August 30, 2006

Aug. 30. 2006: #1 Orimulsion -&- More

This came from W who would like to set the record straight on New Brunswick and the Orimulsion contract with Venezuela, and more. There is an election coming up in NB Sept. 18 so it is important to point out any information that will update a post of mine on Venezuela, Orimulsion and what happened.

The Facts about Coleson Cove and Orimulsion®


Coleson Cove Generating Station opened in 1976
Generating Stations have a lifetime of 25 - 30 years
If Coleson Cove was not refurbished, it would have closed
Coleson Cove represents 25% of NB Power’s generating capacity
The plant burned heavy fuel oil before the refurbishment
Coleson Cove was one of the worst air-polluters in Canada and the worst in New Brunswick
The Environmental permits for the plant were set to expire in 2005 and would not have been renewed
Coleson Cove has 104 employees and contributes millions of dollars to the New Brunswick economy

The Refurbishment

NB Power spent $750 million to refurbish Coleson Cove
The refurbishment extended the life of the plant for another 25 to 30 years
The Refurbishment included scrubbers and other environmental modifications that dramatically reduced emissions and improved air quality
Without refurbishment, the plant would have closed
NB Power would have had to pay billions to replace the power generated by Coleson Cove if the plant had been shutdown
If we had not refurbished the plant, the security of our electricity supply would have been jeopardised
Coleson Cove burned heavy fuel oil before the refurbishment and burns heavy fuel oil today
Refurbishment maintained 104 good jobs at the plant and creates at least another 16 trucking jobs associated with the scrubbers
At peak construction, the refurbishment employed 700 workers
In addition to the jobs, $220 million was spent on equipment, materials and services
The project was a major boost to the Saint John and New Brunswick economies

Environmental Considerations

Environmental standards at the time of the original construction of the plant were significantly lower than standards today
The plant would not have had its operating permits renewed if it did not meet current environmental standards
As a result of the refurbishment, the plant now operates below the emission limits mandated in its environmental “Approval to Operate”.
As a result of the refurbishment, sulphur dioxide emissions have been cut by 77%, nitrogen dioxide emissions have been reduced by 70% and particulate emissions cut by 75%
These reductions have had a significant and visible impact on the air quality in Southern New Brunswick and elsewhere – no more grey plume across the Saint John skyline


Orimulsion® is a fuel derived from the bitumen (tar-like substance) that occurs naturally in large reserves in Venezuela
Venezuela’s government-owned oil company PDVSA was the world’s sole producer of Orimulsion®
NB Power first began using Orimulsion® under the former McKenna Liberal Government’s watch at the Dalhousie generating station in the mid-1990’s
Orimulsion® was traditionally cheaper than heavy fuel oil, but it is no longer being produced
NB Power had entered in to an agreement with the Venezuelans to burn Orimulsion® at Coleson Cove
The leftist president of Venezuela, Hugo Chávez took control of PDVSA, making radical changes to the company. Subsequently, PDVSA refused to honour a number of international agreements, including their agreement for Coleson Cove
NB Power is suing the Venezuelan oil company to enforce the contract or to be compensated for damages.

Coleson Cove burned heavy fuel oil before the refurbishment and burns heavy fuel oil today
The refurbishment equipped Coleson Cove to burn Orimulsion® as well as heavy fuel oil.

The $2.2 Billion

It is not true that Orimulsion® “cost us $2.2 billion”
Orimulsion® was being sold cheaper than heavy fuel oil, but the Venezuelans are no longer producing it
NB Power wanted to burn Orimulsion® rather than heavy fuel oil at the refurbished plant, but PDVSA has not honoured their agreement
NB Power is taking legal action against the Venezuelans to enforce the agreement

The Liberals are referring to unrealizable savings (the difference in price between what we are and have been burning and Orimulsion® over 25 to 30 years)
The Liberals are arguing that NB Power is responsible for the Venezuelans not honouring their agreement, and have not committed to continuing the lawsuit
Coleson Cove burned heavy fuel oil before the refurbishment and burns heavy fuel oil today

In the past two years, the Lord Government has taken a new governance approach at NB Power by replacing the President, several management executives, and most of the Board of Directors


It is not true that Orimulsion® “cost us $2.2 billion”
Coleson Cove needed to be refurbished because it had reached the end of its useful life and did not meet current environmental standards
Coleson Cove would have closed if it had not been refurbished
Without Coleson Cove we would not have a secure electricity supply and replacing the power would have cost billions
Coleson Cove burned heavy fuel oil before the refurbishment and burns heavy fuel oil today
We have dramatically reduced pollution emanating from Coleson Cove

Harper to address UN next month -- Sept. 21, Scott Deveau, Globe and Mail Update, Aug. 30, 06

Mr. Harper will address members of the top executive levels of business, industry and finance at the Economic Club in New York the day before his UN address. [....]

Ottawa voids Khadr decision -- MacKay again denies Canadian passport despite directive from Federal Court Aug. 39, 06

Foreign Affairs Minister Peter MacKay has refused a passport to Abdurahman Khadr for reasons of national security, even though a federal court judge ordered Ottawa to cease denying the former terrorism suspect his travel document.

“It's not only our national security, it's the national security of other countries,” a senior government official told The Globe and Mail Tuesday. “And it goes to the integrity and the responsibility that goes with carrying a Canadian passport.” [....]

There is more on that infamous family if you link. Good show, Minister McKay! Now, let's turf the lot of them. Let Osama take care of them.

And this is just the beginning ... the devil is in the details ... many details of this leaked NDP document

The world according to the NDP , Steve Janke / Angry in the Great White North / Angry GWN, August 29, 2006

Don't miss reading this one.


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