Monday, December 09, 2013

#NoKXL Largest private sector union in Canada: No Northern Gateway pipeline

PhotobucketThe Northern Gateway pipeline would deliver 525,000 barrels of Alberta oil to a tanker terminal in Kitimat, on the Pacific coast of British Columbia. The proposed pipeline route goes thru First Nations lands. The First Nations and the Yinka Dene have been solidly opposed to to the pipeline proposal and have refused to let the pipeline go thru their land.

UNIFOR, is the same union that recently called for a stop to gas and oil fracking in Canada. From

On Thursday the union vowed to join First Nations in protesting the project if it were to proceed.

“We signed in solidarity, so we’ll be there in solidarity to support them,” McGarrigle told the Globe and Mail. “We support lawful and peaceful protest. We know what solidarity means: It means you stand together with a sense of purpose. We have a saying in the labour movement: We’ll be there one day longer.”

UNIFOR has more than 300,000 members including the Canadian Auto Workers, Communications, Energy, and Paperworkers Union of Canada as well as the oil and gas industry. The B.C.’s Teachers’ Federation, 41,000 strong and the  Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment also signed the Save the Fraser declaration:

 an accord that aims to ban all tar sands projects from First Nations territory and from the ocean migration routes of the Fraser River salmon. In a speech, Gavin McGarrigle, Unifor’s B.C. director, said a “good jobs revolution,” with opportunities in clean energy and expansions in public transit, would bring better opportunities to B.C. than the pipeline would.

The issue for Enbridge is that they can't get to Kitimat with a pipeline without going thru First Nations and Yinka Dene lands, effectively stalling the pipeline for the last few years. But these recent developments indicate that both sides are acquiring allies. The British Colombian Premiere has allied with the tar sands, while these labor unions have aligned with the First Nations.

"When on dangerous ground maneuver, when on deadly ground fight".

Some of you may recognize the Sun Tzu quote, it applies to all of the tar sand pipeline fights. With the Keystone XL in the center and the Northern Gateway to the west, in the past the effort to stop the tar sands development can be thought of a 2 front war. With the west and central fronts stalled, the tar sands partners are maneuvering to the east, resurrecting 2 previously shelved pipeline proposals. One of those proposals are shown on the map below. They have opened up a 3rd front.

PhotobucketThe Tar Sands are land locked, if the tar sands partners want to export the majority of the proposed 8 million bpd of tar sands production, then their goal will be to build 8 million bpd of pipeline capacity. Opposition groups have stalled nearly 4 mbp of pipeline proposals. this puts tremendous pressure on the tar sands developers, who have built only 2 pipelines over 50 years. Even shipping by rail car doesn't relieve the pressure, tar sands removal projects are stalled at current production.

To make matters worse the tar sands project consumes tremendous amounts of energy, the Mackenzie Valley gas pipeline proposal is an idea that dates to the 1970's and still hasn't been built. Significant trillions of cubic feet of natural gas sits undeveloped in Alaska with no way to move it.

TransCanada and Exxon Mobil are partnered in the Alaska gas pipeline proposal that will directly link nat gas production in the North Slope of Alaska thru Alberta to the US mid west. This project may be the same as the Denali proposal, and was reintroduced to the Senate in Feb, of 2011. There are also at least 2 variations. The map below shows the Mackenzie Valley and Alaskan Hiway natural gas pipeline proposals.

 photo all_pipes_large.jpg

The Alberta tar sands project may be at a crossroads, they lack access to the natural gas they need to fully expand production, and they lack the pipeline capacity to even expand capacity from current production.

And UNIFOR just drew a line in the snow......

More to read from my Tar Sands series:

Keystone East: Doubling down? Or admitting KXL defeat?

Pipeline bottleneck may force slowdown of Tar Sands

Tar Sands to consume all conventional natural gas reserves in Canada and Alaska

Tar Sands: Muskeg Destruction is more than a methane GHG bomb

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Roger D Fox: Golf Course resume.

