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Energy Blast – May 4, 2009

EU Energy Commissioner Andris Piebalga has warned against overdramatizing the Russia-Ukraine gas transit issue, following Deputy Prime Minister Igor Sechin’s comments about the risks that remain in guaranteeing gas exports.  Production at Gazprom plummeted to its lowest level in ten years in April, whilst oil extraction continues to mount.  The Guardian examines Russia’s intention to build nuclear power stations in the Arctic to capitalize upon the region’s considerable mineral deposits.  Reuters has a factbox on North Korea’s Yongbyon nuclear arms plant.   Expansion at the world’s biggest known uranium depositor, BHP Billiton Ltd’s Olympic Dam mine in Australia, will be sustained by exports to countries like China, Russia and India.  Kazakhstan should apparently refrain from spending more of its oil revenue to bolster its economy as income flowing into the country’s oil fund decreases.  Britain will soon receive gas shipments from Australia and Siberia for the first time; it is now as economical to ship gas from Australia as from Europe.  Brazil’s Petrobas has begun to extract oil from the offshore Tupi field, with hopes that this deposit (reportedly the second biggest find in twenty years) will change the future of Brazil’s economy.