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The Bridge Reviews

The Bridge by Thane Gustafson

The Bridge: Natural Gas in a Redivided Europe

Thane Gustafson

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1 review

Imprint: Harvard University Press
Publisher: Harvard University Press
Publication date: 31 Jan 2020
ISBN: 9780674987951

Europe and Russia are pushing against each other in a contest of economic doctrines and political ambitions, seemingly erasing the vision of cooperation that emerged from the end of the Cold War. Thane Gustafson argues that natural gas serves as a bridge over troubled geopolitical waters, uniting the region through common economic interests.

4 stars out of 5
Ed Crooks
24 Jan 2020

"Thane Gustafson demonstrates the realpolitik of energy supply in geopolitical relations with Russia"

The Bridge, a richly detailed analysis written with a relaxed, lucid style, justifies that decision. One of Gustafson’s central themes is the way that economics have often trumped politics in the European gas trade. The first deal to import Russian gas through the Iron Curtain was signed by Austria in 1969 after huge reserves were discovered in western Siberia, and between 1970 and 1990 Soviet gas exports to western Europe soared from about 1bn cubic metres a year to about 60bn.