web analytics

The Very Bad Slightly Good Things About the Russian Invasion

Written By: - Date published: 8:49 pm, September 25th, 2022 - 8 comments
Categories: energy, Europe, food, International, Russia, uncategorized - Tags:

The Russian invasion of the Ukraine has cost tens of thousands of people their lives, millions of people their homes, seriously disrupted billions of people,  and increased the threat of nuclear war.

But…

Let’s go briefly through European Union energy security, materials security, food security, social cohesion, and cooperation. All pretty necessary to make any kind of transition let alone one with any justice to it.

Energy

While Russia has cut off gas supplies to Europe, Europe is forming a tighter and larger energy generation and distribution system. The North Seas Countries’ Offshore Grid is in operation.

The offshore wind farms across the North Sea are staggering in their size and capacity.

Further links from the UK grid to Morocco have already assembled plans and investors.

European countries that have depended on Russian gas are going through a fast energy crisis, and winter is approaching. The question of whether Germany – the largest part of the EU economy – can make a transition fast enough.

Europe does believe it has a plan that could make this possible. Here comes winter.

Materials Security

The Russian invasion has already radically disrupted supply chains of the raw materials needed for the coming fuel transition. European countries are in a sense remembering their own reserves, motivated to extract their own resources for batteries and other key materials.

The European race to secure such materials has been well forecast, but not at this speed.

Europe has also launched the Critical Raw Materials Act, to decrease reliance on Chinese-sourced materials.

It won’t ever have self-sufficiency, but it won’t ever return to the way it was either. As companies relocate their production in to Europe and seek new suppliers, the EU is incentivising low carbon options, boosting innovation and materials efficiencies, but still requiring key minerals and metals from Africa in nickel and cobalt among others.

Food Security

Russia undeniably uses food as a weapon. But Europe’s harvests for 2022 were in trouble from climate change too, with the worst droughts on record.

Food exporters such as little old New Zealand have export prices going through the roof. Even as Fonterra shrinks its production to largely New Zealand and Australia, it is keeping a lot of farmers pretty happy – though its primary focus remains China.

The European Common Agricultural Policy has in reality delivered a pretty resilient system for within Europe. The largest food threat arising from the Russian invasion is to poorer countries and their access to Ukrainian grain. The EU has generated a series of partnerships to address the broader global responses necessary for food security globally.

The EU remains an agricultural superpower and its degree of coherence on agriculture is a leading model. And yes, we have a small part to play in that too.

Social Cohesion

For all the rise of hard right anti-immigration governments are worrying in Italy and Sweden and Hungary, check out Poland.

Who knows how long Poland can sustain this welcome, but it sure beats the alternative.

The war’s knock-on effect to energy markets is also forcing governments to protect their citizens from its impact with massive subsidies.

France, Germany, the UK and many other countries are actively softening the blow of the energy transition they have been forced into.

The EU even has a thing called cohesion policy, and has massively increased support through it.

It’s something that perhaps only the old in New Zealand now recall.

Cooperation

This is the largest and most comprehensive set of threats Europe has faced since World War Two. Some were pre-existing and the war has made them far worse. Some are specific to this time.

The war in the Ukraine is likely to last for a few years, not months. Ukraine will not deal and will fight for every acre lost. The pressures this war has placed on Europe are and will continue to be immense, and it will utterly change Europe’s energy, materials, food, social security and internal cohesion.

These elements are also some of the most important for the rebuild of Ukraine, and it will be European Union dedication to that task which will achieve that rebuild.

Prior to the invasion the combined impact of the multiyear Eurozone and Mediterranean refugee crisis had slowly eroded social solidarity norms. Huge gaps between Europe’s normative rhetoric and reality were fertile ground for the destruction of left-leaning progressive politics and the rise of totally divisive hard right extremism. That won’t go away now, as seen this month in Italy and Sweden.

But Europe through this year has been forced to be unified, forced to make energy transitions, forced to be more accepting of refugees (at least by some countries), and forced to get its act together and be a union, not just European. I’m not even needing to mention defence cooperation.

