This morning, I had an email from a correspondent in the Emirates outlining a perspective on the great tragedy in the loss of the entire public leadership echelon of Poland in the crash of a Russian airliner. It's a perspective. I read it several times to see if it qualifies as conspiracy theory (God forbid!) but I don't think it is. I think it is a perspective on an issue that will be of increasing importance in the global oil calculation. As he said in his introduction ... Walk with us ...
2005 Russia proposes Nordstream, a gas line directly into the EU markets.
"The new gas pipeline is very important in terms of meeting the increasing natural gas demand in the European gas market. Gas imports to the EU countries are anticipated to grow in the nearest decade by nearly 200 bcm, or more than 50 per cent. Due to a direct connection between the world’s largest gas reserves located in Russia and the European gas transmission system, Nord Stream will be able to satisfy circa 25 per cent of the foregoing extra demand for imported gas.
There are no transit countries on Nord Stream’s route, which enables to reduce Russian gas transmission costs and exclude any possible political risks. Nord Stream will provide the most reliable gas deliveries to customers in Western Europe."
Because of the geographical bypass and strong potential to gouge prices, Poland is the staunchest opposition to the Nordstream pipeline from the beginning.
From the NY TIMES, 2005 ...
" Moving to bolster its energy security, Poland is set to become the first East European country to try to reduce its dependence on Russian natural gas imports by increasing its sources, according to government officials involved in Poland’s energy sector.
The reason why Poland wants to diversify its gas imports is not just because of the rising prices. Polish officials said the country’s newly elected conservative government believes that President Vladimir Putin of Russia is using his country’s vast energy reserves to exert influence in the region. Gazprom, for example, has spent the past few years buying gas distribution companies and terminals throughout Eastern Europe and the Baltic states to control prices and gain direct access to the energy markets of countries that joined the European Union in 2004."
The Polish in union with other regional countries, came close to shutting it down in 2008
"FRANKFURT (Thomson Financial) – The financing of the 5 bln eur Nord Stream project is on the brink of collapsing, as the European Investment Bank (EIB) is unlikely to have a political majority to finance the Baltic Sea gas pipeline, Die Welt reported.
The newspaper quoted Polish economy minister Waldemar Pawlak saying that a public financing is unthinkable as besides Poland, ’several countries’ oppose it.
EIB planned to finance some 50 pct of the pipeline’s costs with a low-interest loan, but needs a political agreement between the European Union’s 27 member states on the financing."
There is a lot of money on the table, and [our correspondent] understands that cash rules everything, and so the Nordstream pipeline continues to clear the hurdles that are always around projects like this. Then on the 2nd of March, 2010:
"In a Securities and Exchange disclosure from last Thursday Chevron confirmed that it won new rights to explore Poland for potential shale gas, although the size of the acreage was not divulged. Noted in the annual report, Chevron has acquired rights to explore for natural gas in the Grabowiec concession, located in the southeastern part of Poland.
The confirmation follows Chevron’s announcement in December that the company was awarded three five-year exploration licenses for the Zwierzyniec, Kransnik and Frampol concessions, also located in Poland, to explore for unconventional gas resources, Dow Jones reported.
In December 2009, the Environment Ministry of Poland granted Chevron permission to carry out seismic studies and exploratory drilling up to 3,500 meters underground, as well as to develop shale gas resources.
Keep in mind that Chevron isn’t alone in Poland. Exxon, Conoco, and Marathon are there as well investigating shale’s potential. Which means that Polish shale is likely chock full of gas.
"This is getting too big to ignore. One company takes a gamble, two might be foolish, three might simultaneously jump on a band wagon and drive off a cliff. But there is a critical mass of companies in Poland. Something is going on, and it’s unlikely that many companies will be wrong all at the same time."
The consequence of these discoveries are devastating to the Russian monopoly on gas delivery, especially considering the economies of scale required to realize the desired profits on the nordstream project. Construction starts on April 9th 2010.
"PORTOVAYA BAY, Russia, April 9 (UPI) — Construction of the controversial Nord Stream pipeline linking Russia and Germany under the Baltic Sea has officially started. (Note: See the video on You Tube at this URL: Nord Stream Pipeline .)
Portovaya Bay in Russia has surely never seen so many VIPs. Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, Dutch Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende, the European Union’s Energy Commissioner Guenther Oettinger and former German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder all traveled to this sea port near the Finnish border to attend Friday’s ceremony launching the construction of Nord Stream.
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev at the ceremony called Nord Stream, which will cost $10 billion, a "contribution to Europe’s energy security."
Moscow has long lobbied for the project. The pipeline was designed to bypass transit countries in Eastern and Central Europe."
THE NEXT DAY, THE DAY AFTER CONSTRUCTION BEGINS ON THE NORDSTREAM PIPELINE, THE NEXT DAY — A PLANE CARRYING THE UPPER ECHELON OF THE POLISH GOVERNMENT GOES DOWN, KILLING ALL ON BOARD.
CONCLUSION: This is a great loss for the people of Poland. The possibility of foul play is perhaps clouded by the poor history of the aircraft, but the grasping for carbon fuels has led to such deeds in the past. So there is history there as well.