Benjamin L. Schmitt, is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow and Project Development Scientist at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, where he focuses on the development of instrumentation and infrastructure for next-generation experimental cosmology facilities at the South Pole. From 2015-2019 Benjamin served as European Energy Security Advisor at the U.S. Department of State where he advanced policy engagement vital to the energy and national security interests of the Transatlantic community, with a focus on supporting Ukraine and other nations along NATO’s Eastern Flank facing Russian malign energy activities. Benjamin has been an invited lecturer on European energy security and horizonal energy technologies for the Harvard Ukraine Research Institute and Harvard Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies and continues to publish energy security analysis, most recently with the Harvard International Review, Natural Gas World, and the Atlantic Council. Schmitt regularly provides expert transatlantic security policy commentary for both print and television media, including with the New York Times, Foreign Policy, the Daily Beast, Voice of America, Germany’s Bild Zeitung, and Ukraine’s Kyiv Post, and Segodnya. Benjamin is the current Amicus Poloniae Award laureate, a recognition by the Government of the Republic of Poland for outstanding efforts to promote development of cooperation between the Republic of Poland and the United States of America, and has received both Superior and Meritorious Honor Awards from the U.S. Department of State. Before entering government, Schmitt served as a NASA Space Technology Research Fellow while pursuing doctoral research at the University of Pennsylvania, focusing on direct imaging of the Cosmic Microwave Background, for which he received both M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in experimental physics. Schmitt has also previously served as a U.S. Fulbright Research Fellow to the Max-Planck-Institute for Nuclear Physics in Heidelberg, Germany.
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY Since its announcement in 2015, Russia’s proposed Nord Stream Two natural gas pipeline has remained the infrastructure project posing the largest single threat to the energy and national