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Sample records for syncrude

  1. Syncrude's commitment to Aboriginal development

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Loader, R.K.

    1999-01-01

    The paper describes how the Syncrude relationship with Aboriginal communities in the region came about, and how Syncrude maintains that relationship and share in the community at its oil sands operation in Alberta, Canada. Syncrude is a world leader in oil sands development and in promoting the quality of the working life and employment of native peoples. The remainder of the presentation is devoted to that particular achievement. The partnerships Syncrude has built are based on mutual respect, a sustainable capability, a professional relationship, support of community, and self-reliance. Syncrude recognized very early on that Aboriginal people would have a major interest in the company's future and sought to integrate the company's program into operations as a normal way of doing business. Today, Aboriginal people play a vital role in the oil sands industry, working at a variety of skilled occupations. The education component of Syncrude's program is designed to equip Aboriginal people with the training they need to claim their fair share of the employment pie at Syncrude. Contractors servicing Syncrude are about one-fifth Aboriginal-owned and run operations and they are in turn encouraged to hire Aboriginal employees. There are three direct elements of the program: employment, education and business development, but partnerships go beyond just that: they extend to the community such that Syncrude is dedicated to working with local people, when requested, to help them define and meet their needs and to achieve self-reliance

  2. Celebrating 25 years of Syncrude`s Geotechnical Review Board

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    McKenna, G.

    1998-09-01

    An historical review of Syncrude`s Geotechnical Review Board (GRB) was presented, relating some of the successes of the Board over the past 25 years since its establishment. A list of the type of challenges faced by Syncrude where the GRB`s guidance and counselling proved to be critical, is also included. The GRB was established in the 1970s to help Syncrude manage its geotechnical-based risks and to enhance its long-range chances to be successful in oil sands mining. Mining oil sands was breaking new ground back then, consequently, the geotechnical risks were largely unknown and the potential of heavy financial losses were great. Under such circumstances making the right decisions in dealing with geotechnical risks was vital to success. The fact that 25 years later Syncrude is still operating on the basis of those earlier decisions and still relies heavily on the expertise of the Board for recommendations and guidance is a testimony to the value of the GRB to Syncrude`s operations. The GRB`s success is credited to the Board`s world-wide expertise, objectivity, focus on the big issues, risk-based approach and its excellent working partnership with Syncrude employees. Dragline mining and tailings management are the areas that benefited the most from the Board`s involvement, but the Board has been involved in every facet of geotechnical-based risk management. Some of the geotechnical challenges that the GRB has helped Syncrude to overcome include dam construction of muskeg foundation, heavy foundations on gassy and temperature-sensitive soils, coring and testing of gassy/expansive oil sands and haul roads, highwall design utilizing locked sands, winter construction of large fluid retaining embankments and characterization and management of fluid fine tailings. 3 refs., 1 graph, 3 figs.

  3. Syncrude's commitment to Aboriginal development

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Loader, R. K.

    1999-01-01

    Syncrude's program designed to maintain good relations with Aboriginal communities in all areas where Syncrude operation impact upon Aboriginal peoples and their traditional ways of life are described. The program extends from employment through education to business and community development, the preservation of traditional lifestyles, and the protection of the environment. As examples, some 13 per cent of Syncrude's workforce is made up of Aboriginal people, at an average annual salary of $58,000. The company offers $ 2,000 each, specifically to Aboriginal persons, wanting to further their education particularly in disciplines related to oil sands. A five-year $ 500,000 program has been established by Syncrude at the University of Alberta specifically for Aboriginal people to pursue careers in engineering, medicine , education and business. Other career programs are also offered through Keyano College, Athabasca University and the Northern Alberta Development Council, and there is a strong commitment by the company to encouraging adults to go back to school and for kids to stay in school. Last year the company spent $ 54 million with Aboriginal-owned and operated businesses; the company also support several programs to foster the appreciation of Aboriginal culture not only in Alberta but throughout the country. Environment is the fifth and final element of the Aboriginal Development Program. It involves consultation and working with local communities on environmental matters involving issues ranging from land reclamation to emission reduction. Some six million dollars are spent annually on reclaiming land and reintroducing native animal and plant species wherever possible. An outstanding example of this is the Wood Bison Trail on 210 hectares of reclaimed land managed by the Fort McKay First Nations. It is readily acknowledged that dealing with Aboriginal concerns has not been an easy road to travel and that there are still many things to do. Nevertheless, there

  4. Understanding hydrotransport : the key to Syncrude's success

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Paine, R.B.; Wright, B.M.

    1998-01-01

    Syncrude's use of pipeline slurries to convey oilsand from its Athabasca deposit to the extraction plant marks the beginning of a new era in oilsand processing. With this new conveyance system Syncrude plans to phase out the dragline, bucketwheel reclaimer, and conveyor ore mining and delivery system in favour of shovel, truck, and hydrotransport technology. Shovels will be used to mine the ore in a conventional open pit bench mining scheme. The oilsand will then be loaded onto trucks, hauled to a crusher for sizing and fed into the hydrotransport system where it will be slurried with water and caustic soda and pumped to the extraction plant by pipeline. The advantages of hydrotransport include significant energy savings and considerably less plant infrastructure. A new method to describe the source ore characteristics and plant performance was also developed. The use of this information system within the corporation is described. 7 refs., 3 figs

  5. Syncrude Canada Ltd. annual report, 1991

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1991-01-01

    Syncrude Canada Ltd. is the world's largest producer of synthetic crude oil from oil sands. It supplies 11% of Canada's crude oil requirements. Production in 1991 reached 9.6 million m 3 of synthetic crude oil shipped at unit operating costs of $16.48/bbl. Operating cash flow before capital expenditures, financing costs, and taxes was $393 million. Capital expenditures in 1991 were $157 million, mainly for completion of the southwest sand storage project, enhancement of the auxiliary production system in Syncrude's open pit mine, and installation of a new computerized process control system for bitumen extraction. Occupational safety performance improved over 1990. Emissions controls were improved during 1991 by improving seals on CO boiler diverter stacks and reliability efforts which improved service factors in the processing plant. A total of 143 hectares of land were reclaimed in 1991, compared to 40 hectares in 1990. Productivity in 1991 reached 13,600 bbl per employee. Total mine production reached 124.4 million tonnes and bitumen recovery in the extraction plant was 91%. Research projects conducted in 1991 included investigation of options for replacement of the east and west mining areas, a review of steam assisted gravity drainage for possible application at Syncrude, and the viability of hydrotransport of mined oil sand. 15 figs., 10 tabs

  6. Technology visions for mining at Syncrude

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fair, A.; Oxenford, J.; Coward, J.; Lipsett, M. [Syncrude Canada Ltd., Ft. McMurray, AB (Canada)

    1999-01-01

    Technological developments that will affect operations at Syncrude Canada`s oil sands mining operations in Alberta during the next decade or two are discussed. Three types of changes are anticipated: (1) improvements to current mining technology, (2) new technologies that will radically alter the way in which mining is conducted, and (3) platform changes that represent significant advances between these two extremes. New technologies in the first category include the move to larger and more efficient mobile equipment such as shovels and trucks, improved wear materials to extend component life and reduce maintenance costs, improved contracting strategies, organizational structures, and mine planning and reporting systems. In the breakthrough category (category 2), development of such technologies as shallow in-situ mining, improved use of automation, and the development of modular and relocatable oil sand mining and bitumen extraction facilities are the most likely. Changes expected in the platform technologies (category 3) include improved equipment condition monitoring and diagnostic systems and the associated sensors and embedded analysis systems, and a greatly expanded communications infrastructure for voice, data and video to allow company-wide real time access to the information generated by these systems. 9 refs., 2 tabs., 8 figs.

  7. Syncrude Canada Ltd. annual report, 1992

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1992-01-01

    Syncrude Canada Ltd. is the world's largest producer of synthetic crude oil from oil sands. It supplies 12% of Canada's crude oil requirements. Production in 1992 reached a record 10.4 million m 3 of synthetic crude oil shipped at unit operating costs of $15.39/bbl. Operating cash flow before capital expenditures, financing costs, and taxes was $516 million. Capital expenditures in 1992 were $79.2 million, mainly for completion of the southwest sand storage project, enhancement of the auxiliary production system, installation of advanced control equipment in both extraction and utilities, and improvements in both diluent recovery unit and LC-finer throughput, reliability and yield. A total of 180 hectares of land were reclaimed in 1992, compared to 143 hectares in 1991. Total mine production reached 124.7 million tonnes and bitumen recovery in the extraction plant was 91.7% Research projects conducted in 1992 included development of the Fine Tails Management Strategy, as well as research in hydraulic oil sand transportation/remote extraction, improved bitumen recovery methods, and higher conversion and yield processes. Efforts also focused on a continuing reduction of particulate emissions and on-going studies into self-sustaining, fully reclaimed sites. 9 figs., 5 tabs

  8. [Syncrude Canada Ltd.: Competing in the decade ahead

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Newell, E.

    1991-01-01

    At Syncrude Canada, the world's largest oil sands operation, efforts are constantly under way to prepare the company for the challenges of the 1990s and the next century. The company has generally been able to improve its safety, production, and cost figures from one year to the next over its 12-year history. In its latest 5-year plan, the objectives are a 10% reduction in workforce numbers, a 13% improvement in production, and a $155 million reduction in organizational costs. The key factors influencing Syncrude's success have been found to be that the company does not have control over the oil price and that it does have control over organizational effectiveness. This indicates the difference that people can make to an organization's success. Tapping the best thinking, innovative ideas, risk taking, and creativity of Syncrude's human resources will be the key to fulfilling the objectives of its future plans

  9. Giant Syncrude oilsand plant a prodigious user of propane

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anon

    2001-01-01

    Approximately 13 per cent of Canada's petroleum requirements are met by the huge Syncrude plant in northern Alberta, the largest producer of crude from oilsands in the world and the largest source producer in Canada. The plant is located just north of Fort McMurray northeast of Edmonton. The operation of the plant relies in a very large part on the use of propane. Scattered on the site are 130 propane tanks. The pumphouse is equipped with four 1,000-gallon tanks, and the mobile Sundog heaters in the mine site are equipped with a number of 420-pound tanks that supply the required power. The yearly maintenance program requires the use of an additional 80 to 90 tanks that are brought on the site for that purpose. All told, two million litres of propane are used yearly at the plant. Heating the facilities and equipment is the main use for the propane. For example, heating the draglines (25-storey high and a bucket as large as a two-car garage) that scoop the oilsand and transport it for processing necessitate the use of several 20-pound and 40-pound propane-powered tiger torches. However, large trucks and shovels, part of an innovative transport system called hydro transport, will soon replace the draglines. This new method eliminates the need for draglines, bucket wheels, conveyer systems and conditioning tumblers by mixing the oilsand with water for transportation by pipeline. The first step of the extraction process, the conditioning, occurs in the pipeline. Upon reaching the extraction plant, the mixture is directed into the separation vessels. Without an increase in energy usage or carbon dioxide emissions, Syncrude is able to increase its extraction activity by switching to hydro transport. The requirement for propane is still present as the bottom of the slurry has to be heated for transport. Some basic facts concerning Syncrude and its operation were presented, as well as an overview of the oilsand business, its history and its financial results. For example

  10. A case study of the remediation of Syncrude's Research Centre and the changes made in Syncrude's research operations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mueller, P.; Evans, P.; Ziervogel, H.; Parraguez, C.

    1996-01-01

    The new Research Centre for Syncrude Canada has made safeguarding the environment a priority. The former research facility in northeast Edmonton was decommissioned because of contamination at the site caused by more than 25 years of industrial operations. The process to decommission the site was based on a cost effective, phased approach to site dismantling, investigations and remediation. During the site remediation, several areas of contamination were found, with little background information to understand how the material had entered the soil. At he new facility a conscientious effort will be made to document all activities to prevent future occurrences of this type. 1 ref., 1 tab., 4 figs

  11. Entomological reconnaissance of Syncrude Lease No. 17 and its environs

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Porter, W.B.; Lousier, J.D.

    1975-01-01

    In 1974, a three week field reconnaissance study of terrestrial insects occurring on Syncrude Lease No. 17 and its environs, in the Athabasca Tar Sands of Northern Alberta, was carried out. Various sampling methods were employed in disturbed and undisturbed stands of different boreal forest tree types and in an area cleared of trees for mining purposes. The results obtained suggest that further study of certain insects may give an early indication of possible environmental damage. These insects are a dung beetle, Aphodius sp. (Scarabaeidae : Coleoptera), two species of March flies (Bibionidae : Diptera) and several species of ground beetles (Carabidae : Coleoptera). A future sampling plan can be based on the quantitative (soil sampling) data.

