Otjomuise – After years of declining interest and tightening government regulations, the Union’s fossil fuel industry may soon experience a new lease on life as the European invasion of Iraq and anticipations of long-term systemic risk in the Middle East drive up fossil fuel prices.
This market shift poses difficult questions for the Otjomuise, Kavango, and Shona People’s Republics, who house much of the Union’s oil and gas industry and have a long and complex relationship with the sector. While the Shona People’s Republic has enjoyed a degree of economic success only surpassed by some of the southern Republics, both Otjomuise and Kavango have historically remained among the least developed constituent states of the UAPR.
The Kavango People’s Republic has previously turned to fossil fuel production as a way to
fund development, a decision which led to the Okavango Environmental Crisis in the 21st century. Production in Kavango has continued even amidst ongoing efforts to restore the Okavango Delta’s unique wetlands. In Otjomuise, the oil and gas sectors are far less politically fraught, as major operations are conducted in deep water fields up to hundreds of kilometers away from the coast. Even so, the industry here has been no less derided by environmental groups.
The importance of the oil and gas industry in the Union has declined over the past century as many aspects of life have turned to alternative sources of energy and government regulations in the aftermath of the Okavango disaster have limited further development with the aim of a full phaseout. Even so, fossil fuels continue to play an important role in a variety of industrial applications, and while personal automobiles have undergone near complete vehicle electrification, other areas have yet to catch up.