CERES Hosts Russian Energy Conference
On October 29th, the Center for Eurasian, Russian, and East European Studies held its second conference on the geopolitics of energy. Pulitzer Prize winner Daniel Yergin, Chairman of Cambridge Energy Associates and one of the world's leading experts on both the history of energy during the Cold War and current global energy markets, delivered the keynote address.
Can you think of an important international issue in which energy is not a major factor?
Yergin characterized the past four years as a period of great change and focused on recent actions taken by Russian President Vladimir Putin. He argued that high taxation of oil production and the implementation of policies favoring state-owned Gazprom over private enterprise have led to vast inefficiencies and ushered in an era of "supply anxiety" worldwide.
In closing, Yergin posed a question to the panelists and audience: "Can you think of an important international issue in which energy is not a major factor?"
A diverse and distinguished group of panelists and speakers at the conference emphasized the need for innovation, increased efficiency and stability of supply and demand as the world seeks to find its way in the new energy climate. They included SFS Dean Robert Gallucci, CERES Director Angela Stent, Georgetown professors Celeste Wallander and Thane Gustafson, former Russian Deputy Energy Minister Vladimir Milov, and senior Brookings Institution fellow Clifford Gaddy.
Despite differences of opinion on specific issues, Yergin and the panelists agreed that the role of energy in state calculations of security is growing and, as Yergin remarked, that "what happens in the global energy market is not only affected by the marketplace, but by how nations manage their relations with other nations in this complex world."