Sept. 11, 2008


Description

The luncheon will continue as scheduled today for those able to attend. We look forward to seeing you if possible and be safe. 

 
$120+ oil has a number of causes but the influence of Russia has been overwhelming and, surprisingly, underestimated and not discussed enough. Under Vladimir Putin, Russia has taken a giant step backwards into its Soviet past, and nowhere is this more evident than in the realm of energy politics. Modern Russian politics and energy sources, first oil and then both oil and gas, have been inextricably connected in a way unmatched by any other major power in the history of the world. This time, however, the state would be bare without the fig leaf of legitimacy that communist ideology once offered.

One reason for Putin’s huge popularity at home is that he has tapped into Russians’ two strong yearnings: a cultural affinity for strong, Tsar-like leadership, quite different from Western European and North American predilections, and an understandable hunger for prestige and world recognition, a need to be relevant. In the course of 15 years, the Russian people saw their country go from superpower to junior partner, and then thanks to Putin, to a renaissance of empowerment. Unlike during the Soviet era, Putin’s sojourn has not been on the back of nuclear weapons, which the country still owns in abundance, but has been fueled by oil and gas. What Nikita Khrushchev and Leonid Brezhnev could not do with nuclear weapons and raw military power, Putin has attempted with oil and gas, in what arguably can be called energy imperialism. 

Russia’s prowess in, and reliance on, the use of oil and gas to gain political clout has its roots in the country’s tumultuous and astounding history. Developed over decades, the Russian repertoire of petro-political maneuvers is the product of gradual changes punctuated by dramatic moments of symbolic and concrete significance. At times, oil was weaponized as a matter of the system’s survival. Other times, it seemed the best possible way to pry open the door to the reluctant West. In both cases, the regime often found that the best way to be treated as part of Europe was through the strategic use of its raw materials.

This talk and book deal with Putin and the re-Sovietization of the country using energy sources as the means of personal and national empowerment. Vladimir Putin – his personality, his role in Russian evolution, and especially, his place in Russian hearts and minds – are all necessary to understand the cultural underpinnings of his success. We discuss history, analyze, and predict. More than in any other country, including the largest consumer of all, the United States, oil and gas have played a pivotal role in the modern history of Russia, the key to Putin’s re-Sovietization. Although Russia held recent elections with a new President, Dmitri Medvedev, Putin is in a commanding position. He will be around for a long while and he has to be reckoned with.

The future of Russia is, again, its past and we in the West must take notice.

MENU
  
If you have special dietary needs (diabetic, religious, allergies, etc.) please include a note of your meal needs during the on-line registration process in the box labeled "Optional comments for the event planner."

Fruit Salad
Chicken Crepes
Ice cream pecan ball w/chocolate sauce
 
Valet parking is available at the ExxonMobil Building for $7.00.  You may also park at in the public parking lots around the ExxonMobil Building for fees that are generally in the $5 - $6 range.
  
 

Featured Speakers

Speaker: MICHAEL J. ECONOMIDES
Speaker MICHAEL J. ECONOMIDES
Chairman XGAS & Paleon Oil & Gas   MICHAEL J. ECONOMIDES is Chairman of the Board of XGAS and Paleon Oil and Gas. He is also a Professor at the Cullen College of Engineering, University of Houston. His professional interests include petroleum production and petroleum management, a particular emphasis on …

Chairman
XGAS & Paleon Oil & Gas
 

MICHAEL J. ECONOMIDES is Chairman of the Board of XGAS and Paleon Oil and Gas. He is also a Professor at the Cullen College of Engineering, University of Houston. His professional interests include petroleum production and petroleum management, a particular emphasis on natural gas, natural gas transportation, LNG, CNG and processing, economics and geopolitics. Previously he was the Samuel R. Noble Professor of Petroleum Engineering at Texas A&M University and served as Chief Scientist of the Global Petroleum Research Institute (GPRI).



Prior to joining the faculty at
Texas A&M University, Professor Economides was the Director of the Institute of Drilling and Production at the Leoben Mining University in Austria. Before that, Dr. Economides worked in a variety of senior technical and managerial positions with a major petroleum services company.



His publications include authoring or co-authoring of 14 professional textbooks and books, including “The Color Of Oil” and “From Soviet to Putin and Back”, and over 200 journal papers and articles. He is also the Editor-in-Chief of the Energy Tribune. Economides does a wide range of industrial consulting, including major retainers by national oil companies at the country level and by Fortune 500 companies. He has had professional activities in over 70 countries. In addition to his technical interests he has written extensively in wide circulation media in a broad range of issues associated with energy, energy economics and geopolitical issues. He also appears regularly as a guest and expert commentator on national and international television programs.

Full Description



Organizer

Barry Faulkner


Date and Time

Thu, Sept. 11, 2008

11:30 a.m. - 1 p.m.
(GMT-0600) US/Central

Event has ended

Location

Petroleum Club of Houston, ExxonMobil Bldg, 43 Floor

800 Bell Street
Houston, Texas 77002
USA