  12. Understanding toxicity at the watershed scale : design of the Syncrude Sandhill Fen watershed research project

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wytrykush, C.

    2010-01-01

    Fens are peat-accumulating wetlands with a water table consisting of mineral-rich ground or surface water. This study discussed the construction of a fen-type reclaimed wetland constructed in a post-mining oil sands landscape. Syncrude Canada's Sandhill fen watershed project represents the first attempt at constructing a fen wetland in the oil sands region. The wetland and its watershed will be constructed on a soft tailings deposit. The design basis for the fen and watershed was developed by a team of researchers and scientists. The aim of the fen design was to control the salinity caused by tailings consolidation and seepage over time. Methods of mitigating potentially toxic effects from salinity were discussed.

  13. Fourier transform Raman spectroscopy of Syncrude sweet blend distillation fractions derived from Athabasca bitumen.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michaelian, K H; Zhang, S L; Hall, R H; Bulmer, J T

    2001-01-01

    The C-H stretching region in FT-Raman spectra of Syncrude sweet blend (SSB) and three distillation fractions (naphtha, light gas oil and heavy gas oil) was analyzed in detail in this investigation. The frequencies and intensities of the 11 aliphatic and three aromatic C-H bands used to fit the spectrum of SSB were equal to the averages (weighted sums) of the corresponding quantities in the spectra of the fractions. The additivity of the spectra, thought to be a consequence of the large number of discrete compounds contained in each fraction, makes it possible to estimate the composition of other SSB samples using the spectra of the fractions reported in this work. In the aromatic C-H region, total intensities can be used to calculate the distribution of aromatics among the distillation fractions; these data also permit calculation of the fractional aromaticity (per cent aromatic carbon) for SSB and each fraction, with accuracies comparable to those obtained using NMR spectroscopy.

  14. Survey of wildlife, including aquatic mammals, associated with riparian habitat on the Syncrude Canada Ltd. Aurora Mine environmental impact assessment local study area

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Surrendi, D.C.

    1996-12-31

    A general overview of the wildlife associated with riparian habitats at Syncrude`s proposed Aurora Mine, located 70 km northeast of Fort McMurray, Alberta on the east side of the Athabasca River, was presented. The area is underlain by bitumen and is being considered for bitumen extraction and production of synthetic crude oil. Two surveys were conducted with the help of experienced trappers from the community at Fort McKay. One was an aerial survey on November 3, 1995, the other a ground survey on November 29-30, 1995. The two surveys yielded 248 observed tracks on four 500 metre transects. The study area was comprised of boreal forest with natural drainage via Stanley Creek into the Muskeg River and via Fort Creek into the Athabasca River. Beavers, fox, weasel, mink, rabbit, wolf, moose, deer, ptarmigan, sharp-tailed grouse and ruffed grouse, lynx, coyote, river otter and mice were associated with riparian habitat on the study area. There was no sign of muskrat in the study area. It was concluded that in order to develop an understanding of reclamation alternatives for mined areas in the region, future detailed examination of the site should be approached through the integration of traditional ecological knowledge and conventional scientific methodology. 26 refs., 12 tabs., 2 figs.

  15. Survey of wildlife, including aquatic mammals, associated with riparian habitat on the Syncrude Canada Ltd. Aurora Mine environmental impact assessment local study area

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Surrendi, D.C.

    1996-01-01

    A general overview of the wildlife associated with riparian habitats at Syncrude's proposed Aurora Mine, located 70 km northeast of Fort McMurray, Alberta on the east side of the Athabasca River, was presented. The area is underlain by bitumen and is being considered for bitumen extraction and production of synthetic crude oil. Two surveys were conducted with the help of experienced trappers from the community at Fort McKay. One was an aerial survey on November 3, 1995, the other a ground survey on November 29-30, 1995. The two surveys yielded 248 observed tracks on four 500 metre transects. The study area was comprised of boreal forest with natural drainage via Stanley Creek into the Muskeg River and via Fort Creek into the Athabasca River. Beavers, fox, weasel, mink, rabbit, wolf, moose, deer, ptarmigan, sharp-tailed grouse and ruffed grouse, lynx, coyote, river otter and mice were associated with riparian habitat on the study area. There was no sign of muskrat in the study area. It was concluded that in order to develop an understanding of reclamation alternatives for mined areas in the region, future detailed examination of the site should be approached through the integration of traditional ecological knowledge and conventional scientific methodology. 26 refs., 12 tabs., 2 figs

  16. Baseline non-traditional resource use in the Aurora Mine EIA local study area and the Syncrude/Suncor regional study area

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1996-01-01

    As part of the environmental impact assessment (EIA) in the regional and local study area of Syncrude's proposed Aurora Mine, the use of natural resources by non-aboriginal residents and non-residents in the area was documented. The objective of the study was to determine what specific resources are being used, how much, when, where and why. The topics included hunting, fishing, camping and canoeing. Public opinion regarding opportunities for resource use was also documented. The report focused on the dynamic nature of resource use, secondary economies (tourist accommodations) and quality of life. A telephone survey was conducted in which 17 respondents from recreational organizations answered a resource use questionnaire which contained 38 questions on consumptive and non-consumptive uses of wildlife, fish, berries, timber, non-resident use and resource management policies. The three environmentally significant areas of the local study area included the Muskeg River, Kearl Lake and East Jackpine Creek. The regional study are contained the Horse River Diversity area, La Saline Natural area, Schultz's Bog Diversity area, Athabasca Tar Sands Reach, Clearwater River, McClelland Lake Patterned Fens, McClelland Lake, and the Fort Hills. Agriculture in both areas is limited because of unfavourable climate and generally low-quality soil. 13 refs., 7 tabs., 6 figs

  17. Two stages catalytic pyrolysis of refuse derived fuel: production of biofuel via syncrude.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miskolczi, N; Buyong, F; Angyal, A; Williams, P T; Bartha, L

    2010-11-01

    Thermo-catalytic pyrolysis of refuse derived fuels with different catalysts had been conducted in a two stages process due to its important potential value as fuel. The first stage was a pure thermal pyrolysis in a horizontal tubular reactor with feed rate of 0.5kg hourly. The second stage was a semi-batch process in the presence of catalysts. Results showed that the tested catalysts significantly have affected the quantity of products. E.g. gas yield could be increased with 350% related to the catalyst free case using ZSM-5, while that of pyrolytic oil was 115% over Y-zeolite. Gases consisted of mainly CO and CO(2) obtained from the tubular reactor, while dominantly hydrocarbons from the second stage. Ni-Mo-catalyst and Co-Mo-catalyst had shown activity in pyrolytic oil upgrading via in-situ hydrogenation-dehydrogenation reactions. Sulphur, nitrogen and chlorine level in pyrolytic oils could be significantly declined by using of catalysts.

  18. Cover systems in the Athabasca oil sands : a summary of the Green Bullet and ten years of reclamation research at Syncrude Canada Ltd.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    O' Kane, M. [O' Kane Consultants Inc., Calgary, AB (Canada)

    2010-02-15

    This PowerPoint presentation discussed the use of a dry cover system over oil sand tailings as land reclamation strategy. Dry covers can range from a single layer of earthen material to several layers of different material types, including native soils, non-reactive tailings or waste rock, geosynthetic materials, and oxygen consuming organic materials. The 3 prototype covers used in the Athabasca deposit in northern Alberta include peat, glacial till and sedge-sphagnum open bog (SSOB). The hydraulic role of the covers was described. This presentation also described how the physical reclamation works, with particular reference to how the area is contoured to ensure proper drainage. Soil and vegetation assessments are undertaken to ensure the reclamation amendments are achieving the goals of the reclamation plan. tabs., figs.

  19. Cover systems in the Athabasca oil sands : a summary of the Green Bullet and ten years of reclamation research at Syncrude Canada Ltd

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    O'Kane, M.

    2010-01-01

    This PowerPoint presentation discussed the use of a dry cover system over oil sand tailings as land reclamation strategy. Dry covers can range from a single layer of earthen material to several layers of different material types, including native soils, non-reactive tailings or waste rock, geosynthetic materials, and oxygen consuming organic materials. The 3 prototype covers used in the Athabasca deposit in northern Alberta include peat, glacial till and sedge-sphagnum open bog (SSOB). The hydraulic role of the covers was described. This presentation also described how the physical reclamation works, with particular reference to how the area is contoured to ensure proper drainage. Soil and vegetation assessments are undertaken to ensure the reclamation amendments are achieving the goals of the reclamation plan. tabs., figs.

  20. Native excellence

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bower, T.

    1992-01-01

    Syncrude Canada Ltd., operator of the oil sands mine and processing plant near Fort McMurray, Alberta, produces 11% of Canada's crude oil and is the country's largest private-sector employer of native Canadians. Syncrude has the goal of employing about 10% native Canadians, which is about the percentage of natives in the regional population. Examples are presented of successful native employment and entrepreneurship at Syncrude. Doreen Janvier, once employed at Syncrude's mine wash bays, was challenged to form her own company to contract out labor services. Her company, DJM Enterprises, now has a 2-year contract to operate three highly sophisticated wash bays used to clean mining equipment, and is looking to bid on other labor contracts. Mabel Laviolette serves as liaison between the oil containment and recovery team, who recover oil skimmed off Syncrude's tailings basin, and the area manager. The team approach and the seasonal nature of the employment fit in well with native cultural patterns. The excellence of native teamwork is also illustrated in the mine rescue team, one unit of which is entirely native Canadian. Part of Syncrude's aboriginal policy is to encourage development of aboriginal enterprises, such as native-owned Clearwater Welding and Fabricating Ltd., which has held welding and fabricating contracts with most major companies in the region and is a major supplier of skilled tradesmen to Syncrude. Syncrude also provides employment and training, encourages natives to continue their education, and promotes local community development. 4 figs

  1. Judge rejects appeal by oilsands giant, human rights case to proceed

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Anon.

    2006-10-15

    Syncrude Canada has lost its bid to be dropped from a human rights case filed by a Sikh man who claims to have been fired for having a beard. Syncrude has argued that it was not responsible for firing the man in 2003, maintaining that the electrician was employed by another contractor to work at an expansion project in Fort McMurray. The Sikh man has argued that his religion forbids him from shaving his beard. Syncrude believes that beards are a safety hazard, and workers are required to wear a tight-fitting mask that protects them against gas leaks. The man claims that supervisors took him to one side on his first day at Syncrude to explain the company's policy, and that he offered to buy himself a different type of mask made especially for people with beards and/or eyeglasses. A union steward presented his request to management, but it was rejected. Under Alberta's human rights act, Syncrude must prove that accommodating a worker's needs would cause undue hardship for the company. Human rights advocates have suggested that Syncrude is not honouring human rights legislation in the province. As one of Alberta's largest employers, the question of Syncrude's responsibility in the case is crucial.