Summary of Golf Course Experience:

-Installation of drain systems.
-Pesticide, fertilizer applications & calibration.
-Personnel supervision.
-Equipment operation.
-Turf establishment/cultivation/renovation.
-Maintenance & repair of irrigation systems.
-Use of computerized irrigation (COPS by Buckner). 
-Reconstruction of tees & bunkers.
-Personnel training, team building.
-Proposal development for new capital expenditures.
-Course set up, pins, tee markers and marking.
-Maintenance of clay tennis courts. 

-Takes big picture forward thinking approach to solve issues and leverage opportunities utilizing strong intuitive and analytical capabilities.
-Excellent interpersonal and communication skills with high degree of customer service focus.
-Uses persistent “does what it takes” course of action and commitment to achieve results.
-Strong ethics (integrity, trust and respect for people on a consistent basis).
-Expertise in building and retaining talent by coaching and mentoring skilled staff.

Job experience:

1992: Glen Ridge Country Club, Glen Ridge, New Jersey.
Position: Assistant Golf Course Superintendent.
Daily course set up, pesticide applications.

1991: Essex County Country Club, West Orange, New Jersey.
Position: Assistant Golf Course Superintendent.
Daily course set up.
Implemented deep and infrequent irrigation & monitored improved root depth.

1989-1990: Brae Burn Country Club, Purchase, New York.
Position: Assistant Golf Course Superintendent.
Managed daily operations for absentee Superintendent.
Advanced proposal for 2nd GC maintenance building.
Course set up, course marking with paint.

1988: Wheatley Hills Country Club, East Williston, New York.
Position: Second Assistant Golf Course Superintendent.
Course set up for Long Island Amateur.

1986-1987: Nissequoge Country Club, St. James, New York.
Position: Assistant Golf Course Superintendent.
Spearheaded renovation of tees improving member satisfaction.

1985: Rock Hill Country Club, Manorville, New York.
Position: Foreman.
Daily course set up.

Tournament experience:

*1979: Greens mower mechanic, W.U.I. LPGA, Meadowbrook CC, Westbury, New York.
*1988: Long Island Amateur, local qualifier for US Amateur, Wheatley Hills CC, New York.
*1989-1990: USF&G Club Pro Skins Qualifier, Brae Burn CC, New York.
*1990: Local qualifier, US Open, Brae Burn CC, New York.

Education and past professional affiliations:

*Graduated Rutgers 2 yr Turf program, Class President, 1989.
*Class B member MetGCSA, 1989-1992.
*Associate Member Hudson Valley GCSA, 1990-1992.
*Member Executive Board, Rutgers Turfgrass Alumni Association, 1989-1992.


Sunday, June 17, 2012

Berkeley National Laboratory: Wind is cheapest, less than 7 cents/Kwh

It should be common knowledge that the prices of solar and wind power have been trending down and have been competitive for a few years. Now it appears that wind power is the cheapest electricity available on the planet. A study released in December of 2011 indicates that the cost to generate of wind power is between 3.3 cents per kWh and 6.5 cents per kWh, I live in New Jersey and we pay about 18 or 19 cents. At a time when the Atlantic Wind Connection looks to start construction of a 350 mile long HVDC trunk line 15 to 20 miles off the east coast, between NJ and Virginia, that would support 1750 4Mw turbines... and HVDC projects in the North Sea are starting to roll, capital is starting to respond to the price points of wind power. Last August ABB signed a 1 billion dollar contract to provide undersea HVDC transmission systems for the Dutch-German transmission system operator TenneT:
Scheduled to be operational in 2015, this offshore network will help to avoid more than three million tons of carbon dioxide emissions per year by replacing fossil-fuel based generation.
Photobucket Both ABB and Seimens are busy with projects in the North Sea, an area that is similar to the east coast of the US in that both have wide undersea shelfs that are not very deep, and have excellent wind potential. The shallow nature (50-150 ft deep) makes excellent locations to anchor the bases for turbine towers. The UK, Norway, Denmark, Germany and France will eventually be interconnected, and able to share renewable energy, moving electricity from the wind farms in the North Sea long distances to where its needed.

The east coast of North America, from Virginia north to Nova Scotia in Canada has a wide continental shelf with the potential of over 60 gigwatts of wind power generation.


