Oil and gas: decommissioning of offshore installations and pipelines

Natural Gas and Crude Oil Prices E&P Companies. Abarta Oil and Gas Company (

Wapiti Energy North American exploration and production company. The pipeline transports crude oil from offshore Chiragi oil field in the Caspian Sea to the Supsa terminal through Sangachal on the Georgian Black Sea coast. Haskel International Inc - BuTech, the broadest valve, fitting and tubing line offers cone and thread connections and expert custom engineering for applications and pressures from vacuum to , PSI 10, bar.

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Notice: The list of Oil Gas Companies in America(North) listed in this region guide are ranked by their company listing category. Oil Gas Companies in America(North) with Premium listing are listed first, then Standard lists of offshore companies in America(North).

Mobil Oil Indonesia MOI identified Yokogawa as its vendor of choice for all natural gas exploration installations in the north of Sumatra. In addition to onshore fields, NAM operates manned platforms and four unmanned monotowers in 19 offshore locations. These connect to a pipeline network that comes ashore at Den Helder. This dramatically lowers communication fees. Operators must receive diagnostic information before a line block leads to a malfunction. Yokogawa provides predictive diagnostics based on trend analysis of the blocking factor, which improves maintenance efficiency and reduces maintenance costs.

Level transmitter configuration can be very time consuming. DPharp transmitters with advanced software functionality eliminate this time consuming task. With maintenance shops getting smaller, finding equipment that allows us to do more with less becomes a priority. One of the most common applications for differential pressure transmitters is flow measurement.

DPharp differential pressure transmitters have some unique signal conditioning features to eliminate instability at low flow rates. The major methods of improved oil recovery are water flooding and steam injection. HART communication is a means of transmitting multiple signals by superimposing long-standard mA DC analog signals on digital signals. The paperless recorder DX series instruments allow you to determine temperature and humidity, and manage the results as manufacturing and quality data at a reasonable cost with a simple configuration.

Reverse osmosis RO is a separation process that uses pressure to force a solution through a membrane that retains the solute on one side and allows the pure solvent to pass to the other side.

More formally, it is the process of forcing a solvent from a region of high solute concentration through a membrane to a region of low solute concentration by applying a pressure in excess of the osmotic pressure. Industrial Combustion sources such as thermal cracking furnaces and, process heaters play a critical role in the process industry.

Because the large amount of fuel such as gas or fuel oil which is consumed in these processes, their combustion efficiency directly affects the performance and operational costs of the production facilities. Floating-point format calculations have enabled physical quantities in engineering units to be used in calculations.

The client wanted to monitor the pressure of the gas well at offshore platform remotely to reduce maintenance cost and increase safety of maintenance personnel. Remote leak detection for pipe line was needed to meet new environmental statute. However cabling earthwork is strictly restricted to protect land environment. The client wanted to monitor the injection gas pressure of gas lift remotely in central control room.

Antitheft measures are needed to install new equipments and cables. A battery room is used to storage batteries for emergency power management in the plant. Each substation has battery room and the storage batteries are lead-acid batteries which must be maintained within specified operating temperature limits.

Temperature management is important to ensure a long service life of the batteries especially for the plant in desert climates. Alarm management is not just a project that has a start and end date; it's a continuous cycle. Once the alarm system has been reviewed and improvements have been identified, we must check that controls are in place to ensure the alarm system remains functional.

The key is to ensure that the system is continuously monitored and any changes are fully documented. There are seven key steps for alarm management. Rationalization is one of those critical steps. Tuning PID controllers can seem a mystery. Parameters that provide effective control over a process one day fail to do so the next.

The stability and responsiveness of a process seem to be at complete odds with each other. And controller equations include subtle differences that can baffle even the most experienced practitioners. The worlds of process automation and production management have been converging for some time.

What once used to be islands of automation and production management functionality connected through highly proprietary integration schemes that were costly to maintain have developed into integrated platforms that provide seamless data exchange between the world of automation and the plant floor, the functions of production and operations management, and integration with business level systems.