  2. Investing for the future : Athabasca Oil Sands Trust 1998 annual report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1999-01-01

    The Athabasca Oil Sand Trust was created in 1995 when a subsidiary of the Trust, Athabasca Oil Sands Investment Inc., acquired Alberta's 11.74 per cent working interest in the Syncrude Project, which is a joint venture involved in the mining and upgrading of bitumen from the Athabasca oil sands. The Trust is a closed-end investment trust which was created to provide an opportunity for direct public investment in Syncrude and oil sands development in northern Alberta. Syncrude, produced a record 76.7 million barrels of Syncrude Sweet Blend (SSB), and shipped its one billionth barrel on April 16, 1998. Another key achievement in 1998 was the investment the Syncrude Joint Venture Partners of almost half a billion dollars to maintain Syncrude's operations and pursue the Business Plan growth targets outlined in last year's report. By aggressively pursuing this capital investment program despite the current low oil prices, the Syncrude Joint Venture Partners expect to double SSB production to 155 million barrels per year by 2007. The Athabasca Trust's share of these capital expenditures to fuel the projected growth in production is about $ 70 million this year and the next. The report provides operating statistics on production, financial highlights and consolidated balance sheets for 1998, including operating expenditures, capital expenditures, and the usual notes to the consolidated financial statement. 10 tabs., 2 figs

  3. Bison and the oil sands industry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pauls, R.W.

    1998-01-01

    Syncrude's Mildred Lake oil sands development project is located within the central boreal mixed wood forest in an area supporting traditional land uses, including trapping and harvesting of wildlife and plant materials by Fort McKay First Nation residents, in a community within 10 km of the Syncrude development. Reclamation requirements and standards in Alberta specify that the reclamation process must restore a landscape capability equivalent to, or better than that existing before disturbance. Syncrude is committed to complying with all provincial requirements and guidelines in all aspects of its business, including land reclamation. A five year research program has been established to determine the feasibility of reclaiming a portion of the landscape to support wood bison and bison subspecies once indigenous to this area. The current project may be expanded as a pilot commercial ranching venture to explore its commercial viability as a business venture by the Fort McKay First nations

  4. Aboriginal Review 2003/2004

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2004-01-01

    This report presents information on Syncrude's efforts and achievements in working with Aboriginal communities and leaders in Alberta since 2002 through its Aboriginal Development Program. The report discusses the six key commitment areas of the Program. First, the report provides an overview of Syncrude's achievements in the area of corporate leadership including participation in the Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Industry Advisory Committee; recognition by the Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business as a leader in Aboriginal relations through the Aboriginal Relations program; supporting the National Aboriginal Achievement Foundation; championing the Aboriginal Human Resources Development Council of Canada; membership of the Alberta Chamber of Resources Aboriginal Programs Project; Conference Board of Canada's Council on Corporate Aboriginal Relations; and, chairing the Mining Association of Canada. The report discusses business development of Aboriginal entrepreneurs and business owners including Syncrude's employment targets for Aboriginal employment in the Syncrude workforce. It discusses community development in Aboriginal communities such as long distance learning; the Fort Chipewyan day care centre; the Chipewyan Prairie Dene First Nation Multi-Purpose Community Centre in Janvier; and, an elder care facility in Fort McKay First Nation community. It discusses education and training including the Alberta Aboriginal Apprenticeship Project; Syncrude Aboriginal/Women Education Awards Program; University of Alberta Aboriginal Careers Initiative; and, the Aboriginal Financial Management Internship. The report also discusses Syncrude's consultations with Aboriginal communities on environmental issues such as end-land use, air quality and how further expansion can occur without long-term impacts on traditional land uses. The report also contains questions and answers with Aboriginal leaders to discuss the impact of oil sands development. figs

  5. Technical and economic framework for market enhancement of shale oil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bunger, J.W.; Devineni, A.V.

    1992-01-01

    By now it is apparent that production of syncrude from shale oil will not be economically viable as long as there is a stable and reasonably-priced supply of petroleum. The costs and financial risks of producing syncrude from oil shale, in the face of price constraints imposed by petroleum markets, are too high to warrant private investment. A possible solution is to develop commodity and specialty products from shale oil which command a high market value. In this fashion, the economics are partially uncoupled from petroleum and an opportunity for a greater price/cost differential is provided

  6. Helping hands : successful women take time out to be mentors to girls, fostering an advantage males take for granted

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lorenz, A.

    1999-01-01

    Efforts by professional women in industry to encourage and mentor young women to study science and engineering and to raise the profile of women in industry are described. The case of Dr. Jane Cooley at Syncrude Research Centre is cited as an example of similar programs. Dr. Cooley provides guidance to third-year university students working on year-long internships at Syncrude. Reference is also made to the Alberta Women's Science Network (Internet address: www.awsn.com) where young women interested in careers in science and engineering can turn for advice. Female high school students unanimously complain of guidance counselors who even today discourage women from entering science and engineering programs. The general conclusion is that better guidance must start in the high schools, because missing out on the right courses in science and mathematics at that level can close career doors by the end of the twelfth grade

  7. Aurora Mine project - historical resources baseline study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Reeves, B.

    1996-01-01

    This volume contains the results of a base line archaeological study of the Aurora Mine Project local study area. It was compiled in support of Syncrude Canada's application to the Alberta Energy and Utilities Board (AEUB) and Alberta Environmental Protection to construct and operate it new Aurora Mine, located northeast of Fort McMurray, Alberta. The objective of this study was to compile, consolidate, review and analyze the reports for the area compiled over the past 22 years in and adjacent to the local study area (LSA), particularly those of now existing and Syncrude projects, and previously proposed Alsands and OSLO projects. The report is a summary of the human history in the area including pre-contact native archaeological sites, past archaeological studies, the Hinterland site pattern, post-contact native traditional sites, oil sands exploration/development related sites and paleontological sites in the subject area, and areas adjacent to it. 150 refs., 5 tabs., 43 figs

  8. Analysis and Testing of JP-5 Fuel Derived from Coal

    Science.gov (United States)

    1977-01-01

    Air propulsion T’,;,t Center (NAPTC) is investigating alternate sources ( coal , shale and tar sandt;) that could be used to ! roduce J1-5. This work is... coal derived JP-5 type fuel tested is a hydrotreated kerosene that had been fractionated from a Western Kentucky syncrude (Sample 0005). 5. Method of...IeeCko*wInbW) Evaluation Water Coalescers Soluble Copper Coal Derived JP-5 Fuel Storage/Thermal Stability S Engine Performiance Specification Tests

  9. The role of zeolite in the Fischer–Tropsch synthesis over cobalt–zeolite catalysts

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sineva, L V; Mordkovich, V Z; Asalieva, E Yu

    2015-01-01

    The review deals with the specifics of the Fischer–Tropsch synthesis for the one-stage syncrude production from CO and H 2 in the presence of cobalt–zeolite catalytic systems. Different types of bifunctional catalysts (hybrid, composite) combining a Fischer–Tropsch catalyst and zeolite are reviewed. Special attention focuses on the mechanisms of transformations of hydrocarbons produced in the Fischer–Tropsch process on zeolite acid sites under the synthesis conditions. The bibliography includes 142 references

  10. Laboratory evaluation of selected tar sand asphalts

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Button, J.W.; Epps, J.A.; Gallaway, B.M.

    1980-12-01

    Three tar sand asphalts of similar grades prepared from one syncrude by three different refining methods were characterized by tests commonly used to specify paving asphalts together with certain special tests. Asphalt-aggregate mixtures were prepared using these asphalts and tested in the laboratory to determine strength stiffness stability, tensile properties, temperature effects and water susceptibility. Comparison of the tar sand asphalt properties to conventional petroleum asphalt properties reveal no striking differences.

  11. Application of the ASVAHL processes to heavy oil upgrading: economic evaluation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Auboir, P.; Beaufils, J.P.; Billon, A.; Hennico, A.

    1987-01-01

    This economic study illustrates the possibilities of applying ASVAHL techniques to the processing of heavy oils. Beginning from a crude of the Cold Lake type, the process aims to produce a synthetic crude that can be used directly in a conventional refinery equipped with a reforming unit and an FCC unit. Figures are presented for both the direct and the indirect ASVHAL routes, including sensitivity to Syncrude and heavy crude prices, and presenting the net back values for both routes.

  12. Compromised development and survival in amphibians in reclaimed wetlands' water containing oil sands process-affected material

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Smits, J.; Schock, D. [Calgary Univ., AB (Canada). Faculty of Veterinary Medicine

    2010-07-01

    When closing a mine, operators must comply with government regulations to ensure that the sites are ecologically sustainable to support endemic flora and fauna. Creating wetlands in order to age and detoxify oil sands process-affected materials (OSPM) is a common reclamation strategy. In this study, amphibians indigenous to the boreal forest ecosystem were examined to determine if they can complete their lifecycle in water from reclaimed wetlands. Wood frog (Lithobates sylvaticus) eggs were collected from a natural pond 60 km south of an oil sand mining site. Tadpoles were raised in 1 of 6 water treatments refreshed every two days. The 2 reference water treatments included aged tap water and water from natural wetlands. The remaining 4 water treatments were from research wetlands on Syncrude and Suncor lease sites. Of the 120 tadpoles raised per water treatment, there was no significant difference in growth, development, or survival rates between the aged tap water and reference wetland water, but the fastest growth, development, and highest survival rates occurred in the two reference groups. There was a pronounced difference among the 4 treatment groups from Suncor and Syncrude reclamation sites. Survival was high in 3 of the water treatments from Syncrude and Suncor sites, but development rates were considerably reduced. Tadpoles that do not metamorphose before winter do not survive. It was therefore concluded that delayed development in tadpoles poses a serious risk to population stability in OSPM-containing wetlands.

  13. Exploring the biodegradation and toxicity of naphthenic acids present in Athabasca oil sands process affected waters using simulated wetlands

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Toor, N.; Liber, K. [Saskatchewan Univ., Regina, SK (Canada); MacKinnon, M. [Syncrude Canada Ltd., Edmonton, AB (Canada); Fedorak, P. [Alberta Univ., Edmonton, AB (Canada)

    2007-07-01

    Naphthenic acids (NAs) are a persistent group of dissolved organic acids found in oil sands process affected water (OSPW) from the Athabasca Oil Sands (AOS) in northern Alberta. This study investigated the feasibility of reducing the toxicity of OSPW in wetland environments, and proposed a strategy for reclamation at the AOS. Laboratory microcosms were used to mimic natural wetlands. The purpose was to determine if the toxicities of OSPWs generated by Syncrude Canada Ltd. (Syncrude) and Suncor Energy Inc. (Suncor) change with time as a result of aging and biodegradation. Experiments involved 2 types of OSPW obtained from Syncrude and Suncor. Nutrient availability (nitrogen and phosphorus enrichment) was increased for both short and long hydraulic retention times (40 and 400 days). The NAs found in the OSPW were tracked over the course of one year using Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy, Gas Chromatography/Mass Spectrometry and Microtox bioassays. The objective was to determine the relationships between total NA concentrations, the degree to which different sub-groups of NAs are biodegraded and any potential reduction in OSPW toxicity.

  14. Dealing with PM demons : in the wake of a series of megaproject snafus, project managers are under the gun to deal more effectively with the details

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lunan, D.

    2006-01-01

    This article argued that many of the project management problems currently experienced in the oil and gas industry are the result of cut-backs in project management staff in the mid 1980s. As the industry began to grow, there was a dearth of new managers with enough experience to deal with massive new projects. Suncor Energy's Millennium oilsands project was 6 months late getting started and the final $3.5 billion price tag was 70 per cent over initial budget forecasts. Shell Canada's Albian Sands bitumen project was also 6 months late and was 60 per cent more costly than anticipated. Syncrude Canada's Upgrader expansion was 18 months late and cost $8.6 billion, more than 100 per cent over initial budget forecasts. It was suggested that Syncrude relied too heavily on the expertise of contractor organizations. The lack of in-house talent has meant that companies are turning more and more to outside project management consultants. However, Syncrude's recent difficulties have suggested that large companies are in need of in-house project management teams so that companies can focus on safe, reliable operations. Extensive pre-engineering can reduce the need for project scope changes. It was concluded that although modularization, fixed-price contracts and high standards of data acquisition are also necessary, the success of a large project will depend ultimately on the experience and talents of project managers. 2 figs

  15. Compromised development and survival in amphibians in reclaimed wetlands' water containing oil sands process-affected material

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Smits, J.; Schock, D.

    2010-01-01

    When closing a mine, operators must comply with government regulations to ensure that the sites are ecologically sustainable to support endemic flora and fauna. Creating wetlands in order to age and detoxify oil sands process-affected materials (OSPM) is a common reclamation strategy. In this study, amphibians indigenous to the boreal forest ecosystem were examined to determine if they can complete their lifecycle in water from reclaimed wetlands. Wood frog (Lithobates sylvaticus) eggs were collected from a natural pond 60 km south of an oil sand mining site. Tadpoles were raised in 1 of 6 water treatments refreshed every two days. The 2 reference water treatments included aged tap water and water from natural wetlands. The remaining 4 water treatments were from research wetlands on Syncrude and Suncor lease sites. Of the 120 tadpoles raised per water treatment, there was no significant difference in growth, development, or survival rates between the aged tap water and reference wetland water, but the fastest growth, development, and highest survival rates occurred in the two reference groups. There was a pronounced difference among the 4 treatment groups from Suncor and Syncrude reclamation sites. Survival was high in 3 of the water treatments from Syncrude and Suncor sites, but development rates were considerably reduced. Tadpoles that do not metamorphose before winter do not survive. It was therefore concluded that delayed development in tadpoles poses a serious risk to population stability in OSPM-containing wetlands.

  16. Joint ventures between industry and government

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vant, T.R.

