Wednesday, March 30, 2016

There is little Canadian interest in the Rover (or Nexus) gas pipeline

Frank Zaski posted this to FERC this morning. Many of the same arguments can be used against Nexus – even more potent ones – such as over half of Nexus capacity is destined for Canada, costs are higher (see below), they are only 55% to 66% subscribed and an anchor shipper (Chesapeake) is almost bankrupt, Energy Transfer is already subsidizing them. 

There is little Canadian interest in the Rover gas pipeline.

CANADA is a major destination for Rover. It appears virtually all the gas they plan to ship thru Michigan and the Market Segment is destined for Canada and Dawn. However, there does not appear to be much Canadian interest in Rover gas primarily because its delivered COST will be higher and many fear the strong potential for stranded costs being passed on to ratepayers.

In the most recent Ontario Energy Board (OEB) Natural Gas Market Review (February 2016), a number of Ontario organizations voiced their concerned with Rover (and Nexus) plans to ship gas to Dawn.
TransCanada stated:
Transportation paths from Marcellus/Utica via the Niagara, Chippawa and Waddington, New York interconnect points are more cost effective for Ontario consumers than Rover/Dawn.

The landed cost of gas into the Enbridge EDA (Toronto) would be lower from Niagara ($4.90 $CAD/GJ) and Waddington ($5.30) than from Vector ($5.55), Rover ($5.73) or Nexus ($5.82).

Firm contracts for gas supply from New York to Ontario through Niagara and Chippawa will rise to nearly 1.1 Bcf/d in the winter of 2016/17. TransCanada expects to be able to service this reversal of flow for only $30 million.

The flow reversal is proceeding with Waddington (NY) shipments to Ontario expected in November of 2017. This reversal of flow will also be at low cost.

Western Canadian (WCSB) gas will continue to flow to Ontario thru the TransCanada Mainline, Great Lakes Gas Transmission and Alliance pipeline systems.
As in the US, Canadian gas supplies are at very high levels and prices very low.

CANADIAN BUSINESS ASSOCIATIONS representing industrial gas users, property owners, power producers and manufactures write in Canadian OEB filings that they basically DON’T WANT ROVER GAS:
Associations are concerned that the Dawn Parkway Expansion Application revenues at current rates did not support the investment and that SIGNIFICANT GAS RATE INCREASES will result.

Associations want to avoid “burdening pipeline builds” for the 40 – 50 year life of a pipeline and the potential to pay for stranded assets. They recommend lower cost NY pipeline alternatives, market based, non-facility solutions (such as displacement) and investing in technology to cut gas usage and GHG. 

The associations firmly believe Canadian regulators will act to reduce GHG and natural gas consumption. “Ontario is likely at or very close to peak gas consumption.” (In Canada, natural gas is seen as a contributor to GHG gas emissions and not as a solution - as in the US.)

Rover claims they are FULLY SUBSCIBED to ship 1.3 Bcfd to Dawn thru Vector. However, Vector’s capacity is only 1.3 Bcfd and Nexus also plans to ship (.76 Bcfd) thru Vector as well. How can these companies ship over 2.0 Bcfd thru a 1.3 Bcfd capacity pipeline?
The stated capacity of Rover’s Market Segment pipeline north of Defiance is 1.3Bcfd. If all of this gas is destined for Canada, then apparently no gas is planned for Michigan customers. No real Michigan customers were identified in FERC filing, and Michigan’s Consumers Energy (CMS) stated that Rover did not meet their requirements.
It appears Rover is not fully subscribed and has contracted for only .9 Bcfd capacity on Vector.
Canada does not need this much extra gas – it is far more gas than what currently flows to Canada thru Michigan and New York today.  

FLAT ELECTRIC DEMAND: The Ontario grid operator sees flat 18-month electric demand thru 2017.  950 MW of wind and 140 MW of solar capacity will be added during this period.
Quebec already gets 99% of its electricity from renewable sources (mostly hydro). 

Except for a 100% ethane plant in Sarnia, no new petrochemical plants are planned for Eastern Canada.

