…EPA studyAn environmental study undertaken by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has found that the likelihood of an oil spill offshore Guyana as part of the ExxonMobil exploration is considered unlikely to occur because of the extensive preventative measures employed.The Liza-1 drill shipIt has nevertheless found that an oil spill is considered possible, and Esso Exploration and Production Guyana Limited (EEPGL) has conducted oil spill modeLling to evaluate the range of likely spill trajectories and rates of travel.The location of the Project at 190 km (120 miles) offshore, prevailing northwest currents, the light nature of the Liza field crude oil, and the region’s warm waters would all help minimise the severity of a spill.“Accounting for these factors, the modelling indicates only a 5-to-10 per cent probability of any oil reaching the Guyana coast without taking into consideration the effectiveness of any oil spill response, and in the unlikely event that a spill were even to occur,” the study found.EEPGL (45%), Hess Guyana Exploration Limited (30%) and CNOOC Nexen Petroleum Guyana Limited (25%) are parties to a petroleum agreement with the Government of Guyana. Under this agreement, and in light of the Liza field discovery, EEPGL has applied for, and has received, a petroleum production licence and has submitted a project development plan to the Minister responsible for Petroleum.A key permit required for EEPGL to develop the Liza field is the Environmental Authorisation from the Guyana Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), in accordance with the Guyana Environmental Protection Act of 1996 (EP Act Cap. 20:05).As part of its regulatory role, the EPA, considering recommendations from the Environmental Advisory Board (EAB) and the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission (GGMC), is responsible for deciding whether, and under what conditions, to grant EEPGL’s application for Environmental Authorisation (Application), which was filed with the EPA on July 5, 2016.Based on an initial assessment of the project, the EPA determined that an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) was required.EEPGL has proposed to drill approximately 17 subsea development wells and use a floating production, storage and offloading (FPSO) vessel to process, store, and offload the recovered oil.The FPSO will be connected to the wells via separate production (oil, gas, and produced water), gas injection, and water injection flowlines and risers, and associated subsea equipment.The project, according to the environmental study, will also involve shore-based facilities and marine/aviation services to support development drilling, FPSO and subsea equipment installation, production operations, and ultimately decommissioning.“EEPGL will utilise proven and industry accepted standards, and has incorporated many embedded controls into the overall project design to minimise environmental and socioeconomic impacts…It could take up to four years to drill the wells, with drilling planned to begin as early as 2018.”The initial production is expected to begin by mid-2020, with operations continuing for at least 20 years.The planned activities of the project, according to the environmental study, are predicted to have minor impacts on physical resources, no impacts on coastal biological resources, minor impacts on marine biological resources, and largely positive impacts on socioeconomics.These predictions are based on the fact that the bulk of the project activity will occur approximately 190 km (120 miles) offshore, and the project will capture and re-inject produced natural gas, which is not used as fuel on the FPSO, back into the Liza reservoir; treat required wastewater streams prior to discharge to the sea; have a very small physical footprint, and use marine mammal observers (MMO) during selected activities to minimise the potential impacts to marine mammals due to auditory injury and ships strikes.
Success of Indian athletes has been remarkableWorld champion wrestler Sushil Kumar entered the Indira Gandhi Stadium to the sort of deafening applause India reserves usually only for Sachin Tendulkar. When Saina Nehwal smashed her way out of a match point, the celebrations at Siri Fort Complex and in millions of homes across India was no less than when India beat Australia in the nerve wracking, nail biting Test match in Mohali.A young mother came up to Commonwealth Games (CWG) Organising Committee vicechairman Randhir Singh, requesting for her son to be introduced to Abhinav Bindra. She wanted to click a picture of her son with Bindra, so that he would have Bindra’s picture above his bed and would inspire him to emulate the heroics of the Olympic gold medallist. I cite these instances for all those who argue that the CWG were a colossal waste.Never before in India have so many people followed the fortunes of sports stars outside cricket so closely. While the Games are unlikely to transform India into a sporting power overnight, they are very likely to herald a new beginning. The ball that began to roll when Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore shot his way to a silver at the 2004 Olympics will now gather even greater momentum.Because inspired by the heroics of Bindra, Sushil, Vijender and other CWG stars, dozens of young boys and girls are expected to take to sports like never before. Haryana is a shining example of the magic that can unfold when youthful energy finds