Friday, October 11, 2013

Welcome to the New Age AGAINST CSG - YouTube

Welcome to the New Age AGAINST CSG - YouTube


  1. Fracking related?

    A swarm of earthquakes hits the heart of the Wheatbelt

    A recent swarm of earthquakes in the Wheatbelt may continue to occur for a number of months.

    Last week, a number of small earthquakes were detected around Koorda, Kellerberrin and Cunderdin.

    A larger 2.5 magnitude quake occurred in Meckering.

    Geoscience Australia's Hugh Glanville says the Wheatbelt is currently experiencing what it calls a "swarm" of seismic activity.

    "It seems to be continuing on with these magnitude one and magnitude two earthquakes," he said.

    "Sometimes we're getting multiple during the day and sometimes a few days without any but we've had tens or dozens of earthquakes at the moment and we expect that to continue on at this time."

    The swarm comes as the Wheatbelt marks the 45th anniversary of one of WA's most significant earthquakes, at Meckering.

    On October 14, 1968, a 6.9 magnitude earthquake rocked the small Wheatbelt town, bringing down buildings, bending rail lines and rupturing ground along an almost 40 kilometre stretch.

    Miraculously, no one died.


    Could Barnett look Kimberley kids in the eye if this goes?

    A night patrol service for Broome children is in doubt

    The charity Save the Children says the future of a night patrol service for Broome children is in doubt.

    The organisation runs the Helping Young People Engage (HYPE) bus three nights a week and finds children roaming the streets after dark and takes them home or to a safe place.

    On an average night the bus picks up about 30 children.

    WA Program Manager Juan Larranaga says HYPE's funding runs out this month and there is no money secured yet to take over.

    "In this instance it was funded by the WA Attorney General," he said.

    "They only fund programs for two years and then after that it's really up to the agency to find solutions or funds themselves."

    "We know the solutions to these problems, they're not resolved in one or two years, they're actually long term."

    Mr Larranaga says he is talking with the State Government to find a replacement fund.

    "At the moment we've reduced HYPE program activity to two nights a week to reduce some of the costs and try and extend the program beyond October."

    "We may need to stop HYPE for a short time, ideally the shorter the better, but we'll continue to explore other options."


    No doubt LNG exports will be touted as the saviour.

    Canada's energy industry hit by US shale gas success

    WE hate it when our friends become successful," lamented Morrissey. Canada's energy industry likely shares the gloomy British singer's sentiment. Canada sits just across the border from the world's largest oil and gas market, and its biggest ally. But successful development of US shale resources is spoiling it all. Alberta's oil firms suffer steep discounts already as they try to sell into a glutted US market, not helped by opposition to the Keystone XL export pipeline.


  2. Palmer is now Australia's answer to the Koch Brothers - it's official.

    PUP carbon tax support to cost $10bn

    CLIVE Palmer is demanding Tony Abbott repeal the carbon tax retrospectively and refund billions in revenue in exchange for his party's crucial Senate support in a move that would enable the businessman to escape a $6.2 million disputed charge for emissions. The Palmer United Party has formed an alliance with the Australian Motoring Enthusiast Party's Ricky Muir, giving the bloc four of the six crossbench votes needed to pass legislation in the Senate without Labor or Greens support from July, subject to a recount in Western Australian.

    PUP's official policy is to scrap Labor's carbon pricing regime but the party wants the repeal backdated to start of the carbon tax on July 1, 2012, so companies and households can be refunded.

    The Coalition's election promise to scrap the tax is not retrospective, and Mr Palmer's push would force the government to refund the $3.6 billion raised last financial year and $6.5bn in receipts forecast this year. "In relation to the carbon tax, we've said that we want it abolished from the day it was introduced because if it's a bad tax, it's always been a bad tax," Mr Palmer told the Ten Network.

    "We think it should be repealed from the date of introduction and the Liberal Party policy seems to be only to repeal it and not worry about the injustices that happened over the last year or two.

    "So we'd want to get clarification on that. We'd want to get some advice, talk to people and have a friendly discussion with Mr Abbott.

    "The Abbott government will press ahead with its plans to repeal the carbon tax, despite lacking the support in the current Greens-controlled Senate.

    "We are not waiting for the new Senate," Environment Minister Greg Hunt told The Australian."We will introduce legislation to repeal the carbon tax in week one of the new parliament.

    "We expect the ALP to respect the will of the people and we will not stop until the tax is gone. Only they can stand in the way of removing the carbon tax. The question is whether the new Labor leadership has listened to the Australian people or is going to continue to support higher electricity prices.

    "In July, Mr Palmer was hit with a $6.2m charge from the Clean Energy Regulator for refusing to pay carbon tax owed by his private company, Queensland Nickel.

    The carbon price was $23 per tonne of emissions. Mr Palmer owes $29.90 per tonne as a penalty for failing to pay on time but the Queenslander is pursuing a High Court challenge on the validity of the carbon tax.

    Mr Hunt said the government would not comment on the case but "we have always said that businesses must obey the law as it stands although they also have the legal right to challenge it in the courts".

    Greens leader Christine Milne said: "An emissions trading scheme is the law. Across the country, businesses are meeting their climate-related liabilities.

    "It is up to members of parliament to act in the national interest and that includes being transparent about existing or potential conflicts of interest.

    "Senator Nick Xenophon predicted "Clive's version of horse-trading could make him look like a complete ass."

