Sunday, August 23, 2015

Do away with coal fired generation? Of course not!

Coal Generated Electricity in Alberta is owned and profited by the cities. You take away that revenue and up goes your taxes; dollar for dollar. 

Coal generated electricity and cement plants are ideal for carbon capture. Will the cities put out the cash to put over the change over? Probably. if the province kicks in the lion's. share and again up go your taxes.

Easy enough to pick on the industry and jump on popular bandwagons but, when you look at how much coin is going to come out of your individual pockets I would say you may become more moderate. 

There are different solutions to CC lets talk about them publicly and look at the costs and how much we, as individuals can afford. 

Saturday, August 15, 2015

analysis: Uganda-Kenya oil pipeline decision to boost region

analysis: Uganda-Kenya oil pipeline decision to boost region

London (Platts)--14 Aug 2015 914 am EDT/1314 GMT

* International oil companies welcome decision
* First oil in Uganda still more than two years away
* Kenya pins hopes on becoming regional oil hub

East Africa's fledgling oil sector has taken a significant step forward after the governments of oil-rich Uganda and Kenya this week finally agreed on the route of an export pipeline that will enable crude from the region to reach international markets for the first time.

Uganda-Kenya oil export routeThe long-awaited decision, which will see the pipeline pass through northern Kenya so that it can also serve Kenya's prospective oil blocks as well as Uganda's own vast reserves, is expected to provide a much-needed boost for both countries and could transform the region into a major oil hub. 

The agreement was welcomed by the main players in the region, including the UK's Tullow Oil, which is developing oil resources in both Uganda and Kenya, and its partner in Kenya, Africa Oil Corp. 

Tullow said it was a "major milestone" and it was looking forward to the development of the significant discovered oil resources in Uganda and Kenya. 

Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni and Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta issued a joint communique earlier this week saying they had agreed on a 1,500 kilometers (930 miles) pipeline that will take the northern route from Hoima in Uganda to Lokichar in Turkana County in Kenya and on to the Kenyan port of Lamu. 

The presidents said the pipeline needed to be "implemented expeditiously, without further delay in commercializing the petroleum resources" as this provides both countries with much needed oil revenues. 

An export pipeline from Uganda to Kenya was one of the region's priorities as the international partners developing Uganda's oil and Kenya's fields said the pipeline was a prerequisite for work to continue. 

France's Total has often suggested that no development work on Uganda's vast resources could begin until the export pipeline agreement was reached. 

Total had no immediate comment on the pipeline route agreement when contacted by Platts. 

Analysts at Morgan Stanley said this decision would provide a necessary boost to oil projects in this region. 

In a note it said the agreed route would "run far closer to Tullow/Africa Oil's South Lokichar licenses" and had significantly less land access issues. 

"The formal project go ahead is being targeted for late-2016/early-2017," the analysts said.

Independent oil operator Africa Oil, which is currently carrying out appraisal work in the South Lokichar basin, welcomed news of the pipeline route and was hoping this could move the project forward.
Keith Hill, President and CEO of Africa Oil, said he was "pleased" that an agreement had been reached on the routing of the export pipeline.

He also said there were encouraging signs from appraisal drilling and extended well testing program in Kenya.

"We believe that there is still significant upside in not only the Lokichar Basin but in new basins yet to be opened and are working with our partner Tullow on a program to unlock this potential," Hill said in a statement.

Landlocked Uganda has found 6.5 billion barrels of oil in the Albertine basin near the border with the Democratic Republic of Congo, but due to constraints relating to infrastructure, logistics and politics, commercial crude production continues to be pushed back due to delays by the government in offering licenses.

Of the three companies involved in Ugandan oil, only China's CNOOC has been given a production license, for the Kingfisher field. Tullow and Total are still waiting.

First oil in Uganda is only expected to start between late 2017 and early 2018, Uganda's energy and minerals minister Irene Muloni told Platts in early June.

Besides the pipeline, Uganda is also developing plans to build a refinery to meet the growing needs of the region, another critical infrastructural project for East Africa.

Uganda awarded the contract to build and operate the refinery to a consortium led by Russia's RT Global Resources earlier this year.

The refinery will be developed in two phases, with initial capacity of 30,000 b/d and then an upgrade to 60,000 b/d in the second phase. The first phase is expected to be completed by early-2018, added Muloni.

Regional oil hub

In Kenya, Tullow and Africa Oil have found 600 million barrels of crude in the onshore South Lokichar basin, with the first discovery made in March 2012.

