This book is a result from the Advanced Research Workshop “Energy Security in the Wider Black Sea Area – National and Allied Approaches”, conducted in the frame of the NATO Science For Peace and Security (SPS) Programme and with the support of the Emerging Security Challenges (ESC) Division.
It aims to provide policy recommendations to contribute to the formulation of a strategic vision for the development of the Black Sea region and of NATO in the field of the energy security.
The workshop was focused on energy security from the perspective that it will remain a global challenge in the long run. Hence, the ARW discussed related topics, such as energy security policies, transnational energy projects, common (EU) strategies for energy security, which were blended with cross- cutting issues, such as critical infrastructure protection, public- private partnership, etc. The ARW thus sought to improve dialogue between NATO member states and NATO partners in an area of increasing importance for the Alliance.
One other contribution of the ARW is broadening of the international perspective in the field of the energy security. The participants in the Workshop came from international organisations, national institutions, international organisations, universities, industry and NGOs.
Thus, a balanced mix of experts was in place that ensured that the issues will not be discussed one- sided. In addition to that, a balance was sought in terms of geographical representation so that producers, suppliers and transit countries and NATO and Partner countries were present to have the necessary precondition for value adding dialogue in place.
The workshop has its role for improving international and national inter-agency cooperation.
This book collected the scientific reports of the participants from 12 countries and the main issues that were discussed during the Workshop included:
Big energy security picture
Regarding the general situation with respect to security and energy, Poptchev stressed that globalization, technology and the dynamics of energy trade brought diversification to the fore for both consumers and suppliers. He argued that diversification could turn into an economic or a geopolitical challenge, in particular in the gas sector.
Vashakmadze further stressed that the EU needs diversification of supplies and routes and elaborated on supplier side issues (Caspian gas abundance) and consumer side solutions (EU's Southern Corridor initiative).
For his part, Osheyko proposed a set of measures to improve the environment in which large- scale projects are implemented, including to create a unified information field on the current and prospective projects in the Black Sea region, including those under the Russia-EU format in order to provide the public with up-to-date and objective information about the situation in the Black Sea region.
The Role of EU-Russia Dialogue
According to Poptchev, that is currently characterized by the lack of strategic understanding on energy; bickering over the Third Liberalisation Package; and failure of EU to devise an effective policy on Russian energy. Now, it is important that the EU turned a new page based on pragmatism and priority negotiation of the energy aspects of New EU-Russia Agreement.
Vashakmadze stressed that if European gas buyers, European governments, the European Commission and international organisations do not succeed in coordinating their efforts in securing the development of the Southern Corridor at a scale which creates a win-win situation for the supplier countries and the EU, the gas market in the EU might tend to shrink.
Opposite scenario can be anticipated if Southern Corridor is functional and effective in terms of capacity and reliability. He noted the strategic significance of concurrent developments - White Stream in parallel with pipeline(s) via Turkey. Further on, Vashakmadze provided arguments that the EU need two entry points for gas supply, in contrast to Poptchev's view that only one project will most likely be selected.
Protection of Critical Infrastructure
The participants agreed that the scope of critical infrastructure that needs to be protected with respect to energy, includes: Oil/gas fields, Ports, Power plants; Pipeline transport; Maritime transport (oil tankers, LNG carriers). In terms of national approaches, Lenes presented the Romanian experience, in particular the establishment of the Romanian Association for the Protection of Critical Infrastructures and Related Services – ARPC, with the aim to bring together specialists from different fields, so as to contribute to the understanding and harmonization of specific norms and operating procedures for the protection of critical infrastructures and related services, in Romania, as well as at regional, European and international levels. She also stressed Romanian experience in serious gaming and infranomics. A governmental perspective to the issue of CIP was presented by the Bulgarian Ministry of Economy and Energy, including implementation of EU directives and further joint action plans. Vanek elaborated more on the technical side of CIP, namely what technologies could be applied to increase level of security.
The Role of NATO
What NATO could do in such an environment was among the key issues discussed. Proposed solutions concerned political measures, such as: awareness raising and information sharing in EAPC formats geared towards establishing strategic cross points between energy security concerns and vulnerabilities in the economic and overall security of nations and regions; discuss confidence-building and stabilization frameworks that could be provided for the duration of radical energy sector reforms. Critical Energy Infrastructure Protection (CEIP) should be seen as a component of a broader NATO policy on energy security as an emerging challenge: intelligence gathering and information sharing; pre-positioning of heavy moving and lifting equipment close to maritime choke points; coordination of national and regional CEIP measures – the WBS area is ideal for international frameworks in CEIP.
Alternative Ways to Energy Security
Presenters like Winkler emphasized the role of the increase of domestic renewable energy production (wind, solar, bioenergy) for improving the overall energy security situation. He stressed that this, however, requires substantial investments, which in the current economic situation may not be in place.
These exchange of views and ideas was possible as a result of the efforts of the NATO-country Co-director of the workshop VADM (Ret) Emil Lyutskanov, BuN, Senior Fellow of the Centre for Black Sea Security Studies and the Partner-country / Mediterranean Dialogue-country Co-Director Leila Alieva, President of the Center for National and International Studies. They maintained a constant direct communication with the governments and partners from the academia and the NGO sector. They selected the papers, collected in this book, which were edited by Assoc. Prof. Mila Serafimova. The compliers of the book hope it will inspire further discussions in the field of the energy security and will clear up the national and Allied approaches to the topic.
Emil Lyutskanov, VADM (Ret), BuN
Senior Fellow of the Centre for Black Sea Security Studies, Sofia, Bulgaria
President of the Center for National and International Studies, Baku, Republic of Azerbaijan
Mila Serafimova, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, National Defence Academy Leadership Department, Sofia, Bulgaria