The world of process automation is governed by procedures. While we like to refer to the process industries as being largely "continuous", this could not be further from the truth.

Process manufacturing is constantly in flux. Many of these cost reductions come from the advanced functions that fieldbus offers versus analog technology. The automation suppliers that will be successful in the long term will be those that effectively address application or industry specific problems for end users with a value proposition that cannot be ignored.

These problems exist throughout the process industries today, and they won't be solved by simply offering a product, but through a combination of hardware, software, services, application expertise, and knowledge. In ARC's view, customers need a compelling business value proposition to justify investment in any kind of automation.

Vigilance and VigilantPlant were created with this in mind. Yokogawa's vision with VigilantPlant is to create an environment where plant personnel and operators are well informed, alert, and ready to take action. Yokogawa has come a long way in making its message clear to the world of process automation. Last year, the company embarked on a full-scale global marketing campaign to make customers aware of the company's focus on system reliability, security, dependability, and robustness.

Dubbed "Vigilance", the campaign created a unified message for the company and greatly helped expand awareness of the Yokogawa brand and corporate philosophy.

When distributed control systems DCS first appeared on the industrial automation scene in the mids, the focus was on control and operator interface. While control and human machine interface HMI are still important, today's DCSs have evolved to place increased emphasis on integrating plant-wide asset and operational information to enable operational excellence.

Process automation end users are under more pressure than ever to do more with less. The current economic climate means that many automation capital projects are on hold. After implementation of the projects, tens of billions of cubic meters of Turkmen natural gas will be delivered to EU annually through the Caspian Sea, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Turkey, the Black Sea and Romania.

Within the framework of the Southern Corridor Project, negotiations for the creation of new gas transportation routes were held in As a result, an agreement was reached on the implementation of the Azerbaijan-Georgia-Romania Interconnector project AGRI , envisaging liquefied natural gas transportation to Romania and the European market via the territory of Georgia and the Black Sea.

The project is a part of the South Corridor project and enjoys wide international support. The idea of transportation of the Caspian oil to Europe arose in Ukraine in the early s. The initial aim of the project was transportation of Caspian oil to Central and Northern Europe. In May, Ukraine, Poland and EU signed the declaration on supporting the Caspian oil transit through "Odessa-Brody" pipeline and also its extension up to Plock and further to Gdansk via existing pipeline.

The shareholders of the Company are: The pipeline transports crude oil from offshore Chiragi oil field in the Caspian Sea to the Supsa terminal through Sangachal on the Georgian Black Sea coast. Kilowatt hours kWh sold were Major emphasis in operations and planning was placed on fuel conservation.

Significant building and expansion took place in , including development of the East Power Station, the Cemetery Road Transport Facility and the new Administration Building.

Eugene Cox Operations Centre online. The building phase has been accompanied by increased emphasis on efficiency in all of the Company's operations. The voltage system is volts, 60 cycles - same as in North America. No UK-produced consumer appliances will work in Bermuda. Telephone Fax The Ascendant Group has seven operating companies: Belco began in , commenced selling electricity in and was originally called the Bermuda Electric Light, Power and Traction Company. It has a Bermuda Government legislated monopoly on the supply of electricity locally, is the sole supplier to the government at a preferred rate and is a local commercial joint stock company majority owned by Bermudian shareholders.

New electricity laws in Electricity Regulatory Authority Fees Regulations Electricity users will pay a slight increase to fund regulation of the industry. The general regulatory authority fee is increased from 1. US Electricity costs in for comparative purposes. The average price nation-wide people in the U. Bermuda's mere 20 square miles - more than miles away from the USA in the North Atlantic - resident population of only 68, and obvious inability to have no economies of scale makes local costs very high.