The North Sea, in the lower portion of this graphic also has a wide continental shelf. Here is a map from 1906 that may provide some more detail of the North Sea. The west coast of North America does not have a wide enough continental shelf to support large scale wind turbine development. ABB is also working on the 800 MW Dolwin1 which is scheduled for completion in 2013 and has completed the 400 MW Borwin1 in 2009. Siemens has also established itself as a major player in the North Sea with 4 projects, HelWin2 is scheduled to be completed in 2015, the 864 MW SylWin link to be completed in 2014, the 800 MW BorWin2 and the 576 MW HelWin1 links both scheduled for 2013. The HelWin2 platform will be erected by Heerema Fabrication Group in 75 feet of water.
Tino Vinkesteijn, Chief Commercial Officer Heerema Fabrication Group, says: “This award demonstrates the offshore wind industry’s confidence in our expertise and capabilities to successfully complete EPCI projects in the harsh North Sea environment.
The largest HVDC offshore project in the US that i have heard of is the Atlantic Wind Connection:


The Federal Government in the US has made it clear they support large thinking like the Atlantic Wind Connection, they do not want 20 or 30 separate wind developers building their own grid connections, this would require more environmental impact studies and require connections to the grid that are already robust and able to handle the load generated by the turbines. The AWC will only require 4 landfall points, only 4 environmental impact studies, and 4 grid tie in points, and yet capacity can be increased to 35 gigawatts with a Ultra High Voltage Direct Current cable. AWC expects to start construction on the north leg first, so Jersey will see some good paying wind power jobs hopefully in the coming year.
In fact, our clean wind energy is the cheapest electricity you can buy in some areas!
Following my revelation that George Osborne's Treasury is seeking to slash the subsidies for onshore wind power - the cheapest form of renewable energy - the House of commons select committee on energy and climate change is to investigate.
an LCOE presentation by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) researchers confirmed that wind is now at $33 to $65 per megawatt-hour and falling.
National Renewable Energy Laboratory's Eric Lanz noted, “if existing prototypes and recently commercialized equipment prove viable,” Lantz concluded, “cost reductions are likely to come sooner than we think.” Big money is starting to flow towards renewable projects, expanding Americas energy portfolio, and building the next generation of energy infrastructure. Capital is only just starting to recognize the lower price points of solar and wind. The AWC is slated to cost 5.5 billion dollars and provide jobs, good paying jobs, offshore work can pay 80k to 120 k per year. In the near term expect capital to move in more volume toward wind, and expect solar prices to catch up and pass wind power 5 to 10 years. The US Dept. of Energy has issued a white paper- 20% from wind in 20 years- and provide a very conservative estimate of job creation:


This estimate does not account for the multiplier effect, that the 500k+ jobs means people will spend their money on cars, homes, flat screens etc. With the first commercial scale Solar thermal storage systems being built (Arizona 500Mw) and the first existing wind powered pumped hydro plants (Spain 635 Mw), storage systems are now a reality. As Franklin Roosevelt said in his 4th fireside chat on October 22, 1933
If we cannot do this one way we will do it another. Do it, we will...... I have told you tonight the story of our steady but sure work in building our common recovery. In my promises to you both before and after March 4th, I made two things plain: First, that I pledged no miracles and, second, that I would do my best. I thank you for your patience and your faith. Our troubles will not be over tomorrow, but we are on our way and we are headed in the right direction.

Monday, December 12, 2011

West Coast Unions avoid Federal fines by not officially planning port shut down with Occupy

The International Longshore and Warehouse Union didn't endorse the Occupy shutdown of the port on November 2nd, and it didn't endorse the shutdown on Monday, December 12th. Why?  Basically because if they did endorse the action, it would be like a strike and they wouldn't get paid. That action would open up the Union to the possibility of fines, a Federal judge fined the Union $315,000 for disruptions earlier this year.

What happens is an arbitrator is called to the scene, if the arbitrator declares the terminal unsafe for the Longshoreman to work, they go home for the day, with pay. My stepfather worked as a longshoreman for over 30 years and operated under similar rules.

