Politics, Geopolitics & Conflict
- Following a massive 20,000-ton diesel oil spill last week in the Ambarnaya River, which eventually feeds into the Arctic Ocean, Russian President Vladimir Putin has declared a state of emergency and is now training his sights on Norilsk Nickel tycoon Vladimir Potanin. Norilsk Nickel’s power plants in the Arctic area and the spill comes from its fuel tanks. The company is now under additional investigative scrutiny for failing to report to the authorities in a timely fashion. Norilsk has said it suspects the accident was the result of melting permafrost.
- Amid the intensifying standoff with Turkey, as noted above in our top story this week, Cyprus’ Natural Gas Infrastructure Company (ETYFA) has signed off on moving forward with the contract to build the island’s biggest-ever energy project: An LNG import terminal that has been awarded to a Chinese-led international consortium. The total project budget is 290 million euros.
- Indications are emerging that ISIS is again asserting itself into the Syrian oil equation, with a Thursday attack on a key oil installation in Deir Ez Zor in eastern Syria (an area controlled by Kurdish forces that are nominally backed by the US). Militants are said to have stormed the Azraq oil well in the Tanak oilfield, extorting payments for safe-passage for oil transports.
- Nicolas Maduro has put an end to fuel subsidies that Venezuelans have enjoyed for decades, in…