Foreign Policy Blogs

Energy & Environment

In Fukushima’s shadow, Japan sees a nuclear revival

In Fukushima’s shadow, Japan sees a nuclear revival

Following the release of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s new energy plan, nuclear reactors are set to restart across the island nation three years after the Fukushima disaster, leaving many fearing another radioactive plume. Citing economic and environmental concerns, Abe unveiled his government’s 20-year Basic Energy Plan on February 25, which aims to restart at […]

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Can Mozambique be the Next LNG Hotbed?

Can Mozambique be the Next LNG Hotbed?

Like many other African countries, Mozambique has enormous potential, but there are many gaps to fill. Led by its natural resources, the economy has been booming with real GDP growth reaching 7.4 percent in 2012, seven percent in 2013 and is predicted to reach 8.5 percent between 2014–16, according to the World Bank. London based […]

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How Mexico’s reforms open new doors for reaching clean energy and climate goals

How Mexico’s reforms open new doors for reaching clean energy and climate goals

Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto’s major policy reform proposals, on everything from new taxes on soda pop to amending the 70-year constitutional prohibition on foreign investment in Mexico’s petroleum sector, have swept through that nation’s congress with breathtaking speed.

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Oil companies push ahead with plans in Russia and Canada while sidelined in the U.S.

Oil companies push ahead with plans in Russia and Canada while sidelined in the U.S.

Earlier this month, the Wall Street Journal reported that more crude oil is being sent by sea and inland waterways as a supplement to railways and pipelines. Since 2010, the amount of oil shipped on barges from the Midwest down the Mississippi River to the Gulf of Mexico has increased 13 times. Much of this […]

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Climate Change: Fragile States Spillage

Climate Change:  Fragile States Spillage

  “The physical features of the Somali country are much the same wherever the traveler may land. Bereft of all vegetation but a few scattered thorn- bushes bristling like hedgehogs, it is destitute of wealth and forbidding in aspect. The fine sand is driven by rainless storms into innumerable drifts. All the world seems ablaze; […]

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Gasoline prices and energy security at stake in U.S. oil export debate

Gasoline prices and energy security at stake in U.S. oil export debate

One of the year’s most urgent policy questions—whether or not the U.S. should export oil–is finally garnering attention in Washington as both sides of the U.S. oil export debate make their case. The United States began safeguarding domestically produced oil after the 1973 Arab oil embargo, which caused supply disruptions and price spikes in the […]

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Europe Debates its Future Climate Targets

Europe Debates its Future Climate Targets

The countries of the European Union tend to be viewed as the main advocates at the national level for developing a more comprehensive and binding global plan to tackle climate change. As the EU pushes forward, other nations have been stuck in neutral or have been retrenching. With the European economy continuously struggling to pick […]

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To close its energy gap, Africa should think clean

To close its energy gap, Africa should think clean

For a continent determined to close its energy gap, Africa is poised to turn away from fossil fuel production and potentially bring clean energy to nearly 600 million people lacking electricity. Vaccines unable to be stored without refrigeration, students closing their books after dark, and smoke-filled homes thanks to wood or coal burning devices are […]

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Untapped potential waits in Mexican oil fields

Untapped potential waits in Mexican oil fields

When Mexico passed legislation last month lifting a 75-year ban on foreign energy investors, oil companies from around the world awoke to the untapped potential of a new market now up for grabs. President Enrique Peña Nieto kicked off his six-year term just over a year ago, promising economic improvement and an aggressive reform agenda. […]

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Panama Canal expansion dispute could alter U.S. export plans

Panama Canal expansion dispute could alter U.S. export plans

Seven years after Panama voted to widen its world-renowned canal, a debate over who should have to pay an additional $1.5 billion in construction costs threatens to halt its completion. The U.S., anxious to begin sending liquefied natural gas tankers through the canal, is keeping a close watch on the situation as a potential setback […]

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Filling Ethiopia’s Power Void

Filling Ethiopia’s Power Void

East Africa is on the verge of personifying an energy transformation. New advances in natural gas, wind, geothermal, solar power and potentially oil are emerging to feed the hungry markets, while large hydro will continue to expand as well. Ethiopia, a country of 92 million and 7+ percent economic growth, has been a driver in […]

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Hawaii’s GMO ban follows in Europe’s footsteps

Hawaii’s GMO ban follows in Europe’s footsteps

Last December, Hawaii’s Big Island passed a bill prohibiting biotech companies from operating on the island and restricting farmers from growing new genetically modified crops. The island does not currently have any operating biotech companies, but approximately three-quarters of the 30 million pounds of papayas harvested there are genetically modified according to The New York Times. […]

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Uniting Food Security and Economic Growth in Africa

Uniting Food Security and Economic Growth in Africa

With the passing of another year comes the need to look ahead at the issues that will increasingly define the world we live in. Every year since 1945 the international community marks World Food Day, serving as a reminder of the importance of food security in a world where 1 in 8 go hungry. With […]

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Climate Change Hijacks National Security

Climate Change Hijacks National Security

Why the Slow Moving Emergency is Resetting the U.S. National Security Conversation Has climate destabilization already hijacked the national security conversation? Well, not yet – but it should and it will.  To help make my point for dramatic change in national security thought, let’s recall the old frog in boiling water ancedote. If you put […]

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What is Global Warming Really Tells Us

What is Global Warming Really Tells Us

Bhola is a small island district in the south of Bangladesh situated softly on the edge of Bay of Bengal and home to nearly two million people. Few years ago on Al Jazeera, a documentary on climate change was aired which was titled, “Bhola: Ground Zero of Climate Change.” The basic message was that the […]

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