But first commercial oil in Kenya is still more than five years away.

Security problems from Islamist militancy in the region have also cast a shadow over the developments.

Opponents of the planned pipeline route had cited security concerns in the north, where bandits and Islamist militants carry out attacks periodically.

The two governments also took another important decision this week by agreeing to develop a reverse flow petroleum product pipeline from Mombasa via Eldoret to Kampala capable of transporting imported petroleum products to Uganda and also from the refinery in Uganda to Kenya.

The aim is to limit the use of road tankers to transport fuel.

Kenya also has high hopes of becoming a regional oil hub as it is a key transit point for oil product supply to Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, South Sudan and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

As a result, the Kenyan government is planning to build a new terminal in Mombasa to keep up with rising East African oil products demand.

--Eklavya Gupte,
--Edited by Jeremy Lovell,

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

We are going to hell in a basket! It is much worse than it appears.

An update on the oil glut.
It is about a year ago I posted we would see 20.00 US oil before this Glut was over.

Well, Ruthrs announced yesterday that Cushing OK was paying 19.50 a barrel on its futures.

The previous low as about a month ago at 21.00 per barrel.

It is going to go still lower and stay there for a couple of years is my prediction.  Reason?
In the last week China has announced going into the market place with "new oil"

And in the deprived part of the world, Kenya-Uganda oil new oil pipeline has let it be known they are going to be exporting more.   The new pipeline is costing them 6.5 billion dollars. They are going to want to get that paid for.   This is the area of the world that has anti-theft systems built into their pipelines; where 109 people were killed in the last week in an explosion where they were trying to steal fuel for their improvised homes.

And, Iran!  The state department is very quiet about what they had to give up in their deal with Iran who seem to be very astute dealers.  Iran is capable of 6.5 million barrels output into a glut market.
My guess and its only a guess based on how the US deals.  We will see about 100,000 barrels per day showing up at Cushing further eroding Canadian markets.

Obama is still working on laying 11,500 miles of 36" pipe from the shale in the north to the 5 districts in the US.

If you had any doubt about us needing a Canadian market and a trans Canadian pipeline you should see the picture a little clearer.

It is imperative we gag the traditional environmentalist who for the majority are US funded.
And if it comes to crossing treaty lands we have to start looking for a way to take it away from them at least for the right of way of an essential Canadian livelihood.

Don't count on Harper for anything.  This is not the time to be tucking more gold into corporate pockets.  The contrary; it is time to shut some of these operations down and send a lot of people back to where they came from!   Leave it in the ground is not a bad idea!

Think about voting for a party who has the reputation of looking after the average person.  That sure is not Conservative or Liberal!

Remember  we will have 2 more elections after this one before we start to climb out of this!

Monday, August 03, 2015

Why Mulcair is streaking ahead! An comprehensive insight to Harper.

Why people watching their budgets are also watching Mulcair
Minimum-wage increases, affordable daycare are issues average Canadians care about.
After a scattershot start in Opposition, NDP leader Thomas Mulcair has focussed on pocketbook issues.
By: David Olive Business, Business Columnist, Published on Mon Aug 03 2015
The federal election is more than two months away. Yet it’s already apparent why the NDP has a decent chance of winning it, with issues that turn on household economics.

In a nutshell, NDP leader Thomas Mulcair will run on crowd-pleasing pocketbook issues, including increased CPP payouts to seniors on fixed incomes, affordable daycare, a pay raise for tens of thousands of minimum-wage workers, and a rollback of the seniors’ pension eligibility age to 65, from the 67 years of age imposed by PM Stephen Harper.

Apart from copious attack ads, the Harper playbook isn’t ideally suited to a 2015 election. Many of its policy points lack voter relevance, and some will put him on the defensive. Harper is at his most effective, sadly, when on the offensive, slagging his adversaries — bait that a statesmanlike like Mulcair seldom takes.

Harper is also touting his record of economic stewardship. That could be a tough sell.

Canada’s national debt has increased 27 per cent on Harper’s free-spending watch, or $131 billion. At 6.8 per cent, the jobless rate remains higher than before the Great Recession (it was 6.0 per cent in 2007). And after five consecutive months of negative GDP growth, Canada might be heading into a recession (six months would make it an official recession).

