Energy Blast – March 10, 2011

Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has apparently ordered Energy Minister Sergei Shmatko to build a plant that could transform natural gas into a form in which it could be transported via tanker.  Would such a plan make the South Stream pipeline obsolete? The Moscow Times talks to an analyst who suggests that it wouldn’t make sense to implement both projects.  Could Novatek’s agreement with Total SA to build a $20 billion Arctic gas-export plant in Russia’s Yamal region challenge Gazprom’s dominance, asks Bloomberg? (Seems doubtful, given that the deal has Vladimir Putin’s seal.) Zimbabwe’s Energy Minister has been detained for questioning on undisclosed charges.