Russian Coal: Europe's New Energy Challenge
This paper looks at the complex relationship between natural gas and coal within Russia's energy and power sector and how this relationship influences energy security and climate change. Europe receives large quantities of its natural gas from Russia. It has been traditionally accepted by Russian leaders that for Russia to satisfy downstream European demand for natural gas, it must turn to other domestic fuels. As Russia has large coal reserves, it is turning more and more to this source of power to satisfy domestic demands. This has implications on Russia's greenhouse gas emissions, however. As Russia is already the world's third largest emitter, this could have dangerous implications for the world's climate. The paper recommends that the easiest way for Russia to shift toward a low-carbon economy is to increase energy efficiency. Rosner argues that the Russian economy is both energy-intensive and highly inefficient. This presents an opportunity for the United States and the European Union to increase their efforts to help Russia increase energy efficiency, through technology transfer and other cooperative approaches.