    1991-01-01

    Joint venture projects undertaken between government and industry in western Canada are reviewed. The first significant involvement of the Alberta government was with the Syncrude oil sands project. In 1974, one of the original participants, Atlantic Richfield, pulled out of Syncrude for financial reasons. After a government review and search for replacement participation, three provincial governments took equity positions in the project. The Syncrude project has since had a very significant impact on Alberta and Canada in terms of oil production, employment, investment, and profits. The Other Six Leases Operation (OSLO), the OSLO New Ventures Project, and the Lloydminster Bi-Provincial Upgrader would also not have advanced to their present stages of development without government participation. Since oil sand/heavy oil development requires significant capital investment over long lead times, and since there are few private companies that can undertake such a commitment, government assistance is often required. It also makes sense for governments to share upfront risk in such projects for both the long-term economic gain and such immediate benefits as job creation and energy supply security. An industry/government joint venture provides a means of getting large, inherently economic projects such as oil sands developments under way while protecting taxpayers' interests. The success of such a joint venture depends not only on the financing brought to the project but also on the expertise, decision making capability, and balanced management of regulatory and policy issues

  17. Costs of coal liquefaction: influences of technical/economic risk

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tillman, D.A.

    1987-02-01

    Despite the recent declines in the world price of oil, the potential for manufacturing synthetic liquids from coal remains a significant economic force. Consequently, it is important to determine the approximate costs of synthetic liquid fuels from coal. Further, it is important to evaluate how those costs relate to crude oil prices, and at what world oil price synthetic fuels will be introduced. Finally, it is important to evaluate the influences of technical and financial risk on the cost of coal liquids, and whether experience can reduce the cost of manufacturing such coal-based fuels. This paper focuses on the risk issue as it relates to the discount rate, and then estimates the cost of synthetic fuels from solvent extraction and coal-to-methanol processes. At the point of introduction the cost of syncrude is about 8.60 dollars per million Btu and the cost of coal based methanol is about 11.90 dollars per million Btu. The price of crude oil required to achieve introduction of syncrude is about 10.70 dollars per million (or over 62 dollars per barrel). Building pioneer plants can reduce the cost of coal liquids, however. It is estimated that reducing the economic risk by experience can bring about a reduction in syncrude costs of about 1.70 million dollars Btu, and can bring about a reduction in methanol costs of about 2.30 dollars per million Btu. Such savings achieved by experience are equivalent to dramatic improvements in capital cost, operating cost, or fuel cost. 12 references.

  18. Literature survey of properties of synfuels derived from coal

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reynolds, T. W.; Niedzwiecki, R. W.; Clark, J. S.

    1980-02-01

    A literature survey of the properties of synfuels for ground-based gas turbine applications is presented. Four major concepts for converting coal into liquid fuels are described: solvent extraction, catalytic liquefaction, pyrolysis, and indirect liquefaction. Data on full range syncrudes, various distillate cuts, and upgraded products are presented for fuels derived from various processes, including H-coal, synthoil, solvent-refined coal, donor solvent, zinc chloride hydrocracking, co-steam, and flash pyrolysis. Some typical ranges of data for coal-derived low Btu gases are also presented.

  19. Literature survey of properties of synfuels derived from coal

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reynolds, T. W.; Niedzwiecki, R. W.; Clark, J. S.

    1980-01-01

    A literature survey of the properties of synfuels for ground-based gas turbine applications is presented. Four major concepts for converting coal into liquid fuels are described: solvent extraction, catalytic liquefaction, pyrolysis, and indirect liquefaction. Data on full range syncrudes, various distillate cuts, and upgraded products are presented for fuels derived from various processes, including H-coal, synthoil, solvent-refined coal, donor solvent, zinc chloride hydrocracking, co-steam, and flash pyrolysis. Some typical ranges of data for coal-derived low Btu gases are also presented.

  20. Engineering sustainable ecosystems: using GIS-based habitat modeling for oil sands mine reclamation and closure planning

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Seel, K.

    1997-01-01

    A GIS model was built to predict the climax vegetation habitat types on reclaimed mine surfaces in the Fort McMurray region of the Mid-Boreal Mixedwood Ecoregion of northwestern Alberta. Regional vegetation habitat types were classified by digital remote sensing using Landsat Thematic Mapper satellite data. Terrain data was derived from a high-resolution digital elevation model. The validated model was applied to the GIS database of Syncrude Canada's Mildred Lake Mine to predict future vegetation patterns based on the final closure mine surface. The results were compared to revegetation and closure plans created by experts to analyze performance and sustainability of reclamation efforts

  1. Heavy minerals in the Athabasca oilsands tailings -- potential and recovery processes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ciu, Z.; Etsell, T. H.; Liu, Q. [Alberta Univ., Dept. of Chemical and Materials Engineering, Edmonton, AB (Canada); Oxenford, J.; Coward, J. [Syncrude Canada Ltd., Edmonton Research Centre, Edmonton, AB (Canada)

    2003-10-01

    In the hot water process of extracting bitumen from Athabasca oil sands the bitumen froth treatment tailing contains on average 10 per cent of titanium oxide and 1.4 per cent of zirconium oxide. At the current Syncrude and Suncor production rates the tailings contain approximately 220,000 tonnes of titanium oxide and 80,000 tonnes of zirconium oxide that can be potentially recovered annually, or about six per cent of the world's production of titanium and nine per cent of the world's production of zircon. This paper provides a review of a number of studies undertaken since the 1970s, discussing the development of metallurgical processes designed to produce saleable heavy mineral concentrates from the oil sands tailings. Given the substantial amounts of heavy minerals in the oil sands tailings and further expansions planned by both Syncrude and Suncor as well as other operators, production of titanium and zirconium from oil sands tailings is a potentially attractive proposition. However, the potential of this enormous mineral wealth cannot be exploited without substantial further research and development effort. 21 refs., 9 tabs., 5 figs.

  2. Wildlife inventory of oil sand leases 12, 13 and 34

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Skinner, D.L.

    1996-01-01

    Results of a preliminary study to assess wildlife abundance and distribution on Syncrude's proposed oil sand leases 12, 13 and 34 were presented. The objective of the study was to determine the relative abundance and habitat preferences of different wildlife species. Aerial and track count surveys were conducted in winter. The abundance of hooved animals was determined using an aerial survey of the entire Syncrude area which is composed of conifer-dominated lowlands. Results of the surveys showed that wildlife abundance in the study area was typical of the Fort McMurray region. Thirteen habitat types were identified, including 2 types of upland deciduous forest, mixed wood forest, 4 types of coniferous forest, 2 types of wetland community, 3 types of riparian community and cleared peatland. The distribution of mammals in the study area was presented. This included distribution of hooved animals, small herbivores, large carnivores, small carnivores, and other furbearers. The habitat utilization of each wildlife species was discussed. Several habitat types were preferred by at least one species. Very few species were associated with deciduous and mixed wood forest. It was noted that winter track counts may not be indicative of habitat preferences and distribution during other important periods such as breeding and natal seasons. 69 refs., 12 tabs., 13 figs

  3. Biodegradation of complex naphthenic acid mixtures and a probable link between congener profiles and aquatic toxicity

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Toor, N.; Franz, E.; Liber, K. [Saskatchewan Univ., Saskatoon, SK (Canada); Han, X.; Martin, J. [Alberta Univ., Edmonton, AB (Canada); MacKinnon, M. [Syncrude Canada Ltd., Edmonton, AB (Canada)

    2009-07-01

    This presentation reported on a study that evaluated the potential for the biodegradation and associated reduction in aquatic toxicity of oil sands process-affected waters (OSPWs) using flow-through laboratory wetland microcosms. Changes in the composition of naphthenic acids (NAs) over a period of 52 weeks were also identified. OSPWs from Syncrude and Suncor were used in the experiments. The 2 types of OSPWs were enriched with nitrogen and phosphorus and had short and long hydraulic retention times (HRTs) of 40 and 400 days. HPLC/QTOF analysis was used to track changes in NA mixture profiles in each treatment over time. The biodegradation of NAs in Suncor OSPW was considerably faster than that of Syncrude OSPW. The biodegradation of NAs in both sources of OSPW was enhanced under longer HRTs, but the influence of nutrient addition was minimal. NAs that had the lowest degrees of cyclization and lowest carbon number were found to degrade faster, which is consistent with previous trends observed for aerobic microbial degradation of NAs using laboratory incubations. The 3 most persistent fractions of NA homologues were also identified within the NA mixture fingerprint, which may explain the lack of correlation between the mostly unchanged toxicological response as measured by Microtox and the 78 per cent reduction in total NA concentration over the study period.

  4. Alberta Oil Sands Equity annual report, 1992-93. Partnership and progress in Alberta's oil sands development

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1993-01-01

    Alberta Oil Sands Equity (AOSE) manages the Alberta government's equity investments in oil sands and heavy oil projects. AOSE is a 16.74% participant in the Syncrude Project, a 10% participant in the OSLO (Other Six Leases Operation) Commercial Project and the OSLO New Ventures project, and a 24.17% participant in the Lloydminster Bi-Provincial Upgrader. Syncrude produces ca 12% of Canadian crude oil requirements, and AOSE's share yielded $44 million profit for 1992/93, slightly higher than the the $43.3 million the previous year. The OSLO Commercial Project is a proposed commercial oil sands plant with a mine site and extraction plant to be located north of Fort McMurray, and an upgrading facility to be situated north of Edmonton. Work on this project was suspended in early 1992. The OSLO New Ventures project will handle the exploration and development of the remaining five oil sands leases plus the southern portion of Lease 31. As of March 31, 1993, the project owners were considering a commercial demonstration project utilizing dredging and cold-water extraction processes. Two of the owners are unable to provide funding and discussions are under way to resolve the matter and move the program forward. The Lloydminster Bi-Provincial Upgrader opened Noveber 20, 1992, and production has reached 41,000 bbl/d, or 89% of design capacity. The upgrader will increase the value of heavy crude oil and thereby increase its demand. 5 figs., 3 tabs

  5. Health assessment of tree swallows (Tachycineta bicolor) on the oil sands using stress, immune function and growth indicators

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Harms, N.J.; Smits, J.E. [Saskatchewan Univ., Saskatoon, SK (Canada)

    2009-07-01

    Oil sand mining companies in Alberta continue to explore reclamation strategies for tailings water and are evaluating the ecological effectiveness of constructed wetlands for the bioremediation of liquid and solid tailings contaminated with naphthenic acids, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, and dissolved inorganic ions. The success of reclaimed sites and ecosystem health can be measured by examining health variables in wild tree swallows (Tachycineta bicolor) nesting on experimental wetlands receiving tailings or water from tailings ponds. This presentation reported on a study that measured clutch size, egg mass, and hatching and fledging success of 40 breeding pairs of tree swallows on 3 experimental wetlands on Suncor Energy Inc. and Syncrude Canada Ltd. oil sands leases. The Shallow Wetlands/Demonstration Pond (Syncrude), Consolidated Tailings and Natural Wetlands (Suncor) represent sites of different ages and different categories of wetland reclamation, notably mature, maturing, and newly reclaimed. Due to lack of nesting success on the selected reference site, the Shallow Wetlands/Demonstration Pond was selected as the reference site because it has undergone nearly complete bioremediation and had a very low level of contamination. Nestling growth and survival were measured in 199 tree swallows nestlings on the 3 experimental wetlands. Two mid-weight nestlings from 12 nest boxes on each study site were also examined for feather corticosterone levels and adaptive immune function.

  6. Production and Optimization of Direct Coal Liquefaction derived Low Carbon-Footprint Transportation Fuels

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Steven Markovich

    2010-06-30

    This report summarizes works conducted under DOE Contract No. DE-FC26-05NT42448. The work scope was divided into two categories - (a) experimental program to pretreat and refine a coal derived syncrude sample to meet transportation fuels requirements; (b) system analysis of a commercial scale direct coal liquefaction facility. The coal syncrude was derived from a bituminous coal by Headwaters CTL, while the refining study was carried out under a subcontract to Axens North America. The system analysis included H{sub 2} production cost via six different options, conceptual process design, utilities requirements, CO{sub 2} emission and overall plant economy. As part of the system analysis, impact of various H{sub 2} production options was evaluated. For consistence the comparison was carried out using the DOE H2A model. However, assumptions in the model were updated using Headwaters database. Results of Tier 2 jet fuel specifications evaluation by the Fuels & Energy Branch, US Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL/RZPF) located at Wright Patterson Air Force Base (Ohio) are also discussed in this report.

  7. One last boom : Alberta's rapidly expanding oil mines may be the largest and messiest industrial projects in Canadian history

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Laird, G.

