One thing we have learnt this week – Libya again

A few months ago I wrote a blog post about Libya.  I wish I did not have to write a follow up.  The situation has got much worse since.  A few days ago Egyptian and UAE fighters bombed Islamist militias.  There are two rival governments and different groups fighting it out on the ground in what is a very confused situation as the county rapidly sinks into a civil war.

In March I wrote;

Does that Libya is on the brink matter?  I think it does for three reasons.

  • First, there is a humanitarian issue. 
  • Second, we will have a refugee crisis much closer to Europe. 
  • Lastly the raison d’etre of this blog, energy security.  The graph below shows the oil and gas production for Libya (source BP statistical review of world energy 2013).

Libyan oil and gas productionNothing has changed to alter what I wrote but with other problems in the middle east and other parts of the Ukraine its not surprising that the world’s eyes are not on Libya.  But they need to be and once Libya becomes like Syria they will be.  In the meanwhile little oil and gas coming out this will put more pressure on Saudi Arabia to pump more.  This is all right as long as they are able to do so and shows that shale oil is not going to be the game changer that most people think it will be.  We are still horribly dependent on declining stocks of conventional oil.


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