Running Estimate 10 - Domestic Russian Perceptions: Winter is Coming-Energy Warfare

This Running Estimate…
• Surveys reveal that Russian domestic support for the protracted war with Ukraine is declining and concern is growing.
• Russia often uses its vast oil and gas resources as leverage to exploit global crises—such as pandemic outbreaks,
wars, economic meltdowns, energy crises, etc., including those of its own making—to assert, maintain, and grow
its regional influence.
• Moscow has targeted Ukrainian power-generating facilities and networks but is unlikely to break the Ukrainian
will to fight.
• Europe’s past failure to invest in resilient energy systems—while restructuring its energy architecture to meet its
climate goals—created a vulnerability that Russia willingly exploited to advance its geopolitical interests.
• European efforts to tap alternative energy suppliers, and invest in measures to mitigate hardships on citizens,
are rapidly reducing its dependence on Russian energy and probably will replace a cornerstone of its economic
• Russia can likely cover its expenses for several years, but without a captive European energy market, it has to rely
on other customers who have ready alternative suppliers and may use that position to leverage Russia.