The demand for electricity has continued to increase and is always greater in the summer than in the winter. Belco is presently capable of generating up to megawatts of electricity. Large commercial organizations use about 40 percent of all local electrical output. In Bermuda, the architecture, closeness to others and small land size of most Bermuda homes, plus the complete lack of any rivers, nuclear plants, etc. It is piped directly into the central electricity generating plant owned by the utility on Serpentine Road in Pembroke Parish, west of the City of Hamilton, via a 9-mile 6 inch underground pipe from the oil docks terminal at Ferry Reach, St.

Belco staff monitoring electricity usage. Solar and other renewable energy sources may be cleaner and cost-effective elsewhere, but in Bermuda they are still considerably more expensive than oil. Unfortunately in Bermuda, when world oil prices went down sharply in and part of , the Bermuda Government did not allow consumers to benefit for very long. Instead, by April it increased sharply both the cost and rates of duty on oils and gasoline, to one of the highest if not the single highest in the world.

Additionally, from June oil and gas prices have begun to rise again at a steady rate. But any hopes that in Bermuda solar and other renewable energy can result in overall cheaper costs to consumers than oil-produced electricity are dashed until the government reduces sharply the high import duties on imported privately owned solar and renewable energy sources.

Recently, during a Bermuda visit, former CIA director James Woolsey urged Bermuda to go solar, saying the Island needed to end its nearly percent dependence on imported oil because the cost of petroleum had become increasingly volatile and unpredictable. That said, renewable energy resources, such as solar and wind, provide only intermittent power; that is, only when the sun is shining or the wind is blowing.

Currently, there is no commercially available wave or tidal power generation equipment. Liquefied natural gas has been converted temporarily to liquid form for ease of storage or transport. Belco believes significant infrastructure would be needed to offload and store imported natural gas, and there would be costs associated with conversion of the generating plant.

Belco supports the introduction of large- and small-scale renewable energy installations, however it does not have responsibility for encouraging solar or other alternative energy use in Bermuda. That responsibility lies with the Bermuda Government, in particular with the Ministry of Environment, Planning and Infrastructure Strategy, as well as the Energy Commission, which regulates Belco.

Belco has established an Interconnection Policy for any residential and commercial renewable energy installations. Presently, there are two generating stations on 23 acres of property on Serpentine Road in Pembroke Parish. The East and West Power Stations contain a total of 12 diesel engines and 9 gas turbines. The type of fuel used depends on which engines are in operation.

They are slower to start up than the gas turbines but are more efficient to operate. A very light diesel fuel called Cetane runs the six smallest gas turbines. Both types of engines generate a maximum of megawatts of electricity at a frequency of 60 Hz. A generator alternator produces alternating current. Voltage is about 18, volts. A generation transformer increases voltage to 22, volts to transfer electricity more efficiently over long distances. Transmission cables are made from copper or aluminum because they have low resistance.

Belco's central plant needs to be redeveloped. It will initially feature several 18MW diesel engines along with a 65m ft smoke stack, storage tanks and external radiators. Once the new facilities are in place, Belco plans to decommission its oldest power station, located to the north of the Belco offices.

Belco has said that the new site needs to be in place by in order to guarantee reliable power delivery throughout the Island as several of the plant's generators are already working beyond their normal service life. According to the company's long-term plan, new diesel generators will be built within the site's existing footprint as older generators are decommissioned.

While Belco believes that fossil fuels will continue to make up the backbone of the Island's electricity system, it has set a goal of having 20 percent of Bermuda's energy coming from renewable sources by The company believes that Bermuda could see the construction of a large-scale solar farm by , and an offshore wind farm by Underground cables are not as vulnerable to wind damage but cost more to repair than overhead cables. In most rural and urban areas, the cables are overhead, not underground.

George to help improve the look of the town as it went for and got World Heritage Site status. All electrical cabling for new developments such as office buildings and hotels, both in the City of Hamilton and elsewhere are located underground.