Harper claims Canada is outperforming its G-7 peers in terms of long-term economic vigour. But in the past two years, the U.S. and the U.K. have outperformed Canada in GDP growth and job creation. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) forecasts Canada’s future economic growth rate at 1.5 per cent per year, trailing that of the U.S., Germany, Britain and even Spain, which is currently enduring a severe recession.

Harper is also already trotting out more of his “boutique” tax cuts, which have the ring of genuine help. But they actually affect very few Canadians, in part because Canada’s 4.4 million people living in poverty do not have enough income to benefit from tax breaks.

Past examples of this Tory political “narrowcasting” — appealing to niches of the electorate rather than all voters — are the Harper tax breaks on the purchase of children’s hockey equipment.

Harper was at it again Sunday, Day One of the longest, costliest campaign in modern Canadian history!
(The $375 million tab for Elections Canada alone would pay for 2.5 million affordable housing units.) Harper kicked off the Tory campaign with a pledge of tax breaks for businesses that hire tradespeople.
That is the microscopic approach to job creation long favoured by this government, and a dubious one that in this case would waste $60 million. A tax break won't be the deciding factor for a business owner contemplating an investment in the wages, benefits and training costs of a new hire. But this trivial policy plank does give Harper a talking point with his small-business constituency, extolling the hugely exaggerated role of small business in job creation.

Justin Trudeau, sixth leader in the past 12 years of an underfunded Liberal Party, will struggle to break out of his appearance as the me-too candidate. Trudeau mimics Mulcair in pledging to roll back the retirement eligibility age to 65, and in faulting Harper’s record on job creation.

Minimum-wage increases were once a contentious issue. But today, Mulcair is aligned with popular and business sentiment in calling for them.

In a milestone decision in late July, New York State raised its minimum wage for fast-food workers to $15 (U.S.) an hour by 2018, a stunning 71 per cent increase.

Britain and Germany have recently raised their minimum wages; and Barack Obama and U.S. presidential candidate Hillary Clinton each support minimum-wage hikes. Premier Rachel Notley has committed to raising the Alberta minimum wage to $15 (Cdn.) by 2018.

Major U.S. cities also have been raising their minimum wages, among them Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, Seattle and Washington, D.C. So have many large employers, including Wal-Mart Stores Inc., Target Corp., McDonald’s Corp., The Gap Inc. and retailer TJX Cos. (owner of Winners, Marshalls and HomeSense).

For several years, dating from even before the Occupy movement of 2011, public sentiment has been shifting toward fairness for the working poor, twinned with a growing contempt for the wealthiest 1 per cent.

In retailing, food service, tourism and other non-union low-wage ghettos, an increase in the minimum wage is the only pay raise the working poor will ever see. It’s worth repeating that most poor people go to work each day.

The chief argument against minimum-wage hikes is that the extra cost kills unskilled, entry-level jobs.
But that assertion, which countless studies have cast doubt on, is offset by improved employee morale and resulting efficiency gains. Higher pay also translates into a drop in costly employee turnover and in “shrinkage” (employee and customer theft).

And while rich people often don’t know what to do with a tax-cut windfall, or even notice they’ve received one, low-income households spend every additional dollar on postponed basic necessities. And that boosts consumer spending across the entire economy.

Mulcair arguably emerged from the shadow of his popular predecessor, Jack Layton, last September when he committed the NDP to restoring the minimum wage for federal government employees, and setting that wage at $15 (Cdn).

“It is unacceptable that in a country as rich as Canada people can work full time and still live in poverty,” Mulcair said at the time.

While that step would affect only federal workers and employees of federally regulated industries, increases in the federal minimum wage would put upward pressure on the lowest wages elsewhere in the economy. That not only would boost consumer spending, it would also reduce the growth rate of social-support funding to alleviate the hardships of poverty.

As noted earlier in this space, a recent poll by Global TV found that 74 per cent of Canadians support a higher minimum wage. And a majority — 52 per cent — favour a $15 minimum wage.
The NDP platform heading into the federal election also calls for tougher measures to curb global warming, restoring the thorough environmental assessment process for new energy projects that Harper has gutted, and an industrial strategy that promotes alternative-energy technologies and other high-pay job-creating 21st-century industries.

But those aren't the issues by which the NDP will command attention, if it succeeds in doing so against an exceptionally combative incumbent PM.

More effective will be the NDP’s commitment raise Canada Pension Plan payouts beyond the current maximum of $12,000 a year, yet another populist measure. The Harper government has flatly refused to increase CPP assistance to fixed-income Canadians.

