Author Biography

Since 2000, Peter Johnston has been a Defense Scientist conducting Strategic Analysis for the Centre for Operational Research and Analysis, a part of Defense Research and Development Canada. Previously, he was an infantry officer in the Canadian Forces, gaining experience in operational and non-operational environments. He holds an M.A. in War Studies from the Royal Military College of Canada. He has conducted energy security research for seven years, examining topics including the link between oil and conflict in Africa, nationalization, the threat posed by terrorism on oil and gas infrastructure, Arctic energy geopolitics, and energy security more broadly. Mr. Johnston is leading a three-year project examining contemporary energy security to determine its implications for militaries. He has been published in conference proceedings and journals including Baltic Rim Economies and the Journal of Military and Strategic Studies. He has presented his research in North America and Europe.



Subject Area Keywords

Development and security, Economics, Energy security, International security, Natural resources and security, Strategy


This article highlights the security impact of oil nationalization, develops and analyzes four energy security scenarios, and suggests options to reduce the potential negative impact of oil nationalization. In addition to the use of oil as a weapon, nationalization of oil can also lead to competition for scarce resources among states, facilitate the funding of terrorists or insurgents, contribute to destabilizing regional arms races, influence intra-state conflict, and sustain antagonistic political agendas.