Otherwise, this is done only when customers request it and pay for it themselves. There is a major step down sub station where electricity is routed for commercial or domestic use. For domestic use, the electricity passes along high voltage poles to pole-mounted transformers to low-voltage poles to households. In Bermuda, for domestic premises, the average per kilowatt hour KwH cost before tax Fuel Adjustment Rate, FAR is high by international standards, higher than any of the countries named in the International Energy Agency's key world statistics report.

A local firm that was part of the construction of a new power station at Belco has left the job, a spokesman for the power company said. The Royal Gazette understands that Somers staff stopped work on the project after a meeting last Thursday. All of the local subcontractors that were working on the site when this agreement was made have agreed to continue to work directly with BWSC.

The six-month consultation period on the Integrated Resource Plan ended on November The energy industry watchdog has posted many of the responses on its website here , including drawings submitted by children. The rest will be added this week. The spokeswoman said the RA has started to analyse all the proposals and the public on their technical, economic, environmental and social merits.

A vision for a majority renewable energy supply in Bermuda has received overwhelming support in a six-month public consultation. An extended deadline for submissions is tomorrow. It comes after a marketing campaign by BE Solar and environmental charity Greenrock promoting the proposal that included template responses for the public to submit. The new status quo is renewable energy, while the alternative is fossil fuel because of the price.

Dennis Pimentel, president of Belco, said in an opinion piece in The Royal Gazette that more renewable energy capacity could be added to the mix of its plan. By switching to natural gas as a fuel, we can cut our carbon emissions by more than 30 per cent. The Regulatory Authority of Bermuda confirmed that about responses were submitted for the future energy plan, also known as the Integrated Resource Plan. Public outreach began in May with town hall meetings, radio interviews and an informational flyer delivered to every household in July.

Independent consultant Ricardo Energy and Environment provided a report for the RAB on how well each of the proposal submissions met the criteria set by the authority but does not necessarily determine the effectiveness of the proposal itself. The report listed eight checkboxes for each proposal for alignment with the purposes of the Electricity Act and ministerial directions, associated costs, sensitivity, fuel prices and examples of commercial use overseas.

Energy experts and community leaders have weighed in on the future energy debate this month. The proposed farm would cover As a result of the redesign, the site size requirement increased. About solar panels will be erected on the site. The solar farm would be connected to the Belco system through a substation on Kindley Field Road.

The Government signed an agreement to allow the project in June and the planning application said developer Saturn Solar Bermuda has signed power purchase and connection agreements with Belco. The next clean-up is set to start at 9am today and last throughout the afternoon.

Household investments in simple power-saving measures will help the island to grapple with overall electricity costs, according to home affairs minister Walter Roban. Mr Roban retained control of the Department of Energy along with telecommunications broadcasting from his previous ministerial portfolio, after David Burt shifted Cabinet positions on November 1.

We have to bring down the cost of electricity as a top priority. Whatever investments go forward, we will focus on efficiency and conservation. Mr Roban pointed out a scheme last month by Clarien Bank in tandem with Greenrock, in which the bank offered the public a chance to switch incandescent light bulbs for energy-efficient LED lighting.

BE Solar claimed the island is failing to keep up with the international drive to develop schemes that will cut down on harmful gases and tackle climate change. It joined forces with British-based sustainability engineering firm Etude to produce a page report as an alternative to the Integrated Resource Plan already put forward by utility company Belco. The document sets out a proposal for an offshore wind farm with turbines set up six miles west of Dockyard and a rise in the amount of solar projects.

Alan Burland, the BE Solar president, said: This is just too important for future generations to be casual and lackadaisical on. Chris Worboys, a Bermudian who works for Etude, said: When I return to Bermuda and look at the progress, on a sunny day maybe two per cent of the electricity is coming from solar, that really shows the lack of progress.

