An Excerpt of “Energy Geopolitics,” for the Foreign Policy Association, and the Wood County Committee on Aging’s Great Decisions Lecture Series, 2023, Bowling Green (21 January 2023)
When the Russians invaded the Ukraine last February, they hoped to use Europe’s dependence on Russian energy deliveries, particularly gas, to soften the reaction of the West, and perhaps also to split the West’s reaction to Russian aggression.
They hoped in particular that the Germans would remain somewhat conciliatory. Russia was supplying the EU with 40% of its natural gas before the war began. Natural gas constituted 25% of Germany’s energy supply, and Russia supplied 55% of Germany’s gas consumption. Moreover, Germany and Russia were about to open Nordstream II, the second major pipeline under the Baltic Sea, which permitted the direct shipment of Russian gas to Germany, without passing through Polish or Ukrainian territory.Continue reading