  3. Remember this?

    Wage claims make waves for energy shipping

    PUBLISHED: 06 Aug 2013 00:08:00 | UPDATED: 12 Aug 2013 05:58:27


    Mark Skulley

    Vessel operators serving Australia’s vast offshore oil and gas industry are being throttled by burgeoning wage costs and falling profits, says a new study by Deloitte Access Economics.

    The Australian Mines and Metals Association argues the study shows a “critical economic context“ around negotiations as new four-year workplace agreements are negotiated amid a slow-down in hydrocarbon projects such as at the North-West Shelf.

    In the last round of negotiations in 2010, the Maritime Union of Australia won pay increases of 30 per cent over less than four years, while allowances for workers in offshore construction rose from $90 a day to $215 a day.

    AMMA chief executive Steve Knott said the Deloitte report showed the competitive challenges facing the vessel operators had “changed dramatically” since 2010. Resource companies had been squeezed by cost pressures without further gains in productivity.


    Followed by this.

    Maritime Union hits back on wages’ growth claim

    James Massola Political correspondent - 25 Sep 2013 00:31:00


    The Maritime Union of Australia has hit back at claims that wages growth is making Australia’s resources sector uncompetitive, releasing new research from analysts BIS Shrapnel it says debunks as a myth claims Australia is a high-cost economy.

    The BIS research, commissioned by the union, is a direct response to a Deloitte Access Economics report released in August by the Australian Mines and Metals Association that showed revenues in the offshore oil and gas sector had risen only 8 per cent since 2007-08 while wages and total expenses per vessel had risen by 40 per cent in the same period.

    But the new research found that between 2007 and 2012, companies in the sector enjoyed revenue growth of more than 200 per cent while wages grew by 50 per cent in the same period.

    BIS Shrapnel’s research found that claims that marine cooks in the sector were being paid up to $230,000 per year were exaggerated by up to 40 per cent, while on specific projects such as the $52 billion Gorgon liquefied natural gas project, wages accounted for just 0.25 per cent of the total cost of the project, contrasting with claims that wages growth threatened the project.

    MUA national secretary Paddy Crumlin said the claims in the Deloitte Access research demonstrated the need for the Abbott government to stand up to the ill-informed claims of industry groups. “It’s time the industry moved away from this subjective, survey-driven, deeply-flawed research commissioned by the AMMA,’’ Mr Crumlin said.

    “To allow for an intelligent debate between the two sides it requires the mouthpiece of the oil and gas sector to stick to the truth, which the BIS Shrapnel [research] has clearly demonstrated that they have not been.

    “The reality is that the wages of hard-working MUA members are not driving the rise in costs in the oil and gas sector, and are certainly not to blame for the staggering cost blow-out of the Gorgon project.”

    The BIS report found that targeting wage costs accounted for less than 1 per cent of potential cost savings in Australian LNG projects and was critical of the Deloitte Access report’s methodology, arguing it had only surveyed five of 19 vessel operators and that AMMA members who commissioned the report were also responsible for negotiating bargaining agreements.

  4. Remember this ....cont.....


    They were looking in the wrong place all along!

    WHAT a scandal!


    Leighton rejects jetty cost claims

    Peter Williams, The West Australian October 14, 2013, 5:02 am

    Management of a Leighton Holdings company working on Chevron's Gorgon LNG project have been accused of slashing costs submitted by staff which showed blowouts of up to $2 billion.

    Leighton Contractors has denied the claims by former members of the Barrow Island LNG jetty project, which come as Leighton Holdings and former executives fight reported allegations of making corrupt payments overseas.

    The company is pressing Chevron to once again increase the value of the jetty contract, citing soaring costs and delays. When Chevron agreed to lift the Saipem Leighton consortium's jetty contract to $1.85 billion mid-last year, members of the project staff said they had told Leighton Contractors' management it would cost about $3.5 billion to finish.

    Those with knowledge of the project now estimate it could cost about $4 billion. "They're disastrous numbers," a former team member said. "The actual cost to date would be exceeding the revenue right now."

    Former project staff said costings submitted to monthly contract reviews in Perth were changed to match revenue figures and the team told to work from those amounts.

    "I refused to change it," one said. "It just got changed anyway when it got reported up to the corporate level.

    "What they're doing is wrong. They're not being honest to the market, the shareholders."

    Another former project member claimed two sets of books had to be kept to keep track of the real costs of the project. "You lose sense of what's reality after a while," he said.

    Team members who questioned changes to budget figures were allegedly told it was not their concern. "I wasn't comfortable doing what we were doing," an ex-staffer said.

    The jetty project is said to be notorious for "miserable" morale and high turnover.

    A Leighton Contractors spokeswoman said: "We completely reject assertions that we have 'doctored' costs. The project has been the subject of regular audit reviews."

    The project continued to face increased costs and schedule impacts, the spokeswoman said. These included labour and productivity associated with site infrastructure, logistics challenges and weather delays.

    "We are in discussions with our client about variations we have submitted to reflect the increased costs," she said. Chevron would not comment.

    Leighton Contractors said 37 of the jetty's 56 concrete caissons had been put in place, with the positioning of another three under way. A mid-2012 update had said the facilities would be delivered this month.
    The former Leighton team members believed it would be a struggle to finish the project before early 2015, when Gorgon is scheduled for first LNG cargo.