Harper’s dismissal of the issue prompted Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne to promote a new Ontario Retirement Pension Plan (ORPP) to top up inadequate CPP payouts. Wynne now says that the bureaucratic expense of creating an ORPP can be avoided if a future PM strengthens the CPP, which would be a break for Ontario taxpayers.

The NDP is also committed to creating 1 million $15-a-day daycare spaces across the country over the next decade. In a GTA that is growing by the size of Calgary every seven years, daycare spaces are both scarce and expensive. Annual daycare costs for just one child can run to $14,000 a year.

Affordable daycare, long a mainstay of European life, is an overdue reform. It was pioneered years ago in Quebec, where Mulcair was, of course, a popular provincial cabinet minister. Before Paul Martin’s government was toppled, the then-PM had promised to roll out the Quebec daycare model across Canada. That’s not a radical notion. It’s similar to Lester Pearson’s landmark achievement in making Saskatchewan’s pioneering Medicare system a coast-to-coast realty.

It’s Mulcair’s social-policy initiatives that likely account for most of the recent NDP gains in the polls. Affordable daycare, decent pay, and better CPP benefits that kick in at 65 rather than 67 are among the close-to-home issues to which voters most powerfully relate.

Mulcair’s first year in his current post was marked by a scattergun approach to issues. But the NDP has steadily gained traction since he made affordable daycare, a decent living wage, gridlock-busting urban infrastructure funding and enhanced CPP benefits the centrepieces of his party’s platform.

One of my friends behind the counter at my local Tim Hortons (many of whose minimum-wage employees work two jobs) would like to have a second child. But with daycare expenses of $12,000 a year, she and her husband cannot afford to do so.

That makes the minimum wage a genuine “family values” issue, since their current miserably low level is an impediment to family formation.

My friend is not the only denizen of “Tim’s Nation,” supposedly part of the Harper political base, who is paying a lot of attention to Mulcair these days.
More on

Sunday, August 02, 2015

Election called! Harper to follow Prentice out the door!

The new seat additions give Harper an advantage.  Calling an election before it is required in tough times is going to weigh heavily against him.   

What is really going to work against him is  his unashamed association with the US Republicans and his obvious push to follow their wishes through his intervention into bulk water exports and the CPP which are only warm up exercises for him.  He has given out huge amounts of bulk water exports to various organizations; the RBC catching a pot full. 

Alberta and Canada have lost much of their irrational fear of Democratic Socialist Governments.  This has been reinforced through Notley's performance.

His foray into the forest fire didn't do him favors; the contrary.  He appeared as a dolt when trying to coax exhausted fire fighters into singing O' Canada for him. So phony!

People who got the bit of a cheque in the mail for child care are rethinking that; taxable it doesn't cover a day in daycare for many.

Trudeau  on the other hand has come up blank.  Where is he on bulk water exports, the CPP and a litany of other political statement opportunities that have come his way.  He obviously doesn't have the support of the old guard I supported for so many years.

I challenged them on doing away with income splitting nothing as a senior with a working spouse this is going to cost me major!   They quickly responded they would not apply this to seniors but failed to say anything about the still working spouse.  Doubletalk.  He is trying to be truly new school running a computer campaign almost entirely except for a Stetson day.

In his favor is a larger education of the general public that the NEP did not cause a world recession and it was the proceeding inflation (up to 25%) that stole the mortgaged homes and business, not the NEP.  That is a might help.  His computer efforts are a waste and now detrimental as  even MS has seen son many they are delegated to the Junk box on automatic.

The NDP show promise, most certainly won't be a warmed over Conservative.  I'm sure Mulclair and his NDP will put in a surprising showing much to the chagrin of Harper. As I said Canadians have lost much of their fear of Democratic Socialism. 

Corporations  loving the discounted corporate taxes will cheer on the Cons but in very troubling times (another 6 years minimum of them) would have me believe a NDP nationally is exactly what we need for the next term. The Conservative trickle down policies didn't work for Harper.  Even the bank of Canada chided industry for not turning loose the money handed them by Harper's tax reductions although, I can't blame them.

Lastly Security bill C51 is a brazen attempt to appease homeland security.  It is the most damaging bit of legislation ever to come out of Ottawa.  If you are Canadian Born it does not affect you but if you are a new Canadian Citizen; when the wash is out your citizenship can be stripped under this bill.  That is a bad legislation that Trudeau ducks.
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