Foreign Policy Blogs

Energy & Environment

France Extends a New Lifeline to Its Solar Industry

France Extends a New Lifeline to Its Solar Industry

  As France’s solar industry has not flourishing as planned, French President Francois Hollande and his administration recently extended a new lifeline to France’s struggling solar energy industry. France doubled the nation’s solar production capacity target for 2013 to 1 gigawatt (GW)—roughly equivalent to 1 nuclear reactor—from the previous 500 megawatt  (MW) target. Aside from increasing renewable […]

read more

Iran Admits Sanctions Hurt Revenue

Iran Admits Sanctions Hurt Revenue

Iran’s revenue from oil exports is off by 40% thanks to the sanctions imposed by the U.S. and EU over the Iranian nuclear program.  Oil Minister Rostam Qasemi told the budget commission of the Iranian parliament, “There has been a 40 percent decrease in oil sales and a 45 percent decrease in repatriating oil money.” […]

read more

A More Inclusive Global Energy Paradigm

A More Inclusive Global Energy Paradigm

As part of the European Union’s support for the U.N.’s Sustainable Energy for All initiative, E.U. Development Commissioner Andris Piebalgs announced with visiting Djibouti Prime Minister Dileita Mohamed Dileita that the E.U. would provide funding for a combined renewable energy and water desalinization plant. The plant, to be built near Djibouti City, is to provide water […]

read more

THE LAND OF THE RISING “NUCLEAR” SUN – AGAIN!

THE LAND OF THE RISING “NUCLEAR” SUN – AGAIN!

  The experiment is over. Japanese voters went to the polls just yesterday on December 16 to elect a new parliament and overwhelmingly voted incumbent Japanese Prime Minister Noda from the ruling Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) out of office. Yoshihiko Noda, a former finance minister who wanted to curb Japan’s immense public debt, had only become Japan’s […]

read more

Not The Savior Once Hoped

Not The Savior Once Hoped

Not long ago jatropha curcas, a flowering plant in the jatropha family, was believed to be an efficient source for biofuels. The plant was viewed so advantageously due to its properties. Tests showed it could grow productively in some of the harshest conditions; such as on marginal land without fertilizer and during drought conditions. Not […]

read more

Will Iskandar Malaysia prove to be an eco-city model?

Will Iskandar Malaysia prove to be an eco-city model?

As COP 18 in Doha seems to have failed (as of writing) to reach a consensus on how to further climate change action for the future, Malaysia proves to be one developing country with a plan for internal action. The country has set ambitious emission reduction targets: by 2020 it has committed to cut it […]

read more

The Nexus between the Keystone XL Pipeline and Bending the CO2 Emissions Curve Downwards in the Long Term

The Nexus between the Keystone XL Pipeline and Bending the CO2 Emissions Curve Downwards in the Long Term

I spent the last week on a tour of the Canadian oil sands in Alberta talking to oil sands industry representatives, Government of Alberta officials – the regulator – and environmental think tanks. I am now back in New York with interesting insights, a far better understanding of “everything oil sands” and many thoughts I would […]

read more

General Wesley Clark on Energy and National Security 

General Wesley Clark on Energy and National Security 

After a panel discussion at New York University shortly before November’s election, General Wesley Clark (ret.) was kind enough to answer some questions regarding the national security dimension of America’s energy situation. This piece originally appeared in the Kensington Review. Q: What security threats bother you most when it comes to energy issues? General Clark: Over four decades, […]

read more

Round 18: Climate Talks Start in Doha

Round 18: Climate Talks Start in Doha

The United Nations climate change negotiations, or the long form: the 18th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the 8th session of the Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties (CMP) to the Kyoto Protocol, got underway today […]

read more

U.S. to Overtake Saudi Arabia in Oil Production by 2020 — Not So Fast…

U.S. to Overtake Saudi Arabia in Oil Production by 2020 — Not So Fast…

    In a recent report by the Paris-based IEA, it was forecasted that the United States would become the largest global oil producer, thereby overtaking Saudi Arabia, by around 2020. Not so fast! As Jen Alic of Oilprice.com rightly points out: “We cannot compare total combined liquid hydrocarbons produced by the U.S. with Saudi Arabia’s strictly crude […]

read more

Britain Announces Energy Efficiency Strategy

Britain Announces Energy Efficiency Strategy

In the field of energy, conservation is about the least sexy topic out there. However, it is also the one area that can affect the picture immediately, and for that reason, we ought to be paying greater attention to it. For its part, the British government has just released its first Energy Efficiency Strategy. I […]

read more

President Obama Re-elected and Keystone XL Pipeline Revisited

President Obama Re-elected and Keystone XL Pipeline Revisited

    The Foreign Policy Association has recently released results of its 2012 National Opinion Survey with some interesting insights regarding the geopolitics of energy. Among other things, the survey finds that a total of 57 percent of the balloters believe that constructing the Keystone XL pipeline is in the U.S. national interest. This seems to […]

read more

Going green in a traditionally unlikely region

Going green in a traditionally unlikely region

  Growing global demand for energy continues to strain resource availability, which has spurred increased exploration for unconventional oil and gas, as well as accelerated exploitation of traditional fossil fuels. Renewable energy has increased exponentially worldwide over the past decade to combat these facts. The Middle East and North Africa (MENA), and especially the Gulf […]

read more

Climate Change and the Economy? Not in this Presidential Debate

Climate Change and the Economy? Not in this Presidential Debate

While climate change is an established reality in much of the world, the United States continues to lag behind in recognizing the truth, despite recent gains. The U.S. is the second largest emitter of greenhouse gases, behind China, but it does not have an official dedicated policy to confront that fact. One need not look […]

read more

Baghdad’s Oil Payment Deal with Kurds Helps Boost Exports

Baghdad’s Oil Payment Deal with Kurds Helps Boost Exports

Iraq’s oil minister Abdul Kareem Luaiby anticipates his country’s exports for September to exceed 2.6 million barrels a day, a figure not reached in the last 20 or so years. Part of this increase stems from a deal cut between the central government and the Kurdish autonomous region. The Kurds had stopped exporting oil back […]

read more

americasdiplomats_socialmediaasset