It sure isn’t fun for anyone let alone Ukraine, but Europe is reacting within an historical turning point. The speed and scale of its reactions particularly compared to the United Nations are paving the way for rapid institutional renewal and a reassertion of the EU as both a project and a kind of ideal.

The immediate question is: will all of this newfound momentum survive the winter?

Long term this is becoming something even stronger than the Marshall Plan.

8 comments on “The Very Bad Slightly Good Things About the Russian Invasion ”

  1. Stuart Munro 1

    With any luck, conscription will eventually drag the Russian masses out of their apathy to demand create a less corrupt state. The positive effect on subject peoples and neighbouring states would be enormous.

  2. Scud 2

    Going to make an interesting winter in Europe, if Europe gets through this without any major issues.

    Then Tsar Poot's attempts of Energy Blackmail in Europe would go up a 5th of Nov Roman candle on a rainy night.

    Yep he's definitely no longer holding a pair of 2's but a pair of Jokers at table now

  3. Being critical of immigration isn't necessarily "hard-right"; it is a thoroughly working class concern also.

    We should be realistic about the social costs of government policies rather than resort to emotive slogans.

  4. denby 4

    sounds like a copy and paste straight out of the CIA handbook on US public relations. I don't see how people dying be they Russian or Ukranian is a "good thing" The only winners are US arms manufactories whom are happy to just keep pumping arms into the country. But you probably don't want to go there, it doesn't fit with the "your either with us or against us mentality".

    A negotiated settlement is the best outcome for both countries in my opinion. Have a nice day.

    • Barfly 4.1

      "A negotiated settlement is the best outcome for both countries in my opinion. Have a nice day."

      At this point I believe Putin will not agree any settlement that he doesn't profit from and he must not be allowed to profit from starting a war for territorial acquisition that he started.

  5. Poission 5

    The energy crisis in Europe,is more to do with policy failures that are seen when the tide goes out,mostly from the arguments of the lowlands such as Germany,Netherlands,with substantive funding to replace existing baseline generation with Russian gas,or US biomass.

    Germany spent 1/2 trillion Euros,replacing Nuclear with both biomass and gas generation for baseload and intermittent capacity such as wind and solar,whilst not reducing load.

    The so called plan 55,requires the removal of agriculture land ( 22 million hectares) from food production to Biomass for energy production,which does not reduce carbon emissions.

    The collapse of the European manufacturing base,will make the transformation to reduced reliance on imported energy and materials even greater as the Trade surplus of Europe reverts to debt economies with increasing interest load.

    The only factor sustaining europe at present is the China zero covid policy,which has reduced its imports of LNG and coal (both needed for Europe's winter)

  6. tsmithfield 6

    One of the big advantages is soon there will only be two crazy super powers in the world to worry about.

  7. Scud 7

    Looks like it's going from bad to worst & now shocking bad for the Russian Army around the Lyman Area?

    If this Russian Map,0that was pinch from Telegram or from other Russian SM platform is correct we are:-

    Probably looking at the another Kherson type Pocket developing? With the UrK Military again using a major River/ Natural Obstacle as form a Flank Protection & stopping the Russians from Retreating in good order.

    Just hope the weather holds for UkR Military to complete this phase of the current Counter Offensive? As it must be getting close for General Mud arriving soon, which will slow down the UkR Army's Motorised Light Infantry & Cavalry Units from exploiting the open Greens fields beyond.

    Run Russian Run as the Ukrainian Guns go Boom Boom!

