny. To Putin it is an instrument of state.

    How many more journalists and political rivals of Putin have to be murdered in the UK before the government starts to take notice.

    Russia, under its current corrupt and twisted administration, cannot be trusted.

    David Potts

    May 27, 2007 at 8:52 pm

  2. Amen to that. A huge increase in nuclear power will at a stroke allow huge raspberries not only at the odious Putin but also to sundry Middle Eastern Ayatollas as well.

    Perry de Havilland

    May 27, 2007 at 11:45 pm

  3. We don’t need nukes and our future generations could do without the waste we leave them too. Import of any energy source represents a dependency on a foreign nation and/or global market price fluctuations – nukes included.

    The technology for renewables is already available – what’s missing is an adequate government commitment to support the industry. Just look at the farce over the micro renewables grants – it’s starting to put the farmers payments debacle to shame.

    rossinisbird

    May 27, 2007 at 11:46 pm

  4. Nuclear power – clean, cheap, safe and plentiful. Period.

    David Potts

    May 28, 2007 at 10:14 pm

  5. Potts – wrong, wrong, wrong and wrong. Period. Sounds like he’s after a job working for Iain Malcolm.

    rossinisbird

    May 29, 2007 at 11:00 pm

  6. Rossi, please feel free to call me David. “Potts” is sooooo impersonal.

    David Potts

    May 30, 2007 at 4:42 pm

  7. As one who has been working in the waste management industry in the UK for the past 25 years and having marvelled for most of them at the lack of government investment foresight in our industry, and also into developing our general UK capability in renewables.

    I can only concur that we must not sleepwalk any longer as a nation as far as energy supplies are concerned. Regretably, I do think that we are going to have to go for quite a bit of nuclear in the short to medium term, although it scares me.

    In waste management we have been given, from virtually nil government support for anything other than landfilling a very short timescale to develop a whole range of waste processing technologies.

    Due to the rush to implement there is a danger that the technologies which are proven now, and offer a “quick fix”, will get chosen and that some better technologies will get left out. Once the new facilities are built they will be run as-is for the terms of the mostly PPP Contracts under which they were let. This means we are locked-in to these methaods for good or bad for 15 to 20 years in most instances.

    My plea is that anaerobic digestion which produces sustainable power from waste, especially if used to process domestic wastes such as food waste, should be given the incentives it needs and in my view deserves. I rarely see anaerobic digestion mentioned in discussions. OK it is not a big player now, but the energy it could supply from a wide range of organic feedstocks is significant, and can I plea that it not be fogotten.

    I hope it is OK to include my link here? It is about Anaerobic Digestion and is all about renewable energy from waste materials here.

  8. […] the man trying to sell you a new gas contract, you should know there will be strings […]

  9. […] on from my recent posts about Russian gas supplier Gazprom and it’s leverage at the hands of Vladimir Putin, news […]

  10. […] warned in May of the dangers facing our energy supplies in the coming years as Russian giant Gazprom attempts to […]


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