The Effects of The Russia-Ukraine Conflict on European Energy Security

Article

This study will evaluate the effect of the Russia-Ukraine war on the energy security of European countries. In the study, the energy relations of Russia and Europe before the Russia-Ukraine war and the dependence of European countries on Russian energy, the attitude of Europe during the war and the measures taken for energy security and energy supply will be evaluated and Russia's energy security policies will be emphasized....

Berra KILIÇ
Büşra ÇOBAN
Zeynep ÖZDEMİR
Doğa DOĞRU

Abstract


This study will evaluate the effect of the Russia-Ukraine war on the energy security of European countries. In the study, the energy relations of Russia and Europe before the Russia-Ukraine war and the dependence of European countries on Russian energy, the attitude of Europe during the war and the measures taken for energy security and energy supply will be evaluated and Russia's energy security policies will be emphasized.

Keywords: Russia, Ukraine, Energy Security, Oil, Natural Gas, Energy Policy, Europe.

Özet


Bu çalışma Rusya Ukrayna savaşının Avrupa ülkelerinin enerji güvenliğine etkisini değerlendirecektir. Çalışmada Rusya-Ukrayna savaşı öncesinde Rusya ve Avrupa’nın enerji ilişkisi ve Avrupa ülkelerinin Rus enerjisine olan bağımlılığı, savaş sırasında Avrupa’nın sergilediği tavır ve enerji güvenliğine ve enerji tedariki için aldığı önlemler ana hatları ile değerlendirilecek ve Rusya’nın enerji güvenliği politikaları üzerinde durulacaktır.
Anahtar Kelimeler: Rusya, Ukrayna, Enerji Güvenliği, Petrol, Doğal Gaz, Enerji Politikası, Avrupa.

Introduction


Ukraine and Russia have the same origin, language, and culture; It appears as two different nations from the Slavic race. The intertwined geography of these two countries; triggered many local, national, and regional crises and tensions. This crisis, which deepened with the occupation of Crimea, finally emerges as a hot war that started on February 24, 2022.

Crimean Khanate in history, took steps to realize the 'Great Russian Nation' projects, including the White Russians and the Ukrainians. In the face of these developments, the elites in Ukraine made progress towards “establishing the Ukrainian nation independent of Russia, with its history, language and culture“. During World War II, the USSR occupied Western Ukraine and all Ukrainians were united under the USSR roof. Although Ukraine's struggle for independence continued throughout the war, Ukraine was again occupied by the Soviets at the end of the war. After the dissolution of the Soviet Union, in 1997, a Friendship and Cooperation Agreement was signed between Russia and Ukraine, thus the independence of Ukraine became legally clear.

On March 18, 2014, Russia annexed Crimea. By using the Russian minority in Crimea, Russia triggered a crisis between Ukraine and Russia. This action not only had an impact between Ukraine and Russia but also caused the biggest and most serious crisis between Russia and the West in the post-Cold War era. After the occupation of Crimea, the Autonomous Republic of Crimea held a referendum on the future of its regions on 16 March 2014. According to the result of this referendum, the Russian Federation declared that Crimea is part of its country. This situation triggered the Russian population in the Donetsk and Lugansk regions on the Ukrainian border, so these regions also declared their independence from Ukraine. (Ilsa,2022).

The entry of Russian armies into Ukraine on February 24, 2022 changed both regional and global balances. While the Russian forces were trying to advance by targeting the Ukrainian defense lines with artillery fire, the Kremlin looted the economic building blocks of the Ukrainian nation, namely its natural resources. A significant amount of other valuable energy and mining fields, which are used in almost every field from aircraft parts to smartphones, as well as a large part of the coal deposits are in the hands of the Russians. According to SecDev and Ukrainian mining and steel industry executives, Russia seized 41 coal fields, 27 natural gas fields, 14 propane fields, nine oil fields, 6 iron ore deposits, 2 titanium ore fields, 2 zirconium ore fields, and a strontium field in this process. Russia also captured a lithium field, a uranium field, a gold deposit, and an important limestone quarry. Ukraine’s largest coal reserves now are under Russia’s controls. SecDev stated that the estimated commercial value of approximately 30 billion tons of hard coal here is 11.9 trillion dollars. (Şarkul Avsat,2022)

Russia is the EU’s supplier of natural gas. It inevitably makes Europe dependent on Russia. Russia's efforts to use energy as a foreign policy tool to increase efficiency are considered to pose a threat to security. Europe's energy imports, as in the case of Ukraine's conflict with Russia or the continuation of its excessive dependence on Russia may prevent the European Union from becoming an international power. Two dates are important for us in this regard. First, the USSR collapsed in 1991. After the collapse of the USSR Russia's efforts to maintain its former power and the cyclical situation of the region is important. With the end of the Cold War, the Russian Federation increased its efficiency. He started using his energy as a weapon against the Western world. The second was the date when the Kyoto Protocol was in 1997. Due to the increasing environmental problems in recent years, in addition to the geopolitical struggle, the environmental factor is also important in energy relations. With the Kyoto Protocol, hydrocarbon energy resources and energy resources that do not harm the environment should be used. With the commitments made by the EU countries with the signing of the Kyoto Protocol, the EU member states started to make changes in the energy resources they use in favor of the environment. Although Europe is one of the most intense regions in the world in energy consumption, and production, it is one of the least resource-intensive regions.

The high dependence of European countries on natural gas and the fact that European countries are naturally close to cooperation and long-term agreements with gas exporting countries. Continuing gas imports from Europe, Norway, North Africa, and Russia is doing. By 2030, the EU's natural gas export dependency is estimated to increase to 74% (Eurogas, t.y.)‘Russia's proven natural gas reserves as of 2006 are 47 trillion m³ (IEA – International Energy Agency, t.y.)With this amount, the world's total reserves, Russia, which has 27.2%, is the country with the most natural gas reserves in the world. It is not only about twice the size of its closest competitor, Iran.’ (Akdo, t.y.)(Worldwide Look at Reserves and Production,www.eia.doe.gov).

Europe provides a significant part of its natural gas needs from Russia. The natural gas crisis was important for Europe in terms of showing the future crises with Russia. No other energy producing country will be a serious alternative to Russia for Europe. Europe, despite the diversification of resources and countries, energy demand is increasing in the following years. ‘Countries cannot reduce Russia's 42% share much. Because 95% of natural gas trade made in the world is through pipelines’. (Akdo, t.y.)on the other hand, Russia mostly exports its natural gas to neighboring countries. There aren't enough big countries to buy the natural gas that Russia exports to Europe. If Russia cuts off the natural gas it sends to Europe this will affect the Russian economy at least as much as Europe.

Measures to deal with energy crisis

The European Union started to impose embargoes against Russia after the military operation of Russia against Ukraine. In the face of this situation, Russia completely shut down gas valves, Russia used natural gas resources as an economic weapon, and put European countries in an energy and food crisis. European countries started to find new solutions to the energy crisis. ‘’The United States (USA) and the European Union have announced a series of economic sanctions against Russia and their plans to discourage this country from fossil fuels’’ ( Euronews , 2022).


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This study will evaluate the effect of the Russia-Ukraine war on the energy security of European countries. In the study, the energy relations of Russia and Europe before the Russia-Ukraine war and the dependence of European countries on Russian energy, the attitude of Europe during the war and the ...;

TASAM 2004-2021 Activity Report is published with an annual review by Turkish Asian Center for Strategic Studies, which has become an international “Turkish Brand”.;

TASAM 2004-2021 Activity Report is published with an annual review by Turkish Asian Center for Strategic Studies, which has become an international “Turkish Brand”.;