Oil production will have low risks to marine life – EIA

first_img…maintains low probability of oil spill reaching coastLiza Phase 2By Jarryl BryanThe results from the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) into the Liza Phase  2 development project has almost cleared ExxonMobil’s subsidiary from the presumption that its operations will cause damage to Guyana’s wildlife and the environment – that is, pending an independent assessment.The report’s findings are that damage will be “negligible to minor” when it comes to various categories. That is, save for damage to marine mammals, which the report does find will be moderate.According to the report, which was commissioned by Esso Exploration and Production Guyana Limited (EEPGL), observations before and after the issuance of the Environmental permit show that large members of the cetacean family (particularly whales) rarely appear South of the Stabroek Block.The report states, “marine mammals have the potential to be impacted by two types of sound from planned project activities…Continuous sound from vessels and machinery operating in the (Project Development Area (PDA)) and comparatively louder, shorter-duration impulse sound from the Vertical Seismic Profiling (VSP) and pile driving.”“Both the continuous sound and impulse sound sources would be loud enough to cause injury in the immediate vicinity of the source,” the report acknowledges, but adds that this would have no effect within approximately 10 metres of the vessels, 75 metres from the VSP, and approximately 1400 metres from the driven piles. The piles are driven at depths of more than 4920 feet.Even with those risks, however, the report pointed out the premise that marine mammals actively avoid these sounds because of the physical discomfort. It adds that mid frequency hearing mammals generally stay 700 metres away. The low frequency mammals, it says, avoid that portion of water by 1400 metres.“Both categories of cetaceans would be expected to avoid these areas for the duration of the pile-driving activity. Low frequency cetaceans (LFC) species, including many of the larger baleen whales and dolphins, and some mid frequency cetaceans (MFC) species, including toothed whales, will naturally remain outside of the area of potential effect because it will be deeper than their deepest recorded dive depths,” the report states.According to the report, species like Sperm Whales have been known to dive approximately 4000 feet in tropical and subtropical waters. But the report states that even if they met depths that would expose them to injury, they physiologically could not remain there for sufficient periods.Marine turtlesThe report states that marine turtles could be impacted by planned project activities, but that the impact is negligible to minor. It states that turtles, which are reptilian, are not as sensitive to underwater sound as mammals.“Marine turtles have been detected at a much lower rate than marine mammals prior to and since the Project was permitted, which suggests that the density of marine turtles offshore is comparatively low. Preliminary tracking data from a marine turtle telemetry study indicate that individual turtles may nest multiple times a season at Shell Beach.”The report adds that “during the period between nesting events, they generally remain close to the nesting beaches, which would reduce the probability of their encountering Project vessel traffic moving within the PDA or between the PDA and shore base in Guyana.”Oil spillsThe assessment also takes into account unplanned events, such as hydrocarbon spill, discharge of untreated wastewater from the FPSO, vessel strike of a marine mammal, marine turtle, or seabird; vessel collision; and onshore vehicular accident.“An unplanned event is defined as an event that is not planned to occur as part of the project, but that could potentially occur. Since these events are not planned, they are evaluated using methods different from those used for planned events, specifically taking into consideration the likelihood that an unplanned event will occur.”“EEPGL has identified 14 spill scenarios, including spills of different types of hydrocarbons (like) crude oil, marine diesel, fuel oil, lubricating oil, with several being applicable for spills at the shore base and on vessels in the Demerara River estuary (like) from a supply vessel) or in the Atlantic Ocean – eg, from a well, drillship, supply vessel, tanker, FPSO. The largest of these scenarios considers a loss of well control incident at the seafloor, releasing 20,000 barrels of oil per day for 30 days.”But the report noted previous findings that there is a low probability of an oil spill reaching the shoreline, in addition to the five to 15 days timeline for oil the reach the shore. It also noted its oil spill contingency plans. These plans, the company said, include its proper preparation of wells, inspected well control equipment, an Oil Spill Response Plan that sets out the response chain to an oil spill.“The OSRP clearly delineates the responsibilities of each entity that would take part in a response and describes how EEPGL would mobilise both its own resources and those of its oil spill response contractors, as well as notifying the Government of Guyana with respect to mobilising its resources,” the report states.Last month, Government had announced that an international firm, Ramboll US Corporation, will be contracted at a cost of $40 million to review the EIA. That sum will be footed by EEPGL, seeking environmental authorisation for the second phase of its Lisa project.It is understood that the Liza Phase 1 development project will produce about half the oil in the Liza field, Stabroek block. The Liza Phase 2 development project will produce the other half.last_img read more

Why Evander Kane’s contract could haunt Sharks GM this summer

first_imgDENVER — Evander Kane’s biggest fan in the second half of the 2018-19 season might be the guy sitting in the general manager’s suite at SAP Center.Doug Wilson will be negotiating potential new contracts for Joe Pavelski and Timo Meier this year and you can bet that the seven-year, $49 million deal Kane signed last summer will be mentioned more than a few times by their agents.Kane’s $7 million annual average salary is now the benchmark for contract talks in Sharks territory.The emphasis on …last_img read more