People are encouraged to join from 5: Presentations will be followed by a question and answer session. What does the outcome of the IRP mean for our children? Is the IRP process something we all need to learn about? What do the proposed plans entail? How can Bermuda residents have an influence on the final decision? As an organization, Greenrock aims to raise awareness and educate the broader community on critical issues relevant to sustainability and as a result we are hosting the meeting this Thursday night.

If you need answers to any of the aforementioned questions please be sure to join us. We fully endorse the plan submitted by Etude and having them on the island to present is an opportunity that we cannot afford to miss.

For more information or to arrange interviews and media coverage please call The cost of electricity in Bermuda is to be reviewed by Belco following an instruction from the Regulatory Authority. The retail rate review will result in an updated usage charge on bills, based on rate per kilowatt hour. In addition, the facilities charge that is shown on Belco bills will also be assessed in the review.

Aaron Smith, interim chief executive officer of the Regulatory Authority, said: While we know that delivery and operating expenses for many services in Bermuda are high, this review will allow the Authority to determine a fair and just rate while maintaining high quality service standards with safe and reliable electricity to all.

Dennis Pimentel, Belco president, said: Belco is in full support of the Authority and looks forward to working with the Authority to assess all costs associated with producing and distributing electricity.

The updated tariff will be published by mid The review does not include the cost of fuel, which is identified separately on Belco bills as the fuel adjustment rate. Dennis Pimentel, a former apprentice at power firm Belco has been appointed as its new president with operational accountability. Sean Durfy, who has been under fire over his management style, which led to a strike, will remain as president and chief executive of parent company Ascendant, although Mr Pimental has assumed control of Belco.

Mr Pimentel, who was vice-president of grid operations, took over his new role with immediate effect, it was announced yesterday. He started at the company as an apprentice in Mr Pimentel has also served in positions including specialist electrical fitter, operations and maintenance foreman and capital projects foreman.

The move came after two weeks of industrial action by the Electricity Supply Trade Union, which called for Mr Durfy and Robert Schaefer, the chief financial officer, to be fired. The stand-off worsened on Friday as unionized staff went on strike, but the work stoppage was called off that evening after Ascendant obtained an injunction from the Supreme Court.

Now the public and the power industry have been given extra time to submit comments and ideas on the integrated resource plan to the Regulatory Authority, which already has eight proposals submitted. One plan by green energy company BeSolar focused on energy efficiency and an offshore wind farm which could be operational by The original deadline of November 13 has been extended to November 30 at the request of the power industry and the public.

The more information, public discussion and feedback there is, the better the final plan will be. We urge interested parties to engage in the process by November Belco workers ended their industrial action after David Burt called a meeting with union officials and the Ascendant Group.

The union imposed a work-to-rule at the company more than two weeks ago amid anger over the departure of the Bermudians and the management style of Mr Durfy. But staff were ordered back to work on Friday night after Ascendant obtained a legal order against the action from the Supreme Court.

Mr Burt said yesterday: Both sides came prepared to talk and I wish to thank them for their willingness to work towards some form of resolution. Most importantly, I am satisfied that the supply of electricity for Bermuda will continue uninterrupted. Unions do not take strike action lightly and in this case it was important to engage in a critical examination of the issues they outlined.

Both sides accept that dialogue must continue and that communication must be open and constructive. In the meantime, the remaining issues will be for the board to address in due course. The Government responded to a need to bring the parties together for the good of the country.

Disputes like this can be concerning but we are a mature democracy that has and will continue to manage issues responsibly, mindful of the wider impact on the community. Discussions will continue over the next few days and I am confident that electricity supply will be delivered uninterrupted as both sides are now clearer on what needs to be done to continue the progress achieved last night.

For Belco customers this means that all regular services will resume effective immediately. We appreciate the input of all parties who have endeavored to bring resolution to this situation and would especially like to thank our customers for their patience and understanding during this challenging time. Electricity Supply Trade Union members were given a legal warning to end their industrial action after a court ruling. A spokesman for Ascendant, the parent company of Belco, said: It is expected that ESTU members will comply with the order and return to work with immediate effect and normal operations will resume.

