Will Western Sanctions Damage Russia’s Global Nuclear Energy Business?

By John C. K. Daly

As the West prepares economic sanctions against Russia for its actions in Ukraine, the head of the government-owned State Atomic Energy Corporation (Rosatom) nuclear complex, Sergei Kirienko, said that Russia’s nuclear industry contracts with other countries could be affected, observing, “Considering an array of comments about possible restrictions on economic cooperation, we understand that some of our [international] contracts could fall under political curbs” (RIA Novosti, March 27). Kirienko added that Rosatom is bidding on international tenders for constructing nuclear power plants (NPP) in an environment of fierce political competition from the United States, with the State Department lobbying for Westinghouse to receive contracts.

Cyprus: The New Key to European Energy Security?

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By Robbie Gramer

The European Union’s dithering response to Russia’s invasion of Crimea can be blamed in large part on Europe’s overdependence on Russian energy imports. In response, EU leaders met on March 21 to discuss diversifying its energy sources, including seeking natural gas supplies from the United States to supplant Russia’s grip over European energy markets. Yet Europe will also need to search its own backyard for alternate supplies given the significant time and investment it would take to establish a supply route from the United States capable of usurping Russia’s supply.