"A major calamitiy in Russia's energy region will pit Moscow against the EU. Europe will prophetically turn to Cyprus & Israel for energy"
Russia sets new gas pumping record to cover European demand Jan 27, 2012 Moscow - Russia has set a new record on volumes of fuel drawn from underground reservoirs in the face of increasing winter demand by domestic and particularly European customers, Russian government energy data made public on Friday showed. Draws on underground natural gas reserves inside Russia totalled 565 billion cubic metres on Wednesday - topping a previous 553 billion cubic metres single day record set in January 2011, Russian government energy monitoring agency TsDU TEK said. A statement by the energy giant Gazprom, Russia's state-owned natural gas monopoly, said the company's average daily production of gas was increasing as well and that the firm expected to meet all demand throughout the winter peak season. Germany and other central European nations will likely be the top consumers of Gazprom gas in coming weeks as increasingly cold weather moves into the region, a report by the Interfax news agency said. Temperatures in Russia and in Gazprom's important export market Ukraine dropped below historical averages, which could increase natural gas consumption there as well, local news reports said. Approximately one-quarter of all natural gas consumed by EU nations is produced in Russia. Delivery stoppages of Russian gas travelling to Europe in 2006 and 2009 - both times because of gas pricing disputes with Ukraine - spiked prices across the region.
The Cold (War) Reality of European Gas January 23, 2012
Saber rattling by Moscow along the western front of the Soviet Union highlights the fact that natural gas diplomacy in Europe has more to do with geopolitics than energy resources.
The last time Russian natural gas monopoly Gazprom decided to close the spigot on the natural gas transit network through Ukraine in winter 2009, Europeans shivered for weeks.
It's not unreasonable to say the Cold War is alive and well and running through a natural gas pipeline somewhere in Eastern Europe. Ukraine hosts 80 percent of all of the Russian gas bound for Europe, which is engaged in a tug-of-war with Moscow in a line stretching from Warsaw to Baku on Turkey's western coast.
Oh, and South Stream, Russia's answer to Nabucco? Construction on that doesn't start until December
September 14, 2009
Russian officials admit aging Soviet-era infrastructure -- some dating back to the time of dictator Josef Stalin -- will need trillions of dollars in investment to upgrade.
Russia's economy is resource driven.
Mid-Point - March 21st 2013God Blessgail