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Political Chaos Hinders Lebanon's Oil And Gas Hopes

Politics, Geopolitics & Conflict

A month after TotalEnergies said it would finally start filling offshore Lebanon in the third quarter of this year, political chaos (again) threatens to throw a wrench in the fractured country’s plans to boost its failing economy and energy supplies with a hoped-for oil and/or gas discovery in the prolific Levant Basin. Lebanon has a vacant presidency and it’s largely depending on external forces to resolve it before it completely collapses. After 12 tries at electing a new president, the vacuum is set to implode, and the shifting dynamics across the Middle East (a Saudi/Iran detente, UAE normalization of relations with Israel, Iran’s stepped-up meddling in Syria, etc) always plays out by proxy in fragile Lebanon—a long-time venue of Sunni-Shi’ite tinderbox. That makes whatever happens next between Saudi Arabia and Iran of decisive importance to Beirut.

NATO will create a critical undersea infrastructure center to protect pipelines (among other undersea infrastructure) in the face of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. The new maritime security center will be headquartered in London. NATO leadership has noted that Russia has the capacity to map and “potentially to conduct actions against critical infrastructure”, including not only oil and gas pipelines but also thousands of kilometers of internet cables across the North Sea, the Baltic Sea, the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea.


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