Journal of Energy & Natural Resources Law - February 2013

Journal of Energy & Natural Resources Law articles are now available online to members of SEERIL (Section on Energy, Environment, Natural Resources and Infrastructure Law). To access the articles in this issue, you will need to sign in using your IBA username and password. Access login details


 

 Commentary

Book Reviews

 


Challenges of Mining Policy and Regulation in Central Asia: the Case of the Kyrgyz Republic
Tuula Honkonen

The Central Asian Republic of Kyrgyzstan has rich mineral resources, but less prominent natural resources policy and regulation in place. The impediments to sustainable mining policy include, inter alia, high environmental risks from mining activities, past bad legacies of the mining industry in the country, social problems related to mining, poor governance practices and economic pressures. This article seeks to analyse the role of these factors in the development and implementation of mining policy and regulation in Kyrgyzstan. It concludes that the government has considerable work to do in the practical implementation of its natural resources policy and in the reform of the mining regulation.

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Oil, Energy Poverty and Resource Dependence in West Africa
Morgan Bazilian, Ijeoma Onyeji, Peri-Khan Aqrawi, Benjamin K Sovacool, Emmanuel Ofori, Daniel M Kammen and Thijs Van de Graaf

The new rush to discover and exploit hydrocarbon resources in West Africa, and particularly in the Gulf of Guinea, has raised hopes in the affected countries for new petroleum wealth and economic development. This article therefore assesses the macroeconomic and governance implications of the recent oil and gas rush in West Africa. Clearly, sound management of the resource revenues will be crucial in national efforts to tackle poverty and promote socio-economic development. While there is a large body of literature available on the issues and best practices related to oil and gas resource management and the design of associated institutions and financial mechanisms, the article fills two gaps. First, while Nigeria and Angola have received ample attention, this article focuses on some smaller countries in the Gulf of Guinea that have only recently emerged as oil and gas producers, such as Liberia, Niger and Sierra Leone. Secondly, it highlights implications for two major socio-economic characteristics of these emerging resource-rich states: (1) energy poverty; and (2) agricultural dependence and lock-in on single crops. The early evolution of institutions to manage the newfound revenues is found to be critical to long-term prosperity or instability. A legacy of beneficial or problematic social impact of new resources hinges on the success in using the new petroleum resources to establish an ‘enabling environment’ where resource wealth is seen across society as a means to build stable institutions, reduce social and economic inequality and drive national prosperity.

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Disclosure of Payments under the US Dodd-Frank Act: the ‘Resource Extraction Rule’
Celia R Taylor

Tucked into the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act are several provisions having nothing to do with financial regulation. One of these ‘miscellaneous’ provisions required the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to implement rules requiring publicly traded resource extractive industry companies to disclose payments made to foreign governments. In August 2012, the SEC adopted final rules to achieve that purpose. In October 2012, the US Chamber of Commerce, as part of a coalition of business and other interests, filed suit to block the implementation of the rules. This article explains the contents of the resource extraction rule and the legal challenge levied against it.

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Grid Collapse of July 2012: Challenges of an Evolving Indian National Grid
Amit Kapur and Deepeika Kalia

In its evolution from a state-owned single buyer model to a vibrant market, the Indian power sector has grown significantly in the last two decades. However, the two instances of grid collapse in July 2012 highlighted the need to deal with the challenges of an integrated national grid regarding governance, capacity enhancement, real-time monitoring of grid operations with effective remedial measures and securing discipline between various generators/suppliers of power and offtakers.

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Consultation, the Way Forward
K H Haddow

The relationship between companies intending to carry out mining projects and communities impacted by those projects is vital. Among the main mechanisms aimed at ensuring a successful relationship with the people affected by a project, consultation is key. The evolution of consultation has been diverse in different parts of the world and involves general consultation rights and obligations. The law and practice for consulting communities used around the globe have been created and regulated in different ways (eg, treaties in Canada, International Labour Organization Convention No 169 in Latin America, etc). The questions this article addresses are: What is the way forward to ensure consultation yields positive results? Is it finding the right definition and framework for consultative engagement? Or is it something else? This article proposes the latter.

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BOOK REVIEWS

John Wils and Ewan Neilson, The Technical and Legal Guide to Global Hydrocarbons, 2011.
John Vercoe

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Carl J Dahlman, The World Under Pressure: How China and India are Influencing the Global Economy and Environment, 2012.
Dr Avnita Lakhani

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