The union imposed a work-to-rule at the company over the row two weeks ago. The union also wanted the reinstatement of four Bermudian management staff who had earlier left the company. Mr Lottimore said that the strike could mean power cuts and added: But the firm added that power for essential services would be maintained in the event of outages. Medical priority customers should consider attending the King Edward VII Memorial Hospital to ensure they have access to the required care and resources.

Walton Brown, the Minister of Home Affairs, said discussions to break the deadlock were continuing. He was speaking after more than unionized workers marched to the BIU for a four-hour closed doors meeting. The stepped-up industrial action came two weeks after the power union locked horns with management. Passers-by sounded their horns yesterday afternoon in a show of support for the picket line outside Belco. One power worker said that the industrial action was designed to get rid of Mr Durfy.

One elderly customer waiting at the closed office to pay her electricity bill said: Unionized Belco workers gathered outside the utility this morning for a sidewalk march to the Bermuda Industrial Union for a closed-door meeting.

About staff were advised to set off by Donald Lottimore, the president of the Electricity Supply Trade Union, and set off from Serpentine Road at approximately 8. The latest developments come two weeks after the ESTU gave Ascendant Group, the parent company of the utility, 14 days to reinstate four Bermudian members of staff, among other demands. ESTU workers have headed into the BIU building for unspecified talks after Mr Lottimore called for unity in a brief address to workers from the steps of the Ascendant offices.

Workers have headed into the main room and shut the doors. Ascendant knows of the meeting and says there will be no impact on operations at the main plant. But the dispute also involved senior management. A work-to-rule means Belco staff will work basic hours, but overtime and emergency jobs are banned. Ascendant warned last week that the industrial action could stretch its resources and lead to power cuts for customers. Unionized Belco workers adopted a work-to-rule last Friday in the wake of an emergency meeting the day before.

Ascendant, the parent company of Belco, warned that the industrial action could lead to blackouts. The company has tackled minor outages this week, but union staff have refused to work emergency shifts or overtime. The standoff came after an announcement from Ascendant Group that four senior executives had been made redundant or resigned.

The controversy sparked concern from David Burt, the Premier, and Walton Brown, the home affairs minister. It is understood that the ESTU replied to a letter from Ascendant last night, but that no meeting date was arranged. None of them responded. The centerpiece of the plan is a proposal for an offshore wind farm, with turbines set up six miles west of Dockyard, and a growth in the amount of rooftop and utility-scale solar projects.

BE Solar produced the page report in conjunction with sustainability engineering firm Etude as an alternative to the Integrated Resource Plan already proposed by electricity utility Belco. The plan, which offers several different scenarios, is one of eight IRP alternative proposals that have been filed with the Regulatory Authority of Bermuda.

A consultation period on the IRP alternatives is open, with the public being given until November 13 to submit their views to the regulator.

By the late s several thousand electric vehicles, with a total battery capacity exceeding MWh, play an important role in providing demand response. The report sees a massive role for energy efficiency measures in reducing overall demand for electricity on the island, with lighting, water heating and cooling offering the greatest opportunities for reductions of more than one third in power consumption, using existing technologies.

Commercial and office buildings have great scope for cutting costs, particularly with lighting and cooling, the report adds. It cites case studies featuring recent building improvements. The Cumberland House office building, for example, achieved a more than 40 per cent reduction in energy consumption, by modernizing its lighting, sub metering and installing a building management system.

The electricity consumption was nearly halved, and the project completely paid for itself in 33 months. The report concludes that electricity costs vary little between its cheapest and most expensive scenarios. The lowest cost, The highest cost, However, maximizing renewables, with Belco burning LNG, has a huge environmental advantage, with carbon emissions 62 per cent lower.

