On November 12, the United States and China released a joint statement on climate change revealing for the first time both countries’ post-2020 emissions targets.
An energy revolution fueled by the rapidly growing production of unconventional oil and gas is under way in the United States today, but its effects so far on the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC)—which still produces nearly a quarter of the world’s oil—have so far been strikingly limited.
Maintaining international security and pursuing American interests is more difficult now than perhaps at any time in history. The security environment that the United States faces is more complex, dynamic, and difficult to predict. At the same time, no domestic consensus exists on the purposes of American power and how best to pursue them. The Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) will look ahead in this annual volume at the crises and opportunities that will likely arise in 2015, how best to deal with them, and what lasting effects they might leave for the next American administration and its allies around the world.
For the fifth time in eight and a half years, Russia and Ukraine signed another gas deal, literally at the eleventh hour, late evening on October 30 in Brussels. This time negotiations were conducted under the mediation of the European Union (EU) with six months of back and forth discussions, during which Russia ceased supplying gas to Ukraine while gas transit to Europe continued.
Oil prices have collapsed dramatically since June. As our colleagues noted earlier this week , Brent prices in the low $80s translate to Bakken prices in the low $70s (or below), putting pressure on unconventional producers.
On the surface, the easy and conventional explanation for the recent drop (20% since June) in oil prices - even in the face of heightened geopolitical risk/unrest in key oil producing regions - has focused mainly on the growth in supply (especially in the United States), lackluster global demand, and sizable global inventories. In combination, this trifecta has led market analysts to be both complacent (to date, this unrest has not impeded production volumes) and more recently, bearish. U.S. liquids production continues to grow; Russian exports, even in the face of sanctions remain high, and Iraq and Iran continue to export even as Libyan volumes go up and down.
It isn’t often that speakers at the United Nations get standing ovations, but that is what Marshall Islands poet Kathy Jetnil-Kijiner, 26, received at the September 23 UN Climate Summit in New York after reading a haunting poem  addressed to her seven-month-old daughter.
On Friday September 5, a ceasefire between the Ukrainian government and pro-Russian separatist rebels in the east of the country (mainly Donestk and Luhansk oblasts) went into effect, following the meeting in Minsk of a “contact group” representing Ukraine, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), and Russia.
The Maghreb is looking south to secure its future. Though ties between sub-Saharan and North Africa are deep and go back centuries, after independence in the 1950s and 1960s, Maghreb countries primarily viewed sub-Saharan Africa as an arena for competition among themselves.
Some of the United States’ most vital and impactful relationships with African nations are in the health sector.