NFL Draft: Five things to watch for 49ers on Day 2

first_img[vemba-video id=”van/sc/2019/04/26/bang_70cd44d6-07f6-4330-bb3c-08cac4a615bd”]Cam Inman and Dieter Kurtenbach talk about how the San Francisco 49ers’ first choice was a no-brainerSANTA CLARA — While defensive end Nick Bosa filled the 49ers’ biggest need with his No. 2 overall selection Thursday, other holes exist, and here are five things to watch in Friday’s second and third rounds:1. Wide receiver: A slew of wide receivers should be available when the 49ers go back on the clock four picks …last_img read more

Memories of Mandela

first_imgNelson Mandela, a towering figure who was revered by many, touched an incredible number of lives. (Image: Nelson Mandela Foundation) • Sello Hatang CEO Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory +27 11 547 5600 www.nelsonmandela.org • The world pays tribute to a great man • On this day 50 years ago: Mandela arrives at Robben Island • Nelson Mandela’s life on the run, captured • Liliesleaf remembered 50 years on • Nelson Mandela: A final goodbye before life goes onMelissa Jane CookNelson Mandela, a towering figure who was revered by many, touched an incredible number of lives. When he died the world went into mourning and there was a dreaded sense that one of the last men who stood for peace, justice and equality had been returned to the Earth.Condolences poured in from around the world. Dignitaries and diplomats, prime ministers and presidents, kings and queens, domestic worked and teachers, lawyers and children came together to grieve and pay respects for one of the most loved of all world leaders of the 20th century.Rick Stengel, former managing editor of Time and collaborator with Mandela on the latter’s 1993 autobiography, Long Walk to Freedom, wrote: “[Mandela]… has become a kind of fairy tale: he is the last noble man, a figure of heroic achievement.”What is most notably remembered by many was his generosity of his time with people. Everyone wanted to meet him, even for just a snatch of conversation or a handshake. Many sought a philosophical conversation or a stirring debate. And he unstintingly gave attention to many, leading to many stories told after his death.In December 2013, Time Magazine published anecdotes from people who knew him best. Jessie Duarte is today the deputy secretary-general of the African National Congress, South Africa’s ruling party, but she was Mandela’s personal assistant between 1990 and 1994, before he entered parliament.“He always made his own bed, no matter where we travelled,” she recalled. “I remember we were in Shanghai, in a very fancy hotel, and the Chinese hospitality requires that the person who cleans your room and provides you with your food, does exactly that. If you do it for yourself, it could even be regarded as an insult. So in Shanghai I tried to say to him, ‘Please don’t make your own bed, because there’s this custom here.’ And he said, ‘Call them, bring them to me.’“So I did. I asked the hotel manager to bring the ladies who would be cleaning the room, so that he could explain why he himself has to make his own bed, and that they not feel insulted. He didn’t ever want to hurt people’s feelings. He never really cared about what great big people [thought] of him, but he did care about what small people thought of him,” she said.Watch Jessie Duarte speak about Nelson MandelaHumanitarian heartSouth African photographer Steve Bloom, whose father Harry Bloom was a political activist, remembered: “During the 1950s my parents, who were anti-apartheid activists, knew Nelson Mandela. I remember the story he told them about the occasion he saw a white woman standing next to her broken car in Johannesburg. He approached her and offered to help. After fiddling with the engine he fixed the car. Thankful for his help, she offered to pay him sixpence. ‘Oh no, that’s not necessary,’ he said, ‘I am only too happy to help.’ ‘But why else would you, a black man, have done that if you did not want money?’ she asked quizzically. ‘Because you were stranded at the side of the road,’ he replied.”Neville Alexander, a political activist who spent 10 years imprisoned on Robben Island alongside Mandela, described his first meeting with the leader: “I was impressed mainly by the warmth and the genuine interest, which was a feature that, subsequently I discovered, is very much part of the man and something which I also must admit now, I learned from him… to give your full attention to your interlocutor, and really take notice of what people are saying, listen to them carefully. In his case, there was a spontaneous, charismatic exuding of warmth. That’s probably the most important, most vivid memory I have of our first meeting.”In hidingWolfie Kodesh, who hid Mandela for nearly eight weeks in 1961 in his flat in a white suburb of Johannesburg, also spoke of his memories: “We had a discussion and an argument about who [was] going to sleep where. I had a tiny flat… and I had a bed and I had a camp stretcher in a cupboard. So when I brought out the camp stretcher, I said to him, ‘Well, I’ll sleep on the camp stretcher. You sleep on the bed because you are six-foot something, I am five-foot something. So the stretcher is just right for me.’ No, he wasn’t going to have that. He hadn’t come there to put me out, and we had a bit of a talk about that and… it was arranged, and I would sleep on the bed.”Stengel, who spent almost two years with Mandela working on Long Walk to Freedom, said: “In 1994, during the presidential election campaign, Mandela got on a tiny propeller plane to fly down to the killing fields of [KwaZulu-Natal] and give a speech to his Zulu supporters. I agreed to meet him at the airport, where we would continue our work after his speech. When the plane was 20 minutes from landing, one of its engines failed. Some on the plane began to panic.“The only thing that calmed them was looking at Mandela, who quietly read his newspaper as if he were a commuter on his morning train to the office. The airport prepared for an emergency landing, and the pilot managed to land the plane safely. When Mandela and I got in the backseat of his bulletproof BMW that would take us to the rally, he turned to me and said, ‘Man, I was terrified up there!’”last_img read more