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Russia: more investment needed

While the world has been fretting about oil prices near $100 a barrel, what it should really be worried about is gas. Europe today and the US in the future are moving towards a staggering dependence on imported natural gas. By Nadejda Victor, Program on Energy and Sustainable Development, Stanford University

AS OIL prices rise, the price of gas for European consumers will also rise, as it is linked to the prices of diesel and heating oil. However, the primary concern about gas is not price, but security of supply. Europe imports 60% of its gas, mostly from Russia and Algeria, and that dependence (especially from Russia) is set to grow. Russia is an energy superpower: it holds the world's largest gas reserves, the second-largest coal reserves and the seventh-largest oil reserves. Russia alone produces 21% of the world's gas and it will remain a crucial pillar of the world's energy security for years to come. Russia has been a reliable gas supplier for decades, although spats with Ukraine in 2006

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