a platform and patronage. Inspired by Vijender, Akhil Kumar and Sushil and actively backed by the state government, hundreds of young kids are taking to taking to wrestling and boxing.advertisementThat athletes from Haryana won a whopping 15 gold and that the state would have stood fifth at the Games had it contested as a country is an example of what Indian youngsters can do when opportunity marries hard work.While some might find the ways of Haryana chief minister Bhoopinder Singh Hooda to be rustic, the fact remains that his patronage has transformed the lives of sportspersons in the state. He has given others the confidence that if they bring sporting glory they too can be assured of a good government job and enough money to sustain themselves and their families.In the 2006 Melbourne Games, Haryana athletes won one gold, three silver and one bronze. In four years, athletes have managed to win 15 of India’s 38 gold medals. This is no less than a minor miracle. His cahoots might break CWG protocol by getting medallists to come and touch his feet after winning bouts, international delegates might be appalled by the sycophancy, foreign athletes might snigger but India owes a big thank you to Hooda and his government for producing champions.Each champion will inspire a hundred dreams to take wing. While sports may not be a priority for Mayawati’s government in Uttar Pradesh, Karunanidhi’s government in Tamil Nadu, or for Yeddurappa’s bumbling government in Karnataka, but what is to stop some of the country’s more effective administrators like Narendra Modi, Nitish Kumar, Ashok Gehlot or Shiv Raj Singh Chauhan to give sports the same impetus and push as Hooda.Just imagine the collective energies that would get unleashed if chief ministers got competitive about whose state wins more medals in international sporting events. India’s tally could double from 38 in time for Glasgow 2014. This is not an idle dream but one that India can achieve. Will this ever happen in our country? I’m afraid the chances are bleak.If these games are being considered a success it is because of the stellar performances of our athletes. Every Indian had to bow his head in shame as story after story broke of gross mismanagement and unimaginable plunder before the Games. From the Prime Minister downwards, they are all to be held accountable for having allowed the mess to perpetuate.What was the PM doing when Suresh Kalmadi and company dragged their feet, intentionally allowed the delays and then tried to push all expenses through at the last minute. They obviously knew that the government had no option but to clear the spending because the Games were nearing. Ex-CAG chief VK Shunglu has been appointed by the Prime Minister with the carte blanche to investigate all CWG-related fraud, but it will serve no good if the committee only looks for easy scapegoats.The noose is tightening around Kalmadi and Bhanot. But they are not the only ones, responsible for having defrauded India. The rot runs deep. Even people close to the PM are culpable. Kalmadi and chief minister Sheila Dixit have been given a cold shoulder by both the PM and Sonia, who did not invite them for the athletes’ felicitation functions. But a mere cold shoulder is not enough. The villains need to be punished and sent to jail.advertisement
Advertisement(Photo Courtesy: Cricbuzz)After a long wait, Karnataka opener Mayank Agarwal has finally got his chance to represent the national side, after he was picked for the upcoming two match test series vs West Indies at home.It has been such a period for Mayank in recent times that his omission from the Asia Cup squad raised a lot of questions. Barring the recent IPL, Mayank has been in the form of his life for about 2 years now.In the 2017-18 Ranji Trophy, Mayank amassed more than 1000 runs and topped the run scorers list. But a chance to represent the national side has always eluded him.Now having got the opportunity to represent India in the five day format, Mayank will look to make it count in every chance he gets as he will know that even a single failure may result in him being axed.Apart from the Ranji Trophy, Mayank has also played some crucial knocks while representing India A in England. Here is his knock of 112 scored at Leicester vs the England Lions that helped his team beat the hosts by a comfortable margin of 102 runs.Also Read:Mayank Agarwal comments on long-awaited national call-up Advertisement
Mumbai: A day after resigning as NCP MLA, six-time legislator Dilip Sopal formally joined the Shiv Sena here on Wednesday. Besides Sopal, former Congress MLA Dileep Mane also joined the Shiv Sena at party chief Uddhav Thackeray’s residence in suburban Bandra. Congress leader Nagnath Kshirsagar from Solapur district was also inducted into the Sena on Wednesday. Sopal, who won from Barshi Assembly seat in Solapur district in the 2014 state polls, on Monday formally announced his decision to quit the Sharad Pawar-led party. Also Read – Uddhav bats for ‘Sena CM’Welcoming Sopal and others into the Sena, Thackeray said all fresh inductions were being made after consultation with local party leaders. “We have not kept anyone in the dark about such political decisions,” he told reporters here. Earlier, another NCP leader from Karmala tehsil in Solapur, Rashmi Bagal, joined the Shiv Sena last week. Mane previously represented Solapur-South Assembly seat but in 2014, he lost it to BJP leader Subhash Deshmukh, who is currently a state minister.