Gazprom builds fifth column
In 2013, either common sense prevails and Ukraine starts extracting shale gas or Gazprom wins with all its ensuing consequences, an article by Andriy Starostyn in the last KW issue suggests.
The author reminds that Poland, Ukraine and Sweden, which all heavily depend on the import of energy, will become the first European countries to sum up the results of the drilling of non-traditional natural gas by the end of the year.
The share of Russian state-run monopolies or offshore companies backed by Russian capital in both of these countries is reaching a critical point above which there will be either unpredictable surge in prices or a gas blockade. Poland is in an even more dangerous situation as it does not generate its own nuclear energy.
Some optimists may postulate that the European parliament, which on November 21 overwhelmingly turned down an attempt at a vote of no-confidence in shale gas extraction technologies, played into the hands of pioneers in the new gas extraction market. In fact, European legislators were most likely not guided by the interests of the newest EU members Sweden and Poland or the interests of Ukraine, which is not an EU member.
Next year we will see a boom in the creation of all kinds of non-government think-tanks and pseudo-scientific organizations that will cry havoc about the dangers of the extraction of shale gas. This boom will give a serious boost to PR industry, though by Russian standards the whole will cost peanuts - a mere US $5-6 mn, Starostin warns.
It looks like Russia’s Gazprom would really not mind to back a couple of parties that have political influence at the regional level that will devise their policy based on the rumors about the detriments of shale gas In this case, the price to pay is not as exorbitant. In the opinion of experts surveyed by “k:”, one party will not cost an affordable US $15 mn.
Does anyone in the nation’s establishment circles do realizes this?