    2001-01-01

    The bitumen deposits of Alberta, 2.5 trillion barrels of oil, of which 300 billion are considered recoverable, represent the greatest single petroleum resources of the world, based on surface and subsurface calculations. Four deposits, covering an area the size of New Brunswick, are located in the area stretching from Cold Lake to Lloydminster (east of Edmonton), the upper reaches of the Athabasca River east to the Peace River. The largest by far is the Athabasca deposit in the vicinity of Fort McMurray, spread over 4.3 million hectares. The deposit is at the centre of the biggest industrial expansion witnessed by the province. Since 1996, 38 billion dollars worth of new projects have been announced. It is estimated that by 2025, the bulk of the national oil production will originate from open-pit mines and underground wells around Fort McMurray. This oil boom has economic benefits for the population, from welders to real estate agents to stakeholders. The environmental effects are not as beneficial. Huge strip mines are being carved next to the Athabasca River, with great amounts of greenhouse gases emissions. The Suncor and Syncrude oil-sands plants combined represent the fourth largest carbon dioxide emission source in Canada. The development of these projects dramatically affects global warming. The nitrogen and sulphur emissions could also acidify lakes and soil in the region. The Suncor mine resulted from the first boom to hit Fort McMurray in 1964. The Syncrude mine is the result of the second boom which took place in 1973. In 1996, Suncor installed a sulphur scrubber system that removes 95 per cent of sulphur dioxide from the electricity and steam-generation plant. Suncor also invested in various projects, such as wind-power, rainforest cultivation and biomass generation. The volume of pollution increases as the operations expand, even if operations are cleaner. If no new gains in pollution control are achieved, it is expected that by 2015, the total

  8. Hydraulic characteristics of oil sands hydrotransport systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Coward, J. M. (Syncrude Canada Ltd., Research Centre, Edmonton, AB (Canada)); McDonnell, B. (Syncrude Canada Ltd., Edmonton, AB (Canada))

    1999-01-01

    Operating characteristics of a large-scale hydrotransport system which was installed at Syncrude in 1997 to transport oil sands to the processing plant about 4.5 km away is described. While in transit, the bitumen also undergoes conditioning. Some unique characteristics associated with the presence of bitumen have been observed . For example, headlosses in the horizontal pipeline were close to the water line for normal oil sands, but considerably higher for high grade oil sands. Pump head ratios and efficiency ratios were observed to be affected negatively by the presence of high grade oil sands. Slurry density had the same negative effect. The overall result of lower pump efficiencies and larger headloss with higher grade ore is a general degradation of system performance. The lesson to be learned from this observation is that when handling slurries with higher oil sand grades, it is essential to increase pumping capacity . 9 refs., 8 figs.

  9. Hydraulic characteristics of oil sands hydrotransport systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Coward, J. M. [Syncrude Canada Ltd., Research Centre, Edmonton, AB (Canada); McDonnell, B. [Syncrude Canada Ltd., Edmonton, AB (Canada)

    1999-10-01

    Operating characteristics of a large-scale hydrotransport system which was installed at Syncrude in 1997 to transport oil sands to the processing plant about 4.5 km away is described. While in transit, the bitumen also undergoes conditioning. Some unique characteristics associated with the presence of bitumen have been observed . For example, headlosses in the horizontal pipeline were close to the water line for normal oil sands, but considerably higher for high grade oil sands. Pump head ratios and efficiency ratios were observed to be affected negatively by the presence of high grade oil sands. Slurry density had the same negative effect. The overall result of lower pump efficiencies and larger headloss with higher grade ore is a general degradation of system performance. The lesson to be learned from this observation is that when handling slurries with higher oil sand grades, it is essential to increase pumping capacity . 9 refs., 8 figs.

  10. 2010 oil sands performance report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2011-07-01

    With the depletion of traditional energy resources and the rising demand for energy, oil sands have become an important energy resource for meeting energy needs. Oil sands are a mixture of water, sand, clay and bitumen which is recovered either through open pit mining or in situ drilling techniques. The bitumen is then converted into syncrude or sold to refineries for the production of gasoline, diesel or other products. Shell has oil sands operations in Alberta and the aim of this report is to present its 2010 performance in terms of CO2, water, tailings, land, and reclamation and engagement. This document covers several of Shell's operations in the Muskeg River and Jackpine mines, Scotford upgrader, Peace River, Orion, Seal, Cliffdale and Chipmunk. It provides useful information on Shell's oil sands performance to governments, environmental groups, First Nations, local communities and the public.

  11. Gas reactor international cooperative program. HTR-synfuel application assessment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1979-09-01

    This study assesses the technical, environmental and economic factors affecting the application of the High Temperature Gas-Cooled Thermal Reactor (HTR) to: synthetic fuel production; and displacement of fossil fuels in other industrial and chemical processes. Synthetic fuel application considered include coal gasification, direct coal liquefaction, oil shale processing, and the upgrading of syncrude to motor fuel. A wide range of other industrial heat applications was also considered, with emphasis on the use of the closed-loop thermochemical energy pipeline to supply heat to dispersed industrial users. In this application syngas (H 2 +CO 2 ) is produced at the central station HTR by steam reforming and the gas is piped to individual methanators where typically 1000 0 F steam is generated at the industrial user sites. The products of methanation (CH 4 + H 2 O) are piped back to the reformer at the central station HTR

  12. Gulf Canada Resources Limited 1998 annual report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1999-01-01

    A review of operations in 1998 and financial information from Gulf Canada Resources Limited is provided to keep shareholders abreast of company performance. Gulf Canada Resources Limited explores for, develops, produces and markets conventional and synthetic crude oil, natural gas and natural gas liquids. In 1998, the company's main operating centres were in western Canada (where it owns a nine per cent interest in the Syncrude Joint Venture), Indonesia, the North Sea and Australia. The report summarizes the company's energy resource activities, presents a detailed review of operations, and provides consolidated financial statements, and common share information. Although Gulf Canada Resources sold $ 1.2 billion worth of non-producing assets during the year, year end proved reserves of 838 million barrels of oil equivalent were less than ten per cent lower than a year earlier, reflecting reserve additions of 100 million barrels of oil equivalent. tabs., figs

  13. Structuring oil and gas joint ventures with aboriginal communities: conference papers conference

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1999-01-01

    The Insight Conference featured twelve articles on the following topics: 1 - researching and understanding your legal partners; II - an aboriginal game plan - a plan for success; III - legal and management issues relating to aboriginal ventures; IV - tax status of reserve-based aboriginal people and businesses under the Indian Act; v - first nations as exempt bodies under the Income Tax Act; V I - innovative options for structuring oil and gas leases and exploration permits on aboriginal lands; VII - joint venture and partnership arrangements; V III - the impact of taxation on aboriginal ventures; I X - bankruptcy and insolvency issues for on-reserve businesses; X - financing options for oil and gas ventures with first nations; XI - Syncrude's commitment to aboriginal development; and X II - structuring oil and gas ventures with aboriginal communities. Articles abstracted/indexed separately include: I, II, V I (2), V III, X, XI, and X II

  14. Application of TIE's in assessing toxicity associated with oil sands process waters

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    MacKinnon, M.

    1998-01-01

    The hot water digestion process which separates bitumen from oil sands produces large volumes of process-affected waters which are extremely toxic to aquatic organisms. At Syncrude Canada's northeastern Alberta plant, the toxic waters are contained on the site and none are discharged. Organic acids, hydrocarbons and salts are leached into the tailings waters. A toxicity identification evaluation (TIE) test was used to confirm the main contributors to the acute toxicity in these waters. A battery bioassay approach as well as field and laboratory testing was used to understand the source, pathway and duration of the toxicity. Bioassays helped in developing ways in which to mitigate toxicity issues in both reclamation and operational waters. It was demonstrated that natural bioremediation of process-affected waters can reduce acute and chronic toxicity. The long term reclamation impacts of these waters has yet to be determined

  15. Application of toxicity testing in the evaluation of reclamation options for oil sands fine tails

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nelson, L.R.; MacKinnon, M.; Gulley, J.R.

    1993-01-01

    The hot water process for the extraction of bitumen from oil sands leads to the production of large volumes of wastewater and the formation of a large inventory of fine clay tailings. This fine tailings material and its associated water are acutely toxic to various aquatic test organisms during bioassays. An overview is presented of toxicity testing at Syncrude and Suncor, the application of toxicity testing to fine tailings management, and the role in reclamation planning. The main acutely toxic component of the tailings is the polar organic acid fraction, specifically naphthanates. These naphthanates are readily degraded biologically by indigenous microbial populations. Toxicity testing is aimed at assessing the degree of both acute and chronic toxicity and the long term potential for the input of toxins into the environment from various proposed reclamation measures. 28 refs., 6 figs., 2 tabs

  16. Methanogens and sulfate-reducing bacteria in oil sands fine tailings waste

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Holowenko, F. M.; Fedorak, P. M. [Alberta Univ., Edmonton, AB (Canada). Dept. of Biological Sciences; MacKinnon, M. D. [Syncrude Canada Ltd, Edmonton, AB (Canada)

    2000-10-01

    In addition to adding to greenhouse gas emissions, the production of methane in the fine tailings zone of Syncrude Canada's lease near Fort McMurray, Alberta, threatens to affect the performance of the settling basin and impact on reclamation plans. Methanogenic as well as sulfur reducing bacteria have been found within the fine tailings zone of various oil sands waste settling basins. This paper presents a description of the methanogenic population in the fine tailings and evaluates the effects of sulfate additions and prolonged sample storage on methanogenesis with serum bottle microcosms. Methane yield values were determined from total methane produced in batch microcosms monitored for over a year. Results showed that at present two to five per cent of the fine tailings volume is present as methane. Methanogenesis was found to be inhibited by sulfate addition which stimulated bacterial competition for available substrate. 47 refs., 3 tabs., 4 figs.

  17. Making business less risky : the benefits of business interrelationships

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Auchinleck, D.

    1998-01-01

    The importance of business interrelationships for the success of the capital intensive and inherently risky petroleum industry was discussed. The major types of interrelationships include: (1) joint interest/ownership, (2) joint ventures, (3) production sharing contracts, and (4) strategic alliances. The makings of a successful and unsuccessful business relationship were also described. Examples of successful joint ventures, (Syncrude with Athabasca Oil Trust), joint ownerships (Gulf Oil with IPL), strategic alliances (Northrock Resources), and production sharing contracts (Gulf Oil with Talisman and Pertamina) were outlined by way of illustration. A failed joint venture between Gulf Oil, British Gas and Komineft to revitalize production and exploration in the Komi Republic (formerly part of the USSR) was also cited as an example of a situation where unsteady operational and political environments combined to bring about the failure of the project

  18. Gas reactor international cooperative program. HTR-synfuel application assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    1979-09-01

    This study assesses the technical, environmental and economic factors affecting the application of the High Temperature Gas-Cooled Thermal Reactor (HTR) to: synthetic fuel production; and displacement of fossil fuels in other industrial and chemical processes. Synthetic fuel application considered include coal gasification, direct coal liquefaction, oil shale processing, and the upgrading of syncrude to motor fuel. A wide range of other industrial heat applications was also considered, with emphasis on the use of the closed-loop thermochemical energy pipeline to supply heat to dispersed industrial users. In this application syngas (H/sub 2/ +CO/sub 2/) is produced at the central station HTR by steam reforming and the gas is piped to individual methanators where typically 1000/sup 0/F steam is generated at the industrial user sites. The products of methanation (CH/sub 4/ + H/sub 2/O) are piped back to the reformer at the central station HTR.

  19. Alberta Oil Sands Equity annual report, 1991-92. Partnership and progress in Alberta's oil sands development

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1992-01-01

    Alberta Oil Sands Equity (AOSE) manages the Alberta government's equity investments in oil sands and heavy oil projects. AOSE is a 16.74% participant in the Syncrude Project, a 10% participant in the OSLO (Other Six Leases Operation) Commercial Project and the OSLO New Ventures project, and a 24.17% participant in the Lloydminster Bi-Provincial Upgrader. Syncrude produces over 11% of Canadian crude oil requirements, and AOSE's share yielded $43.3 million profit for 1991/92, down significantly from the $82.1 million the previous year due to lower oil prices. The OSLO Commercial Project is a proposed commercial oil sands plant with a mine site and extraction plant to be located north of Fort McMurray, and an upgrading facility to be situated north of Edmonton. Work on this project was suspended in early 1992. The OSLO New Ventures project will handle the exploration and development of the remaining five oil sands leases plus the southern portion of Lease 31. As of March 31, 1992, the project owners were considering a commercial demonstration project utilizing dredging and cold-water extraction processes. Two of the owners are unable to provide funding and discussions are under way to resolve the matter and move the program forward. The Lloydminster Bi-Provincial Upgrader was nearly 90% complete in March 1992 and full startup is expected in November 1992; engineering work was completed in March 1991. The upgrader will increase the value of heavy crude oil and thereby increase its demand. 4 figs., 4 tabs

  20. Fluidized-bed retorting of Colorado oil shale: Topical report. [None

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Albulescu, P.; Mazzella, G.

