Gasification a troubled technology

Existing deep-sea outfalls treatment system a low risk to marine life and humans

Re:  Task force’s work on waste management left out of plan (Sept. 27).

There was nothing notable about Coun. Fred Haynes’ absence from tours of Edmonton’s Enerkem gasification plant and Winnipeg’s sewage plant. Delegates attending these conventions cannot participate in all tours offered … they overlap. Haynes was on tours relating to housing, local food and climate change.

At $120 million, the Enerkem project is 50 per cent over budget and has been subsidized by the Alberta government to the tune of $18 million.

A March 2016 CBC report goes on to say that the project was to be completed in four years, in 2012, but completion is now not expected for at least another year. Further, Edmonton and Enerkem are mired in millions of dollars in lawsuits by suppliers and subcontractors.  An Enerkem spokesperson defended the delays by noting that they are part of the nature of launching cutting-edge technology.

An online search reveals that gasification is still a troubled technology. The track record of our current cabal of councillors suggests that they do not contemplate cutting-edge technology. Simply building a bridge has them flummoxed. And they don’t have the wherewithal to use the science and evidence our taxes have paid for, to make the case to Ottawa that our existing deep-sea outfalls treatment system is such low risk to the marine life and humans that the billion dollars to replace it will be for nothing more than political fluff, not environmental benefit.

Brian Burchill

View Royal