BE Solar calculated a lifetime average, or levelised, cost for renewable energy sources based on factors including capital cost, weighted average cost of capital, maintenance costs, system lifetime and capacity factor. The building of the offshore wind facility could be completed by , the report states. It argues that liquefied petroleum gas could be a better bet for the island than LNG as it offers similar benefits in terms of cost and carbon, while providing greater flexibility for the island in an environment of declining fossil fuel use.

As a result, it sees plans for an LNG regasification terminal being scrapped. Directors at under-fire power firm Belco are prepared to meet union and government representatives to try to end industrial action at the firm. The union has demanded the return of the four Bermudian non-unionized staff and the removal of two top managers. October 6, Industrial action at Belco could leave customers in the dark, the utility warned this morning.

Workers downed tools at the power company this week, culminating in the imposition of work-to-rule by the Electrical Supply Trade Union, after the departure of four members of the management team. Work-to-rule impacts overtime and emergency work. The ESTU has called for the reinstatement of the staff. There are always staff at the plant to monitor the engines and, if necessary, perform emergency shut downs.

However, due to the current work to rule action, and starting this weekend, the company will not have adequate resources to both operate the plant and respond to issues on the network and our customers might experience prolonged outages. The company will continue to provide updates through local media channels as well as on social media on the Belco Facebook page.

Belco management and staff thank customers for their understanding and patience at this time. Union workers at power firm Belco imposed a work-to-rule yesterday in the wake of controversial management departures. Jason Hayward, president of the Bermuda Trade Union Congress, demanded the return of the four Bermudian non-unionized staff, and the removal of two top managers at the utility. The dispute, which Mr Lottimore said had harmed morale at the company, included the dismissal of non-unionized staff.

The firm added that Denton Williams, chief operating officer, and Zehena Davis, vice-president of human resources had resigned. Mr Durfy said that management was prepared to work with the union.

The congress also said it wanted to know if the North Power Station would be operated and maintained by Belco employees. The announcement came as David Burt, the Premier, tweeted: We will not simply ignore practices that do not meet the highest standard of corporate community responsibility. The management and Board of Ascendant have a responsibility to their shareholders first; but my responsibility and the responsibility of the Government is to the people. As the union and its members work through these issues, the Government is committed to supporting fair business practices that meet the highest standard of corporate community responsibility.

Even a monopoly must act right. In particular, the workers are angered that Michael Daniel and Denton Williams, who both have served the company for 29 years respectively and had worked their from apprentice positions to senior management, were forced to leave. It is our understanding the board and the CEO targeted this particular group of senior Bermudians, which included Zehena Davis and Carol Ross-Desilva, because they did not agree with the manner in which the Board and the CEO were handling the affairs of the company and, in particular, the treatment of workers.

The ESTU is extremely shocked at the departures of Zehena Davis and Denton Williams as they were primarily responsible for heading the current round of industrial bargaining negotiations. These departures come at a very peculiar time as their alleged resignations occurred in the midst of talks which were scheduled for this week.

Sean Durfy was speaking after three marketing staff lost their jobs at the parent company of electricity company Belco last week.

Their roles were outsourced to design and marketing firm Cosmic. Mr Durfy wrote a letter to staff just before 1am yesterday morning that said: I have made and will make decisions about how we run this company to the best of my ability.

Some of those decisions will be very difficult. The home affairs ministry stepped into a row last night about three redundancies at power firm Ascendant. The move came after three Bermudian marketing staff lost their jobs last week at Ascendant, parent company of Belco, and their roles were outsourced to the design and marketing firm Cosmic. A post on Facebook claimed later that Belco had fired the staff after a work permit for the chosen overseas candidate for senior vice-president of marketing and corporate communications, Laurie Feser, was refused because there were Bermudians qualified for the job who were not considered.

A spokeswoman for the home affairs ministry said: When the Department of Immigration learnt about the redundancies last week, inquiries commenced into the actions of the company. The department cannot speak to specific allegations until they have been completely investigated, however, the department will inform the public what action, if any, will be taken following the completion of its investigation.