    1987-06-01

    In support of the research program in converting oil shale into useful forms of energy, the US Department of Energy is developing systems models of oil shale processing plants. These models will be used to project the most attractive combination of process alternatives and identify future direction for R and D efforts. With the objective of providing technical and economic input for such systems models, Foster Wheeler was contracted to develop conceptual designs and cost estimates for commercial scale processing plants to produce syncrude from oil shales via various routes. This topical report summarizes the conceptual design of an integrated oil shale processing plant based on fluidized bed retorting of Colorado oil shale. The plant has a nominal capacity of 50,000 barrels per operating day of syncrude product, derived from oil shale feed having a Fischer Assay of 30 gallons per ton. The scope of the plant encompasses a grassroots facility which receives run of the mine oil shale, delivers product oil to storage, and disposes of the processed spent shale. In addition to oil shale feed, the battery limits input includes raw water, electric power, and natural gas to support plant operations. Design of the individual processing units was based on non-confidential information derived from published literature sources and supplemented by input from selected process licensors. The integrated plant design is described in terms of the individual process units and plant support systems. The estimated total plant investment is similarly detailed by plant section and an estimate of the annual operating requirements and costs is provided. In addition, the process design assumptions and uncertainties are documented and recommendations for process alternatives, which could improve the overall plant economics, are discussed.

  1. Waste products of oilsands mine inhibit sex steroids in exposed fish

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lister, A.; Van Der Kraak, G.J.; Nero, V.; Farwell, A.J.; Dixon, D.G.

    2002-01-01

    Mature fine tailings (MFT) and tailing pond water (TPW) are two of the wastes generated by oil sand mining operations at Syncrude Canada Ltd. in northern Alberta. A study was conducted to determine the impact of these wastes on reproductive steroid production in sexually mature goldfish. MFT is a toxic aqueous suspension consisting of organic acids, bitumen and metals. TPW is a saline solution consisting of both organic and inorganic contaminants. Goldfish were examined for 19 days in 3 of Syncrude's specially designed experimental ponds which were lined with or without MFT and capped with or without TPW. The study showed that plasma levels of testosterone and 17 β-estradiol in male and female fish in ponds with MFT but no TPW and ponds with both MFT and TPW were much lower compared to fish in a control pond with neither MFT nor TPW. The study also involved in vitro testis and ovarian incubations on the fish to determine potential differences in basal steroid production levels and how they react to gonadotropin. Results showed that gonadal tissues of fish from all ponds behaved similarly to the gonadotropin, thereby suggesting that under normal conditions, the oilsands wastes do not affect the ability of gonads to produce steroids. Compared to the control pond, both male and female fish from the pond with both MFT and TPW had significantly lower basal levels of testosterone, suggesting that the steroid inhibition could be caused at a site within the gonad. It was concluded that waste products of oilsands mining disrupt the reproductive endocrine system in goldfish

  2. A cost comparison study of open pit mining vs. in situ assisted gravity drainage

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    McIntosh, J.; Luhning, R.W.

    1991-01-01

    The twin-well steam assisted gravity drainage (SAGD) process has resulted in breakthrough technology to access previously uneconomical deep-seated oil sands reserves in Alberta, and to provide a very cost-effective and environmentally acceptable method for extracting bitumen from reserves having a minimum of 30 m overburden. In the evaluation of new or improved bitumen recovery technologies for its new North Mine, Syncrude Canada has recognized that SAGD was a potential alternate to the current open pit mining and hot water extraction process. A study was conducted to compare and evaluate bitumen recovery by the two schemes at the North Mine site, scheduled to begin operations in 1996, for the reserves under Syncrude's tailings pond, and at a new grassroots area. Study description and analysis of results are presented for the grassroots case. The assumptions and mining/recovery processes used for the mining or SAGD method are detailed and the advantages and drawbacks of each scheme are noted. Results show that the SAGD unit supply costs are projected to be proportionately lower than the corresponding open pit mining/hot water extraction (OP/X) cost, using a 20-y project life. A sensitivity analysis indicates that the SAGD process is more sensitive to natural gas costs, while the OP/X scheme is more sensitive to power costs. The SAGD process is much less labor-intensive than OP/X and has obvious advantages in terms of tailings disposal and post-mining reclamation. In addition, the underground nature of SAGD operation eliminates adverse effects of the weather on working conditions. 11 figs

  3. Fuel quality processing study, volume 1

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ohara, J. B.; Bela, A.; Jentz, N. E.; Syverson, H. T.; Klumpe, H. W.; Kessler, R. E.; Kotzot, H. T.; Loran, B. L.

    1981-01-01

    A fuel quality processing study to provide a data base for an intelligent tradeoff between advanced turbine technology and liquid fuel quality, and also, to guide the development of specifications of future synthetic fuels anticipated for use in the time period 1985 to 2000 is given. Four technical performance tests are discussed: on-site pretreating, existing refineries to upgrade fuels, new refineries to upgrade fuels, and data evaluation. The base case refinery is a modern Midwest refinery processing 200,000 BPD of a 60/40 domestic/import petroleum crude mix. The synthetic crudes used for upgrading to marketable products and turbine fuel are shale oil and coal liquids. Of these syncrudes, 50,000 BPD are processed in the existing petroleum refinery, requiring additional process units and reducing petroleum feed, and in a new refinery designed for processing each syncrude to produce gasoline, distillate fuels, resid fuels, and turbine fuel, JPGs and coke. An extensive collection of synfuel properties and upgrading data was prepared for the application of a linear program model to investigate the most economical production slate meeting petroleum product specifications and turbine fuels of various quality grades. Technical and economic projections were developed for 36 scenarios, based on 4 different crude feeds to either modified existing or new refineries operated in 2 different modes to produce 7 differing grades of turbine fuels. A required product selling price of turbine fuel for each processing route was calculated. Procedures and projected economics were developed for on-site treatment of turbine fuel to meet limitations of impurities and emission of pollutants.

  4. Isolation and characterization of acutely toxic fractions in oil sands wastewater

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Verbeek, A. [Chemex Labs Alberta Inc., Edmonton, Alberta (Canada); Mackay, W. [Univ. of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta (Canada); MacKinnon, M. [Syncrude Canada Ltd., Edmonton, Alberta (Canada)

    1995-12-31

    Extraction of oil from oil sand using the hot water flotation method results in the production of large volumes of wastewater that are acutely toxic to aquatic organisms. At Syncrude Canada Ltd. and Suncor Oil Sands Group Inc., this wastewater is stored in large tailings ponds that must eventually be reclaimed. The acute toxicity of these wastewaters was assessed and the acutely toxic fractions were identified. Samples were collected from the surface and fine tails zones of the Syncrude and Suncor tailings ponds during the summers of 1991 and 1992. The Microtox bioassay was used to assess the acute toxicity before and after various treatments. Where significant reductions in acute toxicity were found, further acute toxicity tests were carried out using Daphnia magna and rainbow trout. The Microtox IC{sub 50} of all centrifuged tailings pond water samples varied between 26.5 and 46%. Daphnia LC{sub 50}s varied between 76 and 98% and a rainbow trout LC{sub 50} was 12.5 %. Organic compounds that have a non-polar component, as removed by solid phase extraction with C{sub 18} sorbent, accounted for all the acute toxicity (100%) of all samples. Organic ``acids``, as removed by precipitation at pH 2.5, also accounted for all the acute toxicity (100%) of all samples except those from pond 1A of Suncor. In pond 1A, organic ``acids`` accounted for approximately 55--60% of the acute toxicity, nonpolar organic volatile compounds accounted for approximately 20--35% and the balance of the acute toxicity was due to non-polar organic compounds that were neither volatile nor organic ``acids``, as removed by precipitation at pH 2.5.

  5. Technical frontier : where creativity is a matter of survival

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fergusson, D.

    1999-01-01

    The impacts that technological advances in oil sand mining have had on the heavy oil industry were discussed. At a July 1999 oil sands workshop an assembly of engineers from various technology firms discussed how technology has made heavy oil production viable. New technology has made it possible to cut oil sand production costs in half. Bitumen, which was once viewed as an uncompetitive resource, has been made competitive through innovations such as steam assisted gravity drainage (SAGD) and Vapex. Non-thermal production such as methods involving solvents rather than heat to make bitumen and heavy oil flow have also contributed to the success of oil sand mining. Both Syncrude and Suncor employ the SAGD process which makes use of two parallel horizontal wells. In this process, steam is injected into the top well to heat the oil making it flow and drop to the second well which recovers it. Syncrude's use of hydrotransport as a means of moving oil sands ore by pipeline has improved the energy efficiency at oil sand mining facilities which previously used the dragline method. Another technological innovation is a new water distillation system developed by Aqua Pure Inc. The new system uses a process of heating, reheating and compressing water vapour until the contaminants are separated from the water. The Taciuk processor, developed in Alberta, is currently being used in Australia. This thermal recovery process makes use of spent shale to provide heat. Canadian technology, particularly in the oil-sand development is in demand internationally. SAGD wells are in demand in Venezuela, Australia and Albania. 1 fig

  6. Direct Coal -to-Liquids (CTL) for Jet Fuel Using Biomass-Derived Solvents

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chauhan, Satya P. [Battelle, Columbus, OH (United States); Garbark, Daniel B. [Battelle, Columbus, OH (United States); Taha, Rachid [Battelle, Columbus, OH (United States); Peterson, Rick [Battelle, Columbus, OH (United States)

    2017-09-30

    Battelle has demonstrated a novel and potentially breakthrough technology for a direct coal-to-liquids (CTL) process for producing jet fuel using biomass-derived coal solvents (bio-solvents). The Battelle process offers a significant reduction in capital and operating costs and a substantial reduction in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, without requiring carbon capture and storage (CCS). The results of the project are the advancement of three steps of the hybrid coal/biomass-to-jet fuel process to the technology readiness level (TRL) of 5. The project objectives were achieved over two phases. In Phase 1, all three major process steps were explored and refined at bench-scale, including: (1) biomass conversion to high hydrogen-donor bio-solvent; (2) coal dissolution in biomass-derived bio-solvent, without requiring molecular H2, to produce a synthetic crude (syncrude); and (3) two-stage catalytic hydrotreating/hydrogenation of syncrude to jet fuel and other distillates. In Phase 2, all three subsystems of the CTL process were scaled up to a pre-pilot scale, and an economic analysis was carried out. A total of over 40 bio-solvents were identified and prepared. The most unique attribute of Battelle’s bio-solvents is their ability to provide much-needed hydrogen to liquefy coal and thus increase its hydrogen content so much that the resulting syncrude is liquid at room temperature. Based on the laboratory-scale testing with bituminous coals from Ohio and West Virginia, a total of 12 novel bio-solvent met the goal of greater than 80% coal solubility, with 8 bio-solvents being as good as or better than a well-known but expensive hydrogen-donor solvent, tetralin. The Battelle CTL process was then scaled up to 1 ton/day (1TPD) at a pre-pilot facility operated in Morgantown, WV. These tests were conducted, in part, to produce enough material for syncrude-upgrading testing. To convert the Battelle-CTL syncrude into a form suitable as a blending stock for jet

  7. Heavy mineral potential of Athabasca oil sands

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Coward, J.; Oxenford, J. [Syncrude Canada Ltd., Edmonton, AB (Canada)

    1997-11-01

    There are three large scale production operations in the Athabasca oil sands: (1) Syncrude, a surface mining plant that has been operating since 1978 at a current synthetic oil production rate of over 205,000 barrels per day, (2) the Suncor operation, also a surface mining plant, in operation since 1967 and producing about 80,000 barrels per day of synthetic oil and (3) Esso`s Cold Lake operation, an in-situ operation that extracts the oil from the deposits in the ground and produces about 95,000 barrels per day of bitumen. The presence of heavy metals in the Athabasca oil sands was discussed, emphasizing current trends in the heavy mineral industry and various conditions and options for the development of this resource. The typical heavy minerals include magnetite, ilmenite, leucoxene, rutile, zircon, monazite, sillimanite, kyanite, and garnet. Several potentially attractive investment options exist to develop this byproduct of oil sands mining. The potential impact on the heavy mineral industry that may result from the development of heavy minerals from oil sands was also explored. 23 refs., 10 tabs., 5 figs.

