Fracking Comes to the Arctic in a New Alaska Oil Boom

Alaska’s North Slope region, including the National Petroleum Reserve (NPRA), Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) and Trans-Alaska Pipeline (TAPS). US Geological Survey/Wikipedia

 

Arctic lands and waters hold irresistible allure for global oil companies. Despite opposition from environmental groups and President Obama’s 2016 ban on drilling in federal Arctic waters, exploration in Alaska has revealed massive new volumes of oil. The Conversation

This comes at a time of low oil prices, when many observers felt the Arctic would remain off limits. Alaska has proved precisely the opposite. Although it has gone largely unnoticed outside the industry, foreign firms are partnering with American companies to pursue these new possibilities. I expect this new wave of Arctic development will help increase US oil production and influence in world oil markets for at least the next several decades. Continue reading

Russia’s Arctic Dreams Have Chinese Characteristics

The most significant geophysical event on our planet since the end of the ice age is taking place today—the opening of the Arctic. As the High North maritime environment warms, the Arctic Ocean’s abundant energy, minerals, fish stocks, and other natural resources are becoming increasingly accessible, while new potential maritime routes promise to reduce shipping times and costs and accelerate ties between major commercial centers. These new opportunities for energy development, natural resources extraction, and shipping suggest that the region risks becoming an arena of intense competition, tension, and potentially even confrontation, not only between the United States and its two near-peer strategic competitors—China and Russia—but also among other Asia-Pacific states with observer status in the Arctic Council. Continue reading

‘Supergiant’ gas field discovered in Mediterranean

A “supergiant” gas field holding the equivalent of 5.5bn barrels of oil has been discovered off the coast of Egypt, the largest ever find in the Mediterranean.

Italian oil group Eni, which announced the discovery on Sunday, said the find was enough to supply Egypt with gas for decades, in a major boost to the country’s struggling economy.

The deepwater Zohr well, almost 5,000 feet below the water’s surface and covering 100 square kilometres (40 square miles), may hold 30 trillion cubic feet of gas or more. Eni said it would fast-track the development of the discovery to begin production as soon as possible.

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By removing Assad, Obama may be declaring war on China

President Obama is not the only actor with a red line on Syria. China, Russia and Iran also have their own red line on Damascus.

CNN on 12 November reported Obama administration is suddenly focused on removing Assad as the core of its anti-ISIS strategy, once again submitting to Turkey and Arab Gulf states that enabled ISIS to begin with, and are actually contributing very little to the anti-ISIS efforts to be dictating such orders to Washington.

Moreover, these demands are harmful to US security interests—redefining US anti-ISIS mission to one of anti-Assad mission—and thereby potentially drawing in Eurasian powers of China, Russia and Iran into open military conflict against the US. Continue reading

Turkish warship monitors Cyprus gas exploration

…and now we have factual proof as to why a German-led European Union had pushed Russia out of Cyprus and raided the cash vaults. It had nothing to do with corrupt Russian bankers, businessmen or shady politics. The hit was motivated by solidifying Europe’s future energy independence and positioning EU as a future world superpower. In previous posts, it was also mentioned that Greece would be the future corridor for forwarding energy from the Mediterranean, Middle East and northern African nations. Don’t count the ‘broke’ nation out of the game.

 

Turkey has sent a warship to the island of Cyprus to monitor a drillship that has been sent to search for natural gas reserves off the island’s coast.

Italian-Korean consortium ENI/KOGAS has sent the Bahamas flag-carrier Saipem 10000 drillship to the “Onasagoras” gas field in Block 9 of the island’s Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) on Tuesday.

In response, the Turkish navy has sent its Bafra Korveti warship to observe the drillship’s activities.

Greek Cypriot Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides said on Wednesday that hydrocarbon exploration in the region will continue despite Turkey’s objections, calling Turkey’s actions ‘potential harassment’.

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Pentagon Contractors Exploring Business with Iran

Multiple companies currently exploring new business ventures in Iran are also cashing in on highly lucrative contracts with the U.S. Defense Department, raising questions about whether their dealings with Iran could run afoul of U.S. law.

At least 13 major international companies have said in recent weeks that they aim to reenter the Iranian marketplace over the next several months. The companies have received Pentagon contracts totaling well over $107 billion, according to a Washington Free Beacon analysis that tracked DoD contracts awarded since fiscal year 2009. Continue reading

Cyprus signs LNG deal with US-Israeli partnership

As was predicted in a previous post, is being done. A ‘United States of Europe’ is slowly but surely being formed.

Cyprus inked a deal with a US-Israeli partnership on Wednesday to build a liquefied natural gas plant on the island to exploit untapped energy riches.

A memorandum of understanding was signed between Cyprus and a partnership comprising US-based Noble Energy International and Israeli companies Delek Drilling and Avner Oil Exploration to build a LNG facility at Vassiliko near the southern resort town of Limassol.

“The signing … represents the next milestone on the road map for the exploitation of gas reserves in Cyprus’ Exclusive Economic Zone,” said Cyprus Energy and Commerce Minister George Lakkotrypis at the official ceremony. Continue reading

Putin launches construction of key South Stream pipeline

President Vladimir Putin yesetrday launched construction of the long-awaited South Stream pipeline that the Kremlin hopes will pump Russia’s gas to Europe while avoiding its unpredictable neighbour Ukraine

The pipeline will flow underneath the Black Sea and through the Balkans to supply energy giant Gazprom’s big European clients with Russian gas and ensure the security of its energy exports. Continue reading