The Wall Street Journal (USA): why Putin likes us “green”?

The Democrats acted with sharp statements in the address of Russia from the time when Donald trump was victorious in the presidential elections. But when it comes about to challenge Moscow, and other progressive priorities always seem to take precedence.

Last week the Danish government suddenly issued a permit for the completion of the laying of “Nord stream — 2” — duct length in 1 thousand 200 kilometers, according to which the Siberian natural gas will be supplied through the Baltic sea to Germany. This decision refutes the stereotype that Europeans are obsessed with regulation and control of “green”. Although the United States wants Europe to sell more of its gas, the Russian, the fuel is cheaper. And much of the blame for this lies on the left, who are the regulatory and legal war against American mining companies.

The United States and many European countries oppose the construction of the “Nord stream — 2”, however, Berlin put their economic interests above the collective security. This in turn helps Russian President Vladimir Putin, whose domestic standing has been shaken because of the pandemic, covid-19 and falling oil prices. In addition, it gives Putin more opportunities to exert influence on European democracy. According to the official data of the European Union in 2019, 38 percent of natural gas imports Europe got from Russia. The bandwidth of this new thread is 55 billion cubic meters per year, which will allow in future to increase the volume of supply in two times.

Some European countries are willing to pay a higher price, not to support Putin. In 2019, the share of Russia in Polish imports of gas fell to 60 percent, while three years ago it was 89 percent. If Poland will gradually increase the volume of import of liquefied natural gas from Qatar and the United States and abandon the use of Russian pipelines, it will be able to completely abandon Russian gas in just a few years.

The best way to attract more countries to their side is to make the American gas more competitive, and this idea is popular with politicians. Joe Biden (Joe Biden), who has long opposed fossil fuels, but who really wants to win in Pennsylvania, said last week that “the extraction method of hydraulic fracturing will not be threatened”. Biden has sent mixed signals during the democratic primaries, so the question is, will he resist the left, which can not stop the implementation of oil and gas projects traditional political methods. But their tactics of regulation and lawsuits against companies that extract fossil fuels, has proven to be more effective.

After several years of resistance from the administration of Barack Obama, the President of trump finally approved construction of the Keystone XL pipeline. However, environmentalists have challenged in court received in 2017 the authorization for the Engineering corps of the armed forces of the United States. In April, a Federal judge Brian Morris (Brian Morris) issued a national decree aimed against Keystone XL, as the pipeline allegedly threatened endangered species of animals. This uncertainty may also apply to other pipelines.

In July, Federal judge James Boasberg (James Boasberg) required to close the oil pipeline, Dakota Access, which worked for only three years, to verify previously granted authorities permission to meet standards of the legislation in the sphere of nature protection. Recently, the company’s Duke Energy and Dominion Energy refused to implement the project on construction of the pipeline, Atlantic Coast Pipeline, which stretches almost 1,000 kilometres, citing the constant lawsuits from environmentalists. This project will not be the last. Undoubtedly, Putin is very happy.