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The Risk Pivot

The Risk Pivot: Great Powers, International Security, and the Energy Revolution

Copyright Date: 2015
Pages: 120
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  • Book Info
    The Risk Pivot
    Book Description:

    The last decade has seen a revolution in global energy. First, we saw explosive growth in demand from Asia's rising powers, which fueled fears about scarcity and conflict. But we've also seen an American revolution in technology and markets, resulting in a dramatic increase in sup-ply. This is strengthening America's hand in the world-but it's not without complications. There are major security consequences of these shifts. Among the most consequential are China and India, Asia's emerging giants, which are increasingly exposed to political risks associated with energy risks, as well as the energy flows, pivoting to Asia. Meanwhile the great powers struggle to balance their need for fossil fuels with a mounting effort to tackle climate change. The top powers, and the United States above all, face a stra-tegic choice: whether to use energy as a weapon of geopolitics, or as a tool of a stable order.



    1. The President and the King-Key Messages of the Book

    2. The Energy Revolutions-A Primer

    Geopolitics in Flux-The Players

    3. Choices-Scenarios, and the Choice the Powers Confront

    4. Rough Seas Ahead-The Great Powers' Search for Energy Security

    Globalization and Complexity-The Problems

    5. Transition in the Gulf

    6. The Turbulent Middle

    7. Fragile States

    8. The Russian Problem

    9. Connections-from Pipelines to Politics

    Governance-The Partners

    10. An Emerging System of Global Energy Governance

    11. Leadership Choices

    eISBN: 978-0-8157-2605-0
    Subjects: Political Science, Economics

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-viii)
  3. CHAPTER ONE Introduction: An Energy Revolution
    (pp. 1-18)

    This is a book about the geopolitical consequences of revolutionary changes in the supply, demand, and flow of energy. These changes are transforming the global economy, reordering the relationship between states, and leading to rapid changes in the nature of, and prospects for, international security. Furthermore, climate change and fossil fuel pollution are creating pressures for an unprecedented shift in the way we use energy, piling new problems on both national and international policy.

    The world’s leading powers are grappling to understand this revolution. The pressure is greatest in Asia, where China and India are finding that resource risk is...

  4. CHAPTER TWO Energy and Geopolitics
    (pp. 19-50)

    When we look closely at contemporary geopolitics, we see time and again that energy and other resource questions are central to the struggle for influence between the established and the emerging powers.

    At one level, this is simple: when it comes to energy, the established powers have it or have access to it, and the emerging powers can continue to rise only if they gain increased access. Therein lies the struggle, as energy drives or amplifies underlying tensions. This rivalry can be managed, however. Global energy markets—which need political stability, good regulation, and long-term investment—can be a source...

  5. CHAPTER THREE Resources and Globalization
    (pp. 51-94)

    As the United States and China struggle to define their geopolitical relationship, with Russia maneuvering and India looming, they do so against the backdrop of equally important changes in contemporary globalization. Just as energy competition risks exacerbating tensions at the geopolitical level, so energy and resource dynamics risk adding to the volatility and instability of contemporary globalization—especially for its newest entrants, the “global middle.”

    To understand these dynamics, we return once again to the Suez, a decade after the meeting between President Franklin D. Roosevelt and Saudi King Abdulaziz Ibn Saud; but this is an occasion not of diplomacy,...

  6. CHAPTER FOUR Energy and Climate
    (pp. 95-120)

    In 2011 Susan Rice—then U.S. permanent representative to the United Nations, later U.S. national security adviser—admonished the Security Council for a “pathetic” dereliction of duty in failing to accept its “essential responsibility to address the clear-cut peace and security implications of a changing climate.”¹

    Rice’s remarks reflect a long-standing preoccupation with the potential for climate change to transform the U.S. security environment. The U.S. military leadership has been interested in the issue since the cold war. Military officials are concerned about the impact of a changing climate on their bases, many of which are vulnerable to sea level...

  7. CHAPTER FIVE Toward Sustainable Globalization: The International Governance of Energy
    (pp. 121-148)

    We’ve entered a phase in the evolution of both geopolitics and globalization where energy and resource dynamics play a crucial and complicating role. In the case of geopolitics, energy competition and insecurity are amplifying tensions among the top powers. In the case of globalization, energy and related resource dynamics—especially in food—are exacerbating turbulence and undermining resilience for states of the global middle, for the urban poor, and for fragile states. Global energy markets in turn are vulnerable to being destabilized, including along vital connecting networks. And hanging over all are the mounting concerns about our ability to stabilize...

  8. Acknowledgments
    (pp. 149-150)
  9. Notes
    (pp. 151-186)
  10. Index
    (pp. 187-206)
  11. Back Matter
    (pp. 207-207)