If a federal judge determines that occupiers are acting on the union’s behalf, President Scott Mason of Local 23 in Tacoma, Washington, said:

“we can be charged $5,000 for every incident.”
From Port and Technology:
“To be clear, the ILWU, the Coast Longshore Division and Local 21 are not coordinating independently or in conjunction with any self-proclaimed organization or group to shut down any port or terminal, particularly as it related to our dispute with EGT in Longview (Wash),” read a statement by the ILWU Coast Committee in November. 

Kari Koch of Occupy Portland said that the Local could be held legally liable if they coordinated the protest with the Union.

We would not be doing this action if we didn’t have any support from the rank and file.

The Portland Occupier put it like this:
While the mainstream media tried to pin Occupy protesters against the Unions, all along, protesters knew that rank-and-file unions members stood in solidarity. Anyone with a basic understanding of how Unions currently operate knows that to maintain their contracts, statements like these are issued in order to avoid conflict. Years of US policies crafted behind doors by ALEC and others have drained much vitality from Unions across the country.
Jared Lorio and organizer from Portland adds the punctuation:

The lack of support from the ILWU] sheds light on the fact that our unions have been hamstrung and made ineffective by laws designed to curtail workers organising for their rights to better pay and conditions in this country.

And that brings us full circle back to the ILWU fight with Grain Terminal Operator EGT in Longview, Washington. EGT has refused to hire Union Labor for its terminal operations and is in a long term fight with the Longshoreman's Union over hiring for all of the grain elevators in the Pacific Northwest.

The 2 Portland terminals on North Marine Ave were shutdown.


Occupy LA.


Protestors with Longshore Union signs.


14th St Oakland. ILWU signs.


Entrance to Seattle terminal blockaded.


Terminal 18 in Seattle.


Trucker blasting air horn in support near berth 55 @ OccupyOakland.


Scott Olsen, center, Marching in Oakland.





Trucks outside Oakland terminal.
Code Pink, Code Pink from @laststarwriter

From twitter, @laststarwriter, who took this picture and told me Code Pink was collecting money for non Union truck drivers in Oakland who would loose a days pay.

Thursday, December 08, 2011

So you want fair taxes for the 1% ?

The US economic system used to be stable, banks didn't fail and jobs were created for those wishing to work.

A system that destroys 20 million jobs for over 3 years is broken. 
A system that cant keep its banks afloat is broken. 
A political system on auction to the highest bidder is broken. 
A system that steals our future is broken. 
A system that destroys families is broken. 
A system that increases income and wealth disparity is broken. 
A system that economically oppresses people is broken.

Whats fair is an economic system thats stable. 
Whats fair is to take the big money out of politics. 
Whats fair is tax policy that creates a stable economy. 
Whats fair is regulations like Glass Steagal that creates a stable banking community.
Whats fair is not stealing our future.


Sunday, December 04, 2011

A Declaration of War on the Big Banks.

Declaring that a state of war exists between the Bank of America, Citibank, JP Morgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Goldman Sachs and other similar institutions (hereby known as "The Banksters"), and the people of the United States and making provisions to prosecute the same.
Whereas the Banksters have committed unprovoked acts of economic terror against the Government and the people of the United States of America:
Therefore be it Resolved by the people of the United States of America in General Assembly gathered,
  That the state of war between the people of the United States and the Banksters which has thus been thrust upon us by their total disregard for the welfare of their country is hereby formally declared;
  That the people will hereby employ their economic, political and social resources, along with their constitutional rights, to carry on a struggle against the Banksters; utilizing boycotts, occupations, foreclosure and eviction prevention actions, civil disobedience and all other consitutional means to bring the fight to their doorsteps; and,
  To bring the conflict to a successful termination, all the resources of the people are hereby pledged; we will not be satisfied until the trillions upon trillions of dollars taken, and the untold human suffering caused, because of the actions of these Banksters, is recompensed, redressed and justice has been served.
The Ninety-Nine Percent

This was originally a part of an article written by jpmassar and published at Daily Kos.