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Govt keeps AM on the air in Northland
    Minister of Broadcasting and Media Willie Jackson and Minister for Emergency Management Kieran McAnulty today announced a $1.48 million package to fund the repair and replacement of three transmission masts in Northland to ensure AM radio can stay on air in the region. “This funding will secure the reinstatement of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    8 hours ago
  • Multi million dollar package to tackle retail crime and reoffending
    A multi million dollar package to tackle retail crime and reoffending is the most significant crime prevention financial package in recent memory  New fog cannon subsidy scheme set up. Government to provide $4000 for all small shops and dairies in New Zealand who want a fog cannon installed, with shops ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • Funding boost to support NZ’s game development industry
    New Zealand’s game developers will receive an immediate funding boost to help support the growth of local studios beyond the current Dunedin centre. “New Zealand’s game development sector has been rapidly growing. The latest data from the New Zealand Game Developers Association shows the total revenue for the industry is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    12 hours ago
  • A new strategy for Pacific housing
    New and existing housing initiatives are being brought together to improve home ownership for Pacific people said Minister for Pacific Peoples, Aupito William Sio. Fale mo Aiga: Pacific Housing Strategy and Action Plan 2030, launched today, is the Government’s targeted response to the housing challenges faced by Pacific Aotearoa. Minister ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Government takes action on pay parity for healthcare workers
    Thousands of frontline community health workers – including nurses in aged-care facilities - are in for a pay rise as the Labour Government takes action on pay parity in the health sector. “I’m pleased to announce that Cabinet has agreed to on-going funding of $200 million a year so that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    20 hours ago
  • World’s first algae-based local anaesthetic another step closer to reality
    A partnership between the Government and the Cawthron Institute has delivered a breakthrough in the production of a potent microalgal ingredient for the world’s first algae-based pain medication, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor announced.  “Scientists at Cawthron Institute in Nelson have developed a reliable and commercially scalable method for producing neosaxitoxin, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Ngāti Mutunga o Wharekauri and the Crown sign Agreement in Principle| Ka waitohu a Ngāti Mutunga o...
    Ngāti Mutunga o Wharekauri and the Crown have signed an Agreement in Principle marking a significant milestone towards the settlement of their historical Treaty of Waitangi claims. Ngāti Mutunga are based on Wharekauri/Chatham Islands and are the second of two iwi/imi to reach agreement with the Crown. “Today’s signing follows ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Further ACC reforms introduced to Parliament
    New reporting requirements on access to ACC Earlier access to minimum rate of compensation Refinement to ACC purpose to focus on supporting all eligible injured people to access ACC The Accident Compensation (Access Reporting and Other Matters) Amendment Bill which aims to improve access to ACC for all injured people, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government supports Chatham Islands' resilience
    The Government is supporting the Chatham Islands’ resilience to extreme weather events and natural hazards through a grant to secure safe drinking water, Minister for Emergency Management Kieran McAnulty said. “Many households in the Chatham Islands lack easy access to drinking water and have been forced to get water to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New Chief Coroner appointed
    Coroner Anna Tutton has been appointed as the new Chief Coroner, Attorney-General David Parker announced today. Anna Tutton was appointed as a Coroner in January 2015, based in Christchurch, and as Deputy Chief Coroner in 2020.  After the previous Chief Coroner, Judge Deborah Marshall, retired Ms Tutton took on the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • DIRA Amendment Bill passes third reading
    The Government has passed an Amendment Bill today to support Fonterra’s move to a new capital structure and the continued success of New Zealand’s dairy industry. The Dairy Industry Restructuring (Fonterra Capital Restructuring) Amendment Bill will allow the Fonterra co-operative to make changes to its capital structure, as well as ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Minister Whaitiri to attend Food Ministers’ Meeting with Australian counterparts
    Minister for Food Safety Meka Whaitiri will attend the Fourth Australia and New Zealand Food Ministers’ Meeting in Melbourne on Friday. It will be the first time the meeting has been held in person since the Covid-19 pandemic disrupted international travel. “The Food Ministers’ Meeting sets the policy direction for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New Kiwibank parent appoints directors
    David McLean and Sir Brian Roche have been appointed as the first two directors of the newly incorporated Kiwi Group Capital Limited (KCG), the parent company of Kiwibank. In August, the Government acquired 100 percent of Kiwi Group Holdings, which also operates New Zealand Home Loans, from NZ Post, ACC ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Defence Ministers meet in Cambodia