There is little potential to ship Rover gas to the US and Canadian East  Coasts or for LNG export. US East Coast pipelines are destined to supply those US states, and for the few US and Canadian LNG export plants possible, they already have designated East Coast pipelines. No LNG plant north of Maryland has received financial approval.

Rover cannot claim new sources or new markets. Considerable Marcellus and Utica gas is already flowing to Eastern Canada thru Michigan and especially the economical way thru New York. These existing pipelines provide gas at lower cost, thru multiple locations and without Rover’s environmental degradation.

Building Rover will negatively impact, if not destroy, over 9,000 acres of US forests, farmland, wetlands and other property. This is in addition to intimidating thousands of property owners.

Rover’s environmental degradation far outweighs any benefits to Canada or Michigan.  

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Water Pollution Caused by Industrial Cattle Farms - Open Letter by John Klein, Lime Lake resident

Bruce Washburn  - CAFO Staff
Michigan Department of Environmental Quality

The spring of 2016 is now upon us. Spreading of CAFO waste will soon begin and our waters, both above and below ground, are once again being attacked.

I sent a report to you and the MDEQ late last summer that reported the finding of cyanobacteria and microcystin in the waters of Lime Lake in Wright Township of Hillsdale County. DNA tracking for Bovine resulted positive in the DNA sampling. (Which by the way Bruce, deer are not part of the Bovine family as you stated last November in our meeting. Whitetail deer are a member of the Cervidae family.)

As you well know as stated in the report I sent, there is only one real source of the Bovine DNA in the Lime Lake watershed. There is the CAFO located about ½ mile uphill from Lime Lake. I believe this problem needs to be addressed before Lime Lake becomes the Lake Erie or Grand Lake St. Mary's in Ohio. And that is not to overlook the possibility of swine waste also entering the watershed as there is a swine CAFO also in the watershed.

I stated at our meeting that there is an opportunity here to eliminate the CAFO waste entering Lime Lake, both from field applications of  CAFO waste, spray irrigation of CAFO waste and release of the stormwater pond which may contain high levels of phosphorous. I even offered to partner with the MDEQ to solve this issue through testing and possibly some financial help. 

I have not heard from you and therefore feel that this problem has followed the same protocol that MDEQ has been using since 2011. And that is to deny that there is a problem and hope it will go away. In this case, I assure you it will not go away.

MDEQ ignored obvious warnings in Flint and the problem only escalated. I strongly feel that this is the  case here in our rural area. We know surface and groundwater have been contaminated all over the country from CAFO waste disposal practices, even from those practices that are not violating any law. We can no longer ignore the obvious warnings that current practices will provide very bad results. Our health and health of future generations is at stake.

Everyone leaves a legacy. The current MDEQ Drinking Water Division has already embedded its legacy in the Flint tragedy under the abysmal guidance of Governor Snyder and former MDEQ head Dan Wyant. I hope that you and those MDEQ staff that monitor CAFOs would like to leave a better legacy. 

I believe it's time for MDEQ to step up to the plate and acknowledge that CAFO waste is a danger to both surface and groundwater. It's time that the safety and health of real people wins over economic development.  It's time to begin aggressive stream testing for e.coli and dissolved reactive phosphorous. It's time to require groundwater monitoring. It's time.

I would like to know if you or any members of the MDEQ have any plans to address this Lime Lake problem and the problem as a whole.

John Klein
Lime Lake resident

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Dear Future Generations: Sorry

Bayer and Syngenta pesticides endanger tens of thousands in Punjab (India)

ECCHR demands investigations by FAO and WHO

“Foreign companies come with their pesticides and say they will double production. They do not think about the harms to human beings in the country,” a farmer reported when being interviewed as part of a survey carried out on the use of pesticides in Punjab (India) in March 2015. The farmer’s testimony is part of a video on possible legal action on highly hazardous pesticides (HHPs).

Read the entire story clicking on the below link:

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

EPA Decides to Ignore Citizen Comments about Savoy's Injection Well Permit

The entire file can be downloaded in PDF format here.
I am considering appealing against this decision within the next 3 weeks.