However, the Department would like to clarify that the person named in the message was not issued a work permit and does not have permission to work in Bermuda.

Our records indicate that this individual is not in Bermuda and if any member of the public has information about actions that contravene our immigration laws, they are encouraged to call the immigration department. I must add that this government has zero tolerance for such actions.

This will not be tolerated and sanctions will be imposed. An Ascendant spokesman confirmed: The marketing and communications functions have been outsourced to Cosmic Ltd, a local, Bermudian-owned and managed company.

Union members staged a protest outside the headquarters of Belco yesterday after three staff were made redundant. The action came after three marketing and communications staff lost their jobs at parent company Ascendant last week, when their roles were outsourced to Bermudian design and marketing firm Cosmic.

What you find in this parking lot is literally decades of service to this company. Anybody who has an idea about generating electricity is standing here today.

The marketing department went from being necessary to unnecessary in two months. Ms Feser no longer works for the company. Ascendant said that, in addition to the three redundancies, two vacant positions at the firm had been axed. An Ascendant spokesman added: The Regulatory Authority has asked the public for input on what should be the service standard for energy providers. Aaron Smith, RA interim chief executive, said: The Service Standards are a requirement of the Electricity Act The authority said the standards, when complete, will identify: The authority will also consider monitoring the performance of licensees, comparing energy generation companies against each other and establishing performance incentives.

Power firm Belco said today it was pleased regulation changes will allow it to sign up more people to sell excess energy back into the grid. But IRP is still going through the consultation process, which Belco said meant it could not sign additional contracts.

New amendments to address the problem were approved by the House of Assembly this summer and came into effect three weeks ago. The Regulatory Authority announced at the weekend that it would require Belco to enter purchase agreements with any energy generators that meet the requirements.

Belco said it will today issue day notices of amendments for those with existing contracts and then contact those without contracts. The Bermuda Electric Light Company Ltd Belco has been ordered to pay for all energy put into its system by those with solar panels. The Regulatory Authority said that those who have been putting electricity into the energy grid without being reimbursed will receive backdated payments. A spokeswoman said the order requires Belco to enter into purchase agreements with all energy generators that meet the requirements.

The company must also compensate them for any electricity supplied to Belco within 30 days of the parties signing a standard contract. Payment requires a standard contract between Belco and the distributed generator. Households with solar power generators who have been feeding electricity to Belco without compensation, will also receive backdated payment for any energy they have provided to the grid in the past.

Electricity Amendment Act was enacted. Re-opens the door for those with solar panels to sell their excess electricity, putting it back into the grid. A Amendment had meant that contracts to put energy into the grid could only be put in place if they were consistent with the Integrated Resource Plan IRP.

Belco had taken the legal position it could not sign additional contracts until it was in place. These amendments will allow contracts to be signed before the IRP was in place. He added that both Belco and the Regulatory Authority had been consulted about the amendments.

The meeting is open to the public. In response to questions, the advocacy group said the timing of the launch of the SEA was in response to the Regulatory Authority reducing the amount power utility Belco has to pay for electricity purchased from solar producers by 61 per cent, from 44 cents per kilowatt hour to The reduction means existing solar photovoltaic customers have seen their expected payback period of between seven and ten years doubled, a scenario that has also deterred potential new customers.

The trend in Bermuda, away from the growth of renewable energy, is in complete contrast to worldwide trends where renewable and in particular solar energy has seen rapid and continuous growth and deployment. The SEA sees enormous untapped potential for the industry. For these reasons, there is huge potential for the future growth of solar energy in Bermuda, but that growth is totally dependent on a properly structured regulatory framework and clearly defined energy policy, neither of which currently exist.

The SEA said it would follow up with a series of informational broadcasts to support the organization's objectives. Walter Roban, the regulatory affairs minister, last month signaled that the Bermuda Government intends to re-establish rebates for solar installations.

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