    Minister of Defence Peeni Henare attended the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Defence Ministers’ Meeting-Plus (ADMM-Plus) in Siem Reap, Cambodia. “The first face to face meeting of the ADMM-Plus members is an opportunity for me to highlight New Zealand’s position on key regional security matters,” Peeni Henare said.  “In ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Pay equity extended to thousands more social workers
    The Government will extend pay equity to all community and iwi organisations who employ social workers and receive funding from the Crown, Minister for Women Jan Tinetti announced today. We expect this will improve the lives of approximately 4,600 social workers. “This extension means thousands more social workers will be ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Taskforce set up to protect construction industry from product shortages & delays
    New ‘Critical Materials Taskforce’ will trouble shoot building materials shortages Focus on maximising productivity & cushioning businesses from supply chain risks Successful ‘Plasterboard Taskforce’ reshaped to include broader sector knowledge and expertise Will provide guidance, data and information to support builders, designers and business owners A new Critical Materials Taskforce ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Bigger ED, more theatres and more beds in new Whangārei Hospital
    A new emergency department with three times more space will be part of the first stage of a two-stage project to build a new hospital for Whangārei and Northland. The Government has today confirmed funding for stage one of the new hospital – an acute services building and a child-health ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Finnish PM to visit New Zealand
    Finland’s Prime Minister Sanna Marin, accompanied by Minister for Development Cooperation and Foreign Trade Ville Skinnari and a business delegation will visit New Zealand next week, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced today. The two leaders will meet in Auckland. “New Zealand and Finland are natural partners. We share similar approaches ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New recreational rules to support hāpuku and bass fisheries
    The daily limits on recreationally caught hāpuku (also known as groper) and bass will be lowered to a total of two per person in some areas, with a new accumulation limit of three per person on multi-day trips. Oceans and Fisheries Minister, David Parker said the rule changes would take ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Jobs for Nature enabling Mātāuranga Māori
    Mātāuranga Māori is at the heart of the latest tranche of Jobs for Nature projects set to promote biodiversity and reduce impacts of climate change on Māori land, Minister of Conservation Poto Williams says. Project work will include the creation of an ecological corridor in Tairāwhiti, protecting 60 hectares of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Supporting resilient shipping infrastructure in Vanuatu
    The Government has announced further support to Vanuatu to assist in constructing climate-resilient wharves as part of the Vanuatu Inter-Island Shipping Support Project (VISSP). “Aotearoa New Zealand is committed to supporting the economic recovery of our Pacific region in a way that continues to provide growth and supports climate resilience,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government welcomes High Court ruling on climate case
    The High Court has today confirmed the legality of the advice provided by the Climate Change Commission (the Commision) to inform New Zealand’s nationally determined contribution (NDC) and the first three emissions budgets.  Minister of Climate Change James Shaw says New Zealanders can have confidence in the Commission and of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government introduces changes to mining Act with stronger environmental focus
    ·         Crown Minerals Act will no longer actively “promote” prospecting, exploration, and mining of Crown-owned minerals ·         Will create more certainty around engagement between industry, iwi and hapū. The Government is proposing changes to modernise the Crown Minerals Act 1991 (CMA) to support more environmentally conscious management of resources, says ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Speech to Building Nations 2050 conference
    Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa. Good morning and thank you, Jack, for the introduction. I’d like to take a moment to acknowledge Infrastructure New Zealand Chair, Margaret Devlin and all the sponsors and organisers of this event for bringing us together in ‘Building Nations 2050’. I would also like to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Better natural hazard information for home buyers
    Associate Minister of Local Government Kieran McAnulty has today introduced legislation to empower councils to share better information about natural hazards with the public. The Local Government Official Information Amendment (LGOIMA) Bill will make it easier for Councils to share clear and concise information in Land Information Memorandum (LIM) reports. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New Zealand welcomes visiting WTO Director General
    The World Trade Organization (WTO) Director General Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala visits New Zealand this week. Minister for Trade and Export Growth Damien O’Connor said the WTO was essential to New Zealand as a small export-dependent trading nation.  “New Zealand’s economic security depends on our ability to trade. Our goods exports ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Faster, cheaper, better resource management law given first reading
