It was no accident.This was absolutely sabotage, and to suggest anything else would be, for lack of a better word, stupid.
On Tuesday, three breaches were discovered in the Nord Stream 1 and 2 natural gas pipelines. And these breaches were not the result of an earthquake or maintenance malfunction.
These breaches were deliberate, and now folks are trying to find who’s responsible.
Was it Vladimir Putin?
On the surface, it doesn’t really make sense.
Russia doesn’t need to destroy this pipeline to suffocate Europe. In fact, just a few weeks ago, Russia shut down Nord Stream 1 completely and did so without explosives.
That being said, it could be argued that Putin, who’s clearly as crazy as Randy Quaid on a cocaine binge, would have no problem destroying that pipeline just to show the world that he's not to be toyed with and will burn everything to the ground if necessary.
Just look at how close Russia has already come to bombing nuclear power plants in Ukraine.
Then there are those who believe the U.S. is behind this, which isn’t really a stretch — not when you think about who has the most to gain from a destroyed natural gas pipeline that supplied 40% of the EU’s natural gas last year.
The U.S. has a lot of natural gas that it’s more than willing to sell to cold and hungry Europeans. It’s also good for the military industrial complex, which does quite well during times of conflict in any continent.
Of course, I don’t want to be a conspiracy theorist and, unless you were personally involved, you have no idea what really happened either.
But there is one thing we do know…
Without a strong, well-diversified energy economy in Europe that's free of overreliance on Russia, the EU is as vulnerable as a bag of Doritos on Willie Nelson’s tour bus.
From Crisis Comes Opportunity
I’ve often wondered why the EU dragged its feet on transitioning away from Russian oil and gas.
Just from a simple national security standpoint, I don’t think you have to be a geopolitical expert to understand that relying so heavily on Russian oil and gas has always been a really bad idea.
In any event, Europe is heading into what will prove to be a very harsh and economically devastating winter.
This, however, will absolutely expedite the EU’s transition away from Russian oil and gas reliance.
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Despite the cost-prohibitive nature of fracking in Europe, as well as the environmental damage that comes with fracking (something Europeans have historically been concerned about), that’s back on the table.
And Germany is now slowing the phase-out of its nuclear power plants.
Of course, if you’re looking for a way to profit from this, your best bet would be on natural gas in the U.S., which will supply the lion’s share of imported natural gas to the EU.
There’s no way to play Germany’s slowdown on phasing out its nuclear power plants, though, and any coal-fired power plants coming back online won’t stay online beyond the end of the decade.
That’s not to say you can’t make a few bucks in the near term.
But for me, I’m playing the long game here.
Personally, I’m looking for a way to make money from the EU's transition away from Russian oil and gas by investing in the energy and transportation technologies that will not only be profitable in the near term and during times of crisis but also over the long term and in times of peace.
And that’s why I’m bullish on whatever the EU decides is in the best interests of its move away from Russian oil and gas.
The EU Could Make This Car Company Billions
Next week, the European Commission will publish a new plan showing that over the next eight years, it’s looking to invest more than $562 billion in its electrical grid to support “the planned rapid uptake of electric vehicles, renewable energy and heat pumps, and shift away from fossil fuels.”
The draft of this new plan also noted that the EU plans to have 30 million zero-emission vehicles on the roads by 2030 and solar panels on all new homes by 2029.
Now, I don’t know if this will happen.
Make no mistake, this is a lofty goal.
But Europe's sure going to give it a go, and investors who play their cards right should do quite well with the EU’s very aggressive new energy plan.
One company that’s really going to get a nice boost from this is a small electric vehicle startup in Germany that’s producing an electric car that can run entirely on electricity produced from solar cells integrated into the vehicle itself.
In other words, there's no need to ever plug into a grid that is largely powered by imported natural gas.
The car will also soon sell for less than $30,000, and that’s before any tax credits, which can exceed $12,000 depending where you live.
The company already has more than 20,000 pre-orders (or $600 million worth of pre-orders), and they continue to roll in.
The technology is fascinating and, quite frankly, looks like it’s beating a lot of other electric car manufacturers to the punch with its solar integration — including Tesla.
So it’s no surprise that insiders have been very bullish on this thing over the past few months, as the EU’s energy economy has become dangerously susceptible to power outages.
Bottom line: This car only needs the sun to charge its battery, and Russia doesn’t own the sun.
Jeff is the founder and managing editor of Green Chip Stocks. For more on Jeff, go to his editor’s page.
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