  8. Application of dry stackable tailings technologies : providing the base for reclamation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mikula, R.J. [Natural Resources Canada, Devon, AB (Canada). CANMET Energy Technology Centre

    2010-07-01

    The tailings containment structures are some of the largest man made features on the planet. This presentation demonstrated that dry stackable tailings technology may reduce the volume of the accumulated fluid fine tailings. Dry stackable tailings can contribute to boreal forest reclamation and reduce water requirement from the Athabasca River. Much of the water used for the production of each barrel of bitumen is recycled. The water is tied up in the pore spaces of the mineral sand, silt, and clay component which forms the mature fine tailings (MFT) that are contained behind large dykes. Syncrude and Suncor have used a wide variety of technologies to create a dry stackable tailings from this fluid fine tailings substrate. The availability of dry stackable tailings will open options for reclamation strategies that end with the original wetlands or boreal forest. Some of the tailings management options that would lead to a dry stackable tailings naturally also significantly decrease the barrels of water lost with each barrel of bitumen production. These options were discussed along with an analysis of their impact on recycle and pore water quality and quantity. There is an opportunity to remove residual bitumen during the transfer of fluid fine tailings to recover water and create dry stackable tailings. If this bitumen removal is extensive enough, it might be possible to use the dry stackable tailings directly as a reclamation material. tabs., figs.

  9. Sulfur biogeochemistry of oil sands composite tailings

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Warren, Lesley; Stephenson, Kate [Earth Sciences, McMaster University (Canada)], email: warrenl@mcmaster.ca; Penner, Tara [Syncrude Environmental Research (Canada)

    2011-07-01

    This paper discusses the sulfur biogeochemistry of oil sands composite tailings (CT). The Government of Alberta is accelerating reclamation activities on composite tailings. As a CT pilot reclamation operation, Syncrude is currently constructing the first freshwater fen. Minor unpredicted incidents with H2S gas released from the dewatering process associated with these reclamations have been reported. The objective of this study is to ascertain the connection between microbial activity and H2S generation within CT and to assess the sulfur biogeochemistry of untreated and treated (fen) CT over seasonal and annual timescales. The microbial geochemical interactions taking place are shown using a flow chart. CT is composed of gypsum, sand, clay and organics like naphthenic acids and bitumen. Sulfur and Fe cycling in mining systems and their microbial activities are presented. The chemistry and the processes involved within CT are also given along with the results. It can be said that the diverse Fe and S metabolizing microorganisms confirm the ecology involved in H2S dynamics.

  10. Implementation commitments on environmental policies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hyndman, A.

    1996-01-01

    This presentation dealt with trends in industrial performance and their impacts on the environment, using examples from the oil sands industry. Global climate change and other global environmental concerns were used as examples. Based on the author's assessment, the trend in industrial performance has been towards improved, more efficient performance with reduced environmental impacts. Oil sands production is increasingly more efficient as shown by improved sulphur recovery, reduced benzene losses to tailings, reduced flaring emissions (down by 75 per cent since 1990) and reduced hydrocarbon losses. Based largely on research and development, Syncrude is projecting continued success in reducing energy intensity and significant increases in the number of barrels produced per barrel equivalent of thermal energy used. With regard to climate change, the author expressed the view that environmental groups tend to exaggerate the probable extent and consequences of climate change, and prescribe costly, and frequently counterproductive, remedial measures. He referred to the Leipzig Declaration which failed to find a credible scientific basis for climate change. It warned that '...in a world in which poverty is the greatest social pollutant, any restriction on energy use that inhibits economic growth should be viewed with caution'. The author suggested that Canadians should continue to search for increasingly more efficient resource extraction and manufacturing technologies, promote high standards for export expertise and be in the forefront towards consensus building on suitable goals and cost effective means to attain them

  11. An improved PCA method with application to boiler leak detection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Xi; Marquez, Horacio J; Chen, Tongwen; Riaz, Muhammad

    2005-07-01

    Principal component analysis (PCA) is a popular fault detection technique. It has been widely used in process industries, especially in the chemical industry. In industrial applications, achieving a sensitive system capable of detecting incipient faults, which maintains the false alarm rate to a minimum, is a crucial issue. Although a lot of research has been focused on these issues for PCA-based fault detection and diagnosis methods, sensitivity of the fault detection scheme versus false alarm rate continues to be an important issue. In this paper, an improved PCA method is proposed to address this problem. In this method, a new data preprocessing scheme and a new fault detection scheme designed for Hotelling's T2 as well as the squared prediction error are developed. A dynamic PCA model is also developed for boiler leak detection. This new method is applied to boiler water/steam leak detection with real data from Syncrude Canada's utility plant in Fort McMurray, Canada. Our results demonstrate that the proposed method can effectively reduce false alarm rate, provide effective and correct leak alarms, and give early warning to operators.

  12. Upgrading oil sands bitumen with FLUID COKING and FLEXICOKING technologies

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kamienski, P.; Phillips, G. [ExxonMobil Research and Engineering Co., Fairfax, VA (United States); McKnight, C.; Rumball, B. [Syncrude Canada Ltd., Calgary, AB (Canada)

    2009-07-01

    This presentation described EMRE's Fluid Coking and Flexicoking technologies that are well suited for upgrading Alberta's heavy crudes and oil sands bitumen into pipelineable crudes or synthetic crudes, which can be further processed into transportation fuels. The Fluid Coking technology uses a fluidized bed reactor that thermally converts the heavy oils into light gases, liquids and coke. The metals and much of the sulphur are concentrated in the coke. Combustion of the coke provides process heat and the remaining coke is sold or stored on site for later recovery. Syncrude Canada currently operates 3 Fluid Coking units in northern Alberta. Flexicoking extends fluid coking by integrating air gasification to produce a carbon monoxide/hydrogen rich fuel gas that helps meet fuel and energy requirements of bitumen recovery and upgrading. The yields of light gas and liquids are similar to those of the Fluid Coking process. The partial combustion of coke provides the process heat for the thermal conversion and gasification steps. The remaining coke is gasified and desulphurized using Flexsorb technology. At present, there are 5 Flexicoking units in operation around the world. Interest in the technology is growing, particularly in locations with large demand for clean fuel or electricity. It is also suitable for steam assisted gravity drainage (SAGD) operations in Alberta. This presentation outlined the operating principles of the Flexicoking integrated gasification system and compared it with more expensive oxygen gasification processes. tabs., figs.

  13. Hydrogeology baseline study Aurora Mine

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1996-01-01

    A baseline hydrogeologic study was conducted in the area of Syncrude's proposed Aurora Mine in order to develop a conceptual regional hydrogeologic model for the area that could be used to understand groundwater flow conditions. Geologic information was obtained from over 2,000 coreholes and from data obtained between 1980 and 1996 regarding water level for the basal aquifer. A 3-D numerical groundwater flow model was developed to provide quantitative estimates of the potential environmental impacts of the proposed mining operations on the groundwater flow system. The information was presented in the context of a regional study area which encompassed much of the Athabasca Oil Sands Region, and a local study area which was defined by the lowlands of the Muskeg River Basin. Characteristics of the topography, hydrology, climate, geology, and hydrogeology of the region are described. The conclusion is that groundwater flow in the aquifer occurs mostly in a westerly direction beneath the Aurora Mine towards its inferred discharge location along the Athabasca River. Baseflow in the Muskeg River is mostly related to discharge from shallow surficial aquifers. Water in the river under baseflow conditions was fresh, of calcium-carbonate type, with very little indication of mineralization associated with deeper groundwater in the Aurora Mine area. 44 refs., 5 tabs., 31 figs

  14. Predicted costs of environmental controls for a commercial oil shale industry. Volume 1. An engineering analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nevens, T.D.; Culbertson, W.J. Jr.; Wallace, J.R.; Taylor, G.C.; Jovanovich, A.P.; Prien, C.H.; Hicks, R.E.; Probstein, R.F.; Domahidy, G.

    1979-07-01

    The pollution control costs for a commercial oil shale industry were determined in a joint effort by Denver Research Institute, Water Purification Associates of Cambridge, and Stone and Webster Engineering of Boston and Denver. Four commercial oil shale processes were considered. The results in terms of cost per barrel of syncrude oil are predicted to be as follows: Paraho Process, $0.67 to $1.01; TOSCO II Process, $1.43 to $1.91; MIS Process, $2.02 to $3.03; and MIS/Lurgi-Ruhrgas Process, $1.68 to $2.43. Alternative pollution control equipment and integrated pollution control strategies were considered and optimal systems selected for each full-scale plant. A detailed inventory of equipment (along with the rationale for selection), a detailed description of control strategies, itemized costs and predicted emission levels are presented for each process. Capital and operating cost data are converted to a cost per barrel basis using detailed economic evaluation procedures. Ranges of cost are determined using a subjective self-assessment of uncertainty approach. An accepted methodology for probability encoding was used, and cost ranges are presented as subjective probability distributions. Volume I presents the detailed engineering results. Volume II presents the detailed analysis of uncertainty in the predicted costs.

  15. Yellow perch embryo-larval survival and growth in surface waters associated with oil-sands mining

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Peters, L.E.; Heuvel, M.R. van den; Dixon, D.G. [Univ. of Waterloo, Ontario (Canada); Power, M. [Univ. of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Manitoba (Canada); Boerger, H.; MacKinnon, M.D.; Meer, T. Van [Syncrude Canada, Fort McMurray, Alberta (Canada)

    1995-12-31

    As part of their land reclamation strategy, Syncrude Canada Ltd. is currently developing environmentally acceptable tailings disposal methods. Fine tailings, a suspension of clay and residual bitumen, is the waste product from oil sands extraction. Fine-tailings contain naphthenic acids, a group of saturated aliphatic and alicyclic carboxylic acids, which occur naturally in petroleum and are partly responsible for the toxicity of process water. The wet landscape method involves covering fine tails with a layer of water such that a self-sustaining ecosystem can be established. A 5 ha demonstration pond with a bottom of fine-tailings was constructed and stocked with yellow perch for experimental purposes. Two other reclaimed ponds formed with oil-sands overburden material were also stocked with perch. Adult perch sampled in the fall of 1995 from the experimental and reclaimed ponds exhibited a 2-fold induction of MFO activity compared to the source lake; indicating organic compound exposure. Perch from one of the reclaimed ponds showed significantly reduced circulating reproductive hormone levels, gonad size and smaller ovarian follicles. Reproductive parameters were not different between the source lake and the remaining ponds. Paired lab and field experiments were conducted to determine if contaminants present would be detrimental to egg viability and development of larvae either through direct exposure of spawned eggs or indirectly by effecting oogenesis. An early life stage toxicity test was also performed using commercially available naphthenic acid standard. Endpoints measured were percent fertilization, percent hatch, mortality, deformities, timing of developmental periods and larval growth.

  16. Gulf Canada's corporate journey includes the Strachan plant and its innovative environmental clean-up

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anon.

    1996-01-01

    Gulf Canada Resources Limited traces its origins to the British-American Oil Company in Ontario established in 1906. By its 100th anniversary in 2006, Gulf Canada wants to become the world's pre-eminent oil and gas company, by finding more oil and gas, and doing it better, and producing more oil and gas and doing it for less than any other oil company. Some recent accomplishments towards that end have been recounted: early in 1996 the company began producing 80,000 barrels per day of Alberta's royalty crude oil; spent $250 million to purchase Pennzoil's Western Canada oil and gas assets; acquired a 9.03 per cent interest in Syncrude Canada; announced a huge find of oil and gas in the Corridor Block Gas Project in Indonesia; acquired 400,000 acres in North Dakota, Wyoming, Montana and Utah for exploration; and celebrated the 25th anniversary of its Strachan sour gas plant, located just southwest of Rocky Mountain House. Today the plant has the capacity to process 275 million cu. ft. per day of sour gas, and is licensed to process gas from 15 fields in the area. It would appear that Gulf Canada is making giant steps towards achieving its self-imposed goals even before 2006

  17. The use of stable isotopes to trace oil sands constituents

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Farwell, A.J.; Nero, V.; Dixon, D.G.