    New laws that will deliver a faster, cheaper, and better resource management system had their first reading in the House today. The Spatial Planning (SP) and the Natural and Built Environment (NBE) Bills, which were introduced last week, will replace the 30-year-old Resource Management Act (RMA). Environment Minister David Parker ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Minister Sio to meet new Vanuatu PM
    Associate Foreign Affairs Minister Aupito William Sio travels to Vanuatu today, to meet with the new Government led by Prime Minister Alatoi Ishmael Kalsakau and to represent Aotearoa New Zealand at the Pacific Community (SPC) Ministerial Conference being hosted in Port Vila. Minister Sio will have a number of bilateral meetings with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Driving ahead with the Clean Car Standard
    Following discussions with vehicle importers, the Government has confirmed the Clean Car Standard will be phased in from 1 December 2022, significantly reducing the CO2 emissions of light vehicles in New Zealand, announced Transport Minister Michael Wood. “Emissions from our light vehicle fleet are the single largest source of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Speech to Constitutional Kōrero conference
    Our Evolving Sense of Nationhood – Me Anga Whakamua Indigenous Futures and New Zealand’s Constitution Tuia ki runga, Tuia ki raro, Tuia te here tangata, Mai i te wheiao ki te ao mārama Ka rongo te pō ka rongo te āo! Tīhei Mauri Ora! Kei ngā miro o te ao ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Rental sector changes to regulate residential property managers, clear up meth confusion and ease pr...
    A suite of measures to improve the lives of renters and landlords has been announced by Housing Minister Dr Megan Woods as the Government makes more progress on reform of the rental sector. “Nearly 600,000 households rent in New Zealand and these measures will result in regulated oversight of residential ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Further sanctions on the political and economic elites of Russia and Belarus
    Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta today announced further sanctions on members of the inner circles of governments in Russia and Belarus, as part of the ongoing response to the war in Ukraine. “Aotearoa New Zealand first moved against the powerful and wealthy in Russia with sanctions on political and economic ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Another step towards improved supermarket competition
    The Bill to trigger an unprecedented shake-up of the grocery sector and deliver New Zealanders a fairer deal at the checkout and help tackle cost of living pressures is ready for its first reading at Parliament. “The duopoly has now been given plenty of warning. If they fail to adequately ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Black Ferns to be celebrated at Parliament
    A public event and celebration will be held on Parliament’s lawn on December 13 to celebrate our Rugby World Cup winning Black Ferns. “The Black Ferns’ triumph at Eden Park is one of New Zealand’s greatest sporting moments,” Grant Robertson said. “They are extraordinary athletes, exceptional people and proud New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Autism Guideline released by Ministry
    The release of the latest edition of the Aotearoa New Zealand Autism Guideline – He Waka Huia Takiwātanga Rau has been welcomed by Minister for Disability Issues Poto Williams today. The Guideline provides an opportunity to better understand and communicate best practices for supporting autistic people and their families and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Speech to Aotearoa Refugee Hui
    Nga mihi nui ki a koutou, Welcome to the Parliament, your Parliament. It is great to see the community here in such numbers, and I am happy to be here with my parliamentary colleagues to listen and take part in the discussions today. I particularly want to acknowledge Ibrahim Omer ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Global climate talks underline need for domestic action
    Minister of Climate Change James Shaw marked the end of COP27 negotiations in Egypt by saying it was now crunch time for counties to step up and take urgent action at home. “Even though we have these international negotiations every year, our focus must always be on what we do ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Defence Minister visits Ukraine and Poland
    Defence Minister Peeni Henare has visited Ukraine and Poland, holding talks with his Ministerial counterparts. During the talks Minister Henare reaffirmed New Zealand’s unwavering support for the Ukrainian defence against Russia’s illegal and unprovoked invasion.   The visit  was a further demonstration of New Zealand’s ongoing support to the people ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Stuart Nash to attend OECD meetings
    Small Business Minister Stuart Nash will travel to Paris today to attend small business meetings with the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). Stuart Nash will chair the OECD’s Digital for SMEs (D4SME) Steering Group meeting and the 4th Roundtable of the OECD D4SME Global Initiative. “The OECD’s Digital ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Human Rights Act enhanced to protect religious communities
    The Government will amend the law to make sure religious communities feel safe and welcome in New Zealand. After extensive consultation, with more than 19,000 submissions on six proposals, the Government will make one change to address incitement towards religious communities while asking for further work to be done alongside ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago