• 4 minutes England Running Out of Water?
  • 7 minutes Trump to Make Allies Pay More to Host US Bases
  • 10 minutes U.S. Shale Output may Start Dropping Next Year
  • 14 minutes Washington Eyes Crackdown On OPEC
  • 1 min One Last Warning For The U.S. Shale Patch
  • 8 hours Russian Effect: U.S. May Soon Pause Preparations For Delivering F-35s To Turkey
  • 7 hours Poll: Will Renewables Save the World?
  • 7 hours China's Expansion: Italy Leads Europe Into China’s Embrace
  • 2 hours Chile Tests Floating Solar Farm
  • 7 hours New Rebate For EVs in Canada
  • 6 hours Trump Tariffs On China Working
  • 10 hours The Political Debacle: Brexit delayed
  • 20 mins Trump sells out his base to please Wallstreet and Oil industry
  • 22 hours Oil-sands recovery by solvents has started on a trial basis; first loads now shipped.
  • 16 hours Boeing Faces Safety Questions After Second 737 Crash In Five Months
  • 5 hours 3 Pipes: EPIC 900K, CACTUS II 670K, GREY OAKS 800K
  • 9 hours Biomass, Ethanol No Longer Green
Alt Text

Qatar’s Ace-In-The-Hole Against The Saudi Boycott

Saudi Arabia’s boycott against Qatar…

Alt Text

Gas Mergers Could Pressure Prices In Europe

The merger of the PEG-Nord…

Alt Text

LNG Sector Dangerously Dependent On Chinese Demand

Industry executives warned that the…

Daniel J. Graeber

Daniel J. Graeber

Daniel Graeber is a writer and political analyst based in Michigan. His work on matters related to the geopolitical aspects of the global energy sector,…

More Info

Trending Discussions

TAPI: A Paper Tiger Pipeline

Turkmenistan recently hosted parties to a planned natural gas pipeline that would stretch eastward through territory in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and India. The project, dubbed TAPI, has financial backing from the Asian Development Bank and the support of the U.S. government. The project would provide much-needed relief to downstream consumers in Pakistan and India and serve as a bulwark against Iran's energy ambitions. But given U.S. Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta's stance on Pakistan, and lingering instability in Afghanistan, it's probable the pipeline will only serve as something of a paper tiger to the Iranian alternative.

Ashgabat hosted regional delegates for the signing of sales agreements for natural through the 1,043-mile TAPI pipeline. It's seen as a rival to a similar project long supported by the Iranian government. India and Pakistan both face looming energy crises given their shortage of natural gas and either one of the projects would serve to allay regional energy security concerns. Washington, however, views the Iranian pipeline option, once termed the Peace Pipeline, as beneficial to a regime that it suspects of pursuing a nuclear weapons program. Iranian officials have said they're ready to move forward, but have yet to get the assurances needed from their partners in Islamabad to formally proceed with the pipeline.

The U.S. State Department considers TAPI to be part of what's dubbed the New Silk Road, a project spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said would help integrate the Asian community and "create prosperity across the region." During April meetings with State Department officials, Pakistani Foreign Secretary Jalil Abbas Jilani said TAPI was a "very crucial" project that enjoys the support of the U.S. government.

TAPI, however, is a crucial project as it exists as a diplomatic tool used as an emblem of regional political victories against the Iranians. TAPI would have to cross through both Afghanistan, at war in some form or another since the 1970s, and Pakistan, a U.S. ally of epically fragile proportions. U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, during his visit to the region, said Washington was "reaching the limits" of its patience with Pakistan.

Iran has said it's willing to fund the Pakistan section of the natural gas pipeline, claiming the Iranian section as already up to the border. U.S. policy with Iran, however, is so ingrained that regional energy security, and this includes Europe, is side-lined in favour of ensuring Iran doesn't reach the point that it could develop a nuclear weapon. Tehran is unlikely to go that far, though considering the delicate geopolitical balance in the region, it's a valiant concern for the United States. That's not an apologetic observation so much as a statement of pragmatism. Afghanistan, meanwhile, is unlikely to enjoy anything closely resembling a conventional definition of stability any time soon and it's doubtful the al-Qaida problem in Pakistan is going away. It's likely that, for all intents and purposes and given the security woes in Afghanistan, the only reason that Washington and Islamabad are allies is because Washington can't be an ally to Iran. If it were, the energy situation might be different for Asia.

By. Daniel Graeber of Oilprice.com




Download The Free Oilprice App Today

Back to homepage

Trending Discussions


Leave a comment

Leave a comment




Oilprice - The No. 1 Source for Oil & Energy News