Russian Gas Supplies Through Ukraine Turned Off

The apparent strong-arm tactic may actually indicate Russian weakness. In a letter to leadership in European countries receiving Russian gas that first transits Ukraine, Russian President Vladimir Putin warned that unless immediate steps are taken to ensure Ukrainian national gas company Naftogaz pays in advance for supply, Gazprom could close the valves. The letter states:… Keep reading →

Louisiana Oil Industry Recovers From Katrina Devastation

Russia’s Gazprom twice increased natural gas prices charged to its Ukrainian counterpart last week. The initial increase was largely expected, as it represented the removal of a discount offered in conjunction with financial assistance – ie loans – from the Russian government. However, after violent protests led Ukraine’s Russian-leaning president to leave office, Russia rescinded… Keep reading →

Merkel And Medvedev Inaugurate Nord Stream Gas Pipeline

The Ukraine crisis has reinvigorated European efforts to diversify its natural gas supply sources away from Russia amid reliability concerns, but numerous obstacles stand in that path. “Added to that, Europe is contractually obliged to continue taking delivery of Russian gas. Bernstein makes the point that Gazprom has about 120 bcm of take-or-pay contracts –… Keep reading →

St. Petersburg International Economic Forum

The US LNG export debate received a shot in the arm for the Ukraine crisis, with several government officials calling for wholesale LNG export license approval that could ostensibly allow US companies to ship LNG to European gas consumers in the event of a Russian-initiated supply shortage. The only problem with that logic is exports… Keep reading →

OPAL Pipeline To Connect To Baltic Sea

Economic sanctions imposed on Russia by the US and EU in response to Crimea’s annexation from Ukraine are beginning to ripple through the energy industry. The South Stream pipeline that would bring Russian gas to Europe bypassing Ukraine was scheduled to start up in 2015. However, the pipeline now faces legal problems as companies involved… Keep reading →

Russian Gas Supplies Through Ukraine Turned Off

Skip down about halfway through this article if you’ve been following coverage of the Ukraine situation’s impact on European gas markets. The interesting stuff is towards the end where analysts discuss Gazprom’s gas pricing strategy aimed to undercut competition post-2020. It’s funny that the piece basically debunks its own headline. [Financial Times] US natural gas… Keep reading →

Crimean Parliament Seeks Formal Union With Russia

In one of the better pieces dealing with European gas supply issues associated with the Russia-Ukraine political crisis, this article cites a recent study published by the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies which pinpoints Ukrainian fiscal instability as the most likely cause of a European gas supply disruption. “The difficulties that Naftogaz Ukrainy is having,… Keep reading →

Tensions Grow In Crimea As Diplomatic Talks Continue

Ukraine’s political crisis continues, with Russian troops in Crimea, reformist forces in power in Kiev, and Europe, the US and Russia vying to broker a lasting solution. Just below the surface is the critical issue of natural gas. Europe gets approximately one-third of its gas from Russia and the majority passes through Ukraine. Will Ukraine… Keep reading →

Oil Boom Shifts The Landscape Of Rural North Dakota

In a wide-ranging interview, Maria van der Hoeven, chief executive of the International Energy Agency said US oil production growth – which is heavily leveraged toward light, tight oil – is expected to plateau and decline post 2025. “The light tight oil revolution in the United States is changing the geographical map of oil trade.… Keep reading →

Merkel And Medvedev Inaugurate Nord Stream Gas Pipeline

This concluding article in a 3-part series details Gazprom’s changing European natural gas export strategy as it bumps up against EU regulations designed to promote market liberalization by unbundling energy production, transmission, delivery and storage from single-company ownership. The new Gazprom-designed gas transit system outlined earlier in this series – here and here – is not… Keep reading →

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