    2002-01-01

    A study was conducted to determine the biological effects of oil sands mining operations on aquatic ecosystems. The study focused on the Athabasca oil sand deposit, the largest of 4 deposits in northern Alberta. In particular, the study examined the cycling of oil sand constituents in Benthic invertebrates collected from test pits at Syncrude Canada Ltd.. The invertebrates were similar in size, but different in the quantity of process-affected water or mature fine tailings containing residual bitumen. Dragonflies and damselflies in particular, showed trends of depletion for the carbon 13 isotope and enrichment in nitrogen 15 isotope in pits where levels of process affected water was high. The depletion of carbon 13 isotope suggests that oil sand constituents assimilate into the benthic food chain. The greatest carbon 13 depletion, which was approximately 27 per cent, was found to be in test pits with high turbidity. This implies that oil sands constituents degrade microbially instead of by photosynthetic production. All benthic invertebrate group demonstrated an incremental enrichment in nitrogen 15 isotope from the control pit to the pit with greatest levels of mature fine tailings

  18. Petroleum coke and plants : impact on growth and physiology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nakata, C.; Renault, S.

    2006-01-01

    Petroleum coke, a by-product of the oil sand processing industry in Alberta, contains fairly significant concentrations of arsenic, boron, iron, nickel, sulphur, titanium, and vanadium embedded in a carbon matrix. Through weathering and biological degradation, these components may be released from coke and absorbed by plant tissues where they may restrict growth and interfere with physiological activities. In order to study the effects of petroleum coke on plants, several greenhouse experiments were conducted by growing Agropyron trachycaulum, Deschampsia caespitosa, Calamagrostis canadensis, Oryzopsis hymenoides, Triticum aestivum, Cornus sericea and Fragaria virginiana for 3 months in control soil, Syncrude Canada Ltd. coke; and Suncor Energy Inc.coke. It was found that in all coke treated plants, shoot biomass was lower than controls. Root biomass followed this same trend, with the exception of Triticum aestivum. Several results were presented in this study abstract. It was concluded that the short term effects of coke on plants are most likely due to water stress and nutrient deficiency and that further research is needed

  19. Energy and water exchange from a saline-sodic overburden restoration cover, Fort McMurray, Alberta

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Carey, S.

    2006-01-01

    The Canadian oil sand mining industry takes responsibility for restoring mining areas to an equivalent level that existed before mining occurred. During this process, the surface-vegetation-atmosphere continuum is dramatically altered, creating few similarities to the boreal forest that existed prior to mining. Using the eddy covariance method, a study of the integrated salt and water balance of a saline-sodic overburden pile at Syncrude Canada Ltd.'s Mildred Lake mine north of Fort McMurray, Alberta was undertaken in order to measure the surface energy balance for three summers (2003 - 2005) with different climatic and phenological conditions. The objective of this study was to document how evapotranspiration and energy partitioning varied inter-annually during the growing season atop the restoration cover and to relate the portioning of energy at the surface to environmental and physiological variables. The paper described the site and measurement specifics and also presented the results and discussion. Results were organized under the following topics: climate; soil moisture and suction; leaf area index and vegetation; surface energy balance; evapotranspiration; and controls on evapotranspiration. It was concluded that results from this study have important implications for recovery strategies, as the availability water for plant growth, the movement and migration of salts and percolating water for deep drainage all depend on accurate quantification of evapotranspiration. 9 refs., 1 tab

  20. Microorganisms in oil sands tailings ponds influence the properties and behaviour of mature fine tailings

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bressler, D.; Cardenas, M.; Fedorak, P.M.; Guigard, S.; Gupta, R.; Siddique, T.; Foght, J. [Alberta Univ., Edmonton, AB (Canada)

    2010-07-01

    Large numbers of microorganisms are present in the mature fine tailings produced during oil sands operations. Many different types of microbes grow in communities that compete and cooperate. Most of the microorganisms are anaerobic, and include sulfate-reducing bacteria, nitrate-reducing bacteria, iron-reducing bacteria, fermenters, and methanogens. The microbes produce approximately 40 million litres of greenhouse gases (GHGs), methane (CH{sub 4}) and carbon dioxide (CO{sub 2}). All tailings ponds are microbiologically different. The gases are produced by microbial waste products and have been observed to degrade fugitive naphtha in fresh tailings at a Syncrude oil sands facility. At a Shell-Albian Sands facility, the microbes degraded into trisodium citrate. The microbes can aid in the settling of tailings. Agricultural byproducts have been added to tailings in order to demonstrate methane production. However, flow through systems are required to accelerate the biodensification of tailings ponds, and further studies are needed to ensure that the quality of recovered water is maintained for re-use. Various microbe degradation processes and models were presented. tabs., figs.

  1. Design, fabrication, operation and Aspen simulation of oil shale pyrolysis and biomass gasification process using a moving bed downdraft reactor

    Science.gov (United States)

    Golpour, Hassan

    Energy is the major facilitator of the modern life. Every developed and developing economy requires access to advanced sources of energy to support its growth and prosperity. Declining worldwide crude oil reserves and increasing energy needs has focused attention on developing existing unconventional fossil fuels like oil shale and renewable resources such as biomass. Sustainable, renewable and reliable resources of domestically produced biomass comparing to wind and solar energy is a sensible motivation to establish a small-scale power plant using biomass as feed to supply electricity demand and heat for rural development. The work in Paper I focuses on the possibility of water pollution from spent oil shale which should be studied before any significant commercial production is attempted. In Paper II, the proposed Aspen models for oil shale pyrolysis is to identify the key process parameters for the reactor and optimize the rate of production of syncrude from oil shale. The work in Paper III focuses on (1) Design and operation of a vertical downdraft reactor, (2) Establishing an optimum operating methodology and parameters to maximize syngas production through process testing. Finally in Paper IV, a proposed Aspen model for biomass gasification simulates a real biomass gasification system discussed in Paper III.

  2. Petro-Canada 1997 annual report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1998-01-01

    Petro-Canada is a dominant player in the petroleum industry in Western Canada as well as on the Grand Banks offshore Newfoundland. This report presents a review of operations, provides detailed statements of the corporation's finances, and a wealth of information of interest to shareholders. The report states that in 1997 Petro-Canada achieved record financial results, following a dramatic turnaround over the past five years. Net earnings for 1997 were $306 million, a $59 million increase over 1996. The company's share price appreciated 34 per cent in 1997 and was one of the most heavily traded stocks in Canada. The company plans to maximize shareholder value by reducing its interests in conventional oil from mature fields in western Canada and by re-investing the proceeds in natural gas development. Petro-Canada is also committed to an expansion that will double production at the Syncrude oil sands plant over the next decade and has tested large in-situ oil sands resources for potential development in northeastern Alberta. On the Atlantic coast too, Petro-Canada is delivering leadership with increasing production from Hibernia, and final approvals in place to proceed with development of the Terra Nova field. International operations are also contributing to the Corporation's profitability by delivering new production from oil fields offshore Norway and from the Sahara Desert in North Africa. tabs., figs

  3. Role of the contract workforce in the oilpatch

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wake, G.

    1999-01-01

    The role of a staffing agency such as the Design Group Staffing Services Inc. was described. The Agency was founded in 1976. Today, it is the dominant agency in western Canada that provides technical, industrial, information technology and office services to its customers in the petroleum industry including Bantrel, Syncrude, Suncor, Delta, Nova, TransAlta, PanCanadian. A series of overhead viewgraphs accompanied this presentation which dealt with the all aspects of the contract workforce. A contractor was described as being a temporary worker and not a company employee. A 1996 survey has shown that the largest reported users of contract personnel were petroleum and petrochemical industries. This is partly due to the cyclical aspect of the petroleum industry in western Canada. The advantages and disadvantages of contract workforce were also described. The main reason for using contract workers is to provide organizations with the flexibility to meet fluctuations in demand. Other advantages include the ability to meet deadlines, minimize training time, eliminate legal liabilities, and reduce payroll and administration costs. Two of the disadvantages are the potential for high turnover and loyalty issues. The procedures and legalities of hiring contractors were also described. The importance of clearly distinguishing between a contract of employment (an employee) and a contract for service (an independent contractor) was also emphasized. 2 figs

  4. Environmental impact assessment - baseline noise survey and noise impact assessment for Aurora Mine

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yee, S.

    1996-01-01

    A noise impact assessment was conducted at Syncrude's proposed Aurora Mine site to comply with Alberta Energy and Utilities Board (AEUB) Noise Control Directive ID 94-4. Noise assessments were conducted near a major noise source, i.e. the hydraulic and electric shovels. Noise levels at 50 meters away from the source varied from 72.3 to 79.7 dBA. The worst case noise level was 75 dBA measured at 100 meters away from a hydraulic shovel. This assessment was used to calculate the predicted design sound level from a noise source at the nearest or most impacted occupied dwelling. Two cabins located near the access road and along Kearl Lake respectively, were identified as the most impacted and nearest dwellings to the mine site. The predicted sound level at one cabin was 43 dBA, and 55 dBA at the other. Fort McKay was also assessed because it is the nearest community to the mine site. The sound level at Fort McKay was predicted to be 34 dBA. These results indicate that the sound level from Aurora Mine is not in compliance with the AEUB Noise Control Directive. Attenuation measures are required to reduce the noise to acceptable level at Cabin A and B. Predicted sound level at Fort McKay is lower than the permitted sound level

  5. Frigid country : simple safeguards can prevent serious injuries and equipment failures for oilsands producers in a place where hot water turns to instant ice as it hits the air

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bentein, J.

    2010-12-15

    This article discussed the occupational safety challenges facing oilsands developers operating in northern Canada, where minus 50 degrees Celsius is the norm during the winter season. Companies such as Devon Energy, Husky Energy, Shell Canada, Syncrude and Cenovus Energy recognize that worker injuries are not the biggest weather-related issue, but people getting sick during flu season is a huge issue. Worker information programs are in place to remind workers of the steps to take before going outside. Because it is dark for much longer in the winter, workers have to change their work and driving habits and are offered defensive driving courses. All trucks are equipped with emergency kits with flares, blankets, food and other protection. Injured or sick workers in remote locations must be transported to hospitals in urban centres by high cost medevac helicopters. Regulations in Saskatchewan and Alberta mandate that workers be given adequate breaks from cold and are provided with gear and clothing to shield them from extreme weather. Employees are in communication with supervisors at all times by cellphones and global positioning systems. In addition to occupational safety, the industry uses certain grades of steel for equipment to hold up well in cold weather, and insulating material is used in pipelines to protect against condensation. 3 figs.

  6. Western states enhanced oil shale recovery program: Shale oil production facilities conceptual design studies report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    1989-08-01

    This report analyzes the economics of producing syncrude from oil shale combining underground and surface processing using Occidental's Modified-In-Situ (MIS) technology and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory's (LLNL) Hot Recycled Solids (HRS) retort. These retorts form the basic technology employed for oil extraction from oil shale in this study. Results are presented for both Commercial and Pre-commercial programs. Also analyzed are Pre-commercialization cost of Demonstration and Pilot programs which will confirm the HRS and MIS concepts and their mechanical designs. These programs will provide experience with the circulating Fluidized Bed Combustor (CFBC), the MIS retort, the HRS retort and establish environmental control parameters. Four cases are considered: commercial size plant, demonstration size plant, demonstration size plant minimum CFBC, and a pilot size plant. Budget cost estimates and schedules are determined. Process flow schemes and basic heat and material balances are determined for the HRS system. Results consist of summaries of major equipment sizes, capital cost estimates, operating cost estimates and economic analyses. 35 figs., 35 tabs.

  7. Canadian oil and gas survey 1998

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Roberge, R.B.

    1998-01-01

    The year 1997 brought record levels of financing for the Canadian oil and gas industry which led to record levels of capital spending and unprecedented merger and acquisition activity. Production records were achieved, but soft commodity prices in the fourth quarter resulted in a significant downturn in the equity markets. El Nino reduced demand for natural gas and heating oil, resulting in increased storage levels for both commodities. Record drilling and capital spending fueled the Canadian oilfield service industry as total market capitalization rose to $10 billion. As for the 1998 outlook, the industry has turned to natural gas as the favoured commodity, as indicated by the conclusion of the Alliance pipeline hearings and the Nova/TCPL merger. This survey presents a review of crude oil and natural gas production, prices, and capital spending for development and exploratory wells, and the financial and operating results for fiscal year 1997 of selected oil and gas companies and income trusts. All listed companies are Canadian public companies, or publicly traded income trusts, traded on