Monday, September 15

Energy Insecurity in South America

Not that we need more energy insecure issues to think about, but with recent pipeline sabotage in Bolivia impacting the natural gas production there, leaders in South America are scrambling to find diplomatic solutions to worsening conditions within this energy rich nation. Despite a highly popular leader (leftist/populist leader Evo Morales recently was given a confidence vote by 67% of Bolivians), Evo Morales has been treading thin water with leaders of the natural gas rich eastern region of the country, who are afraid that they will have to contribute to a social security program for workers over the age of 60 and more afraid that their stranglehold on production land will be endangered by the left-leaning government.

Evo Morales is locked in a bitter standoff with right-wing opposition governors who are pushing for autonomy. This has led to insurrection in parts of Bolivia leaving at least 30 protesters on both sides of the conflict dead.

Brazil, the most populous nation in South America, is dependent on Bolivia to supply about half of its natural gas needs and has had that supply cut in half by Bolivia's decision to close crucial pipelines last week.

More from the NY Times.

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