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Energy Blast – May 5, 2010

Russian environmentalists are warning homegrown companies to tighten safety measures if they wish to avoid a similar ecological catastrophe to that currently besieging the Gulf of Mexico.  Transeft’s dogged determination to press on with the Baltic Pipeline System-2 (that would bypass Belarus) is apparently stoking tensions between Moscow and Minsk.  Meanwhile President Lukaschenko is receiving Venezuelan supplies with open arms.  Transneft has said that Ukraine’s increase in crude transit fees this year was ‘unjustified.‘   Apparently Russia is in no hurry to execute its possible plan to merge Gazprom and Naftogaz Ukrainy.  ‘Putin offset the discount for Ukraine at the expense of budget revenue’:  how much deals with Ukraine cost the Russian taxpayer, in an op-ed in the Moscow Times.  TNK has refused a proposition from Gazprom to jointly manage the Kovykta gas field; the company says it will go ahead with plans to sell.  There is an interview with WWF on Reuters: the organization argues that Arctic exploration could have devastating effects.  UAE is, this report suggests, looking for ways to challenge Russian hegemony in Europe.  Is Russia profiting from European attention being diverted by Greece to consolidate its assets?  Bulgaria has suspended construction of its second nuclear power plant until it finds a new investor to complete the project.