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Oil, Natural Gas and Geopolitical Conflict in the Current Economic Climate

In recent years, uncertainties have arisen in the global energy market that could threaten global financial markets and multinational institutions. This panel discussion focuses on the changing geopolitical landscape and potential fallout amid increased concerns that suppliers could use oil as a lever to achieve their political goals. In particular, Russia's position as a major energy supplier has come under great scrutiny. Russia and the Caspian states play a critical role as alternative supply sources to the Middle East, but it is unclear whether Russia will seek to coordinate its policies with Middle Eastern producers, and how those alliances would impact the ability of major consuming countries to diversify supply alternatives. While Russia is engaged in extensive trading with Western Europe, recent events make it reasonable to question whether Russia might aggressively challenge the existing global energy trading system under certain conditions -- a decision that would have great significance for its foreign policy as well as its relationships with major energy consuming countries, including Japan and the United States.


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Event Agenda and Presentations


"Rising Powers, Shrinking Planet: The New Geopolitics of Energy"
Michael Klare, Ph.D., Director, Five College Program of Peace and World Security Studies

"Iran, Saudi Arabia, Russia and the United States: Iran's Nuclear Aspirations and the Current Geopolitics of Oil -- Conflict or Diplomacy"
Amy Myers Jaffe, Wallace S. Wilson Fellow in Energy Studies, Baker Institute

PDF icon "Scenarios for Russian Natural Gas Exports: The Role of Domestic Investment, the Caspian, and LNG"
Kenneth B. Medlock III, Ph.D., James A. Baker, III, and Susan G. Baker Fellow in Energy and Resource Economics, Baker Institute

Question and Answer Session

Speaker Amy Jaffe

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Wed, April 29, 2009
3 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.
(GMT-0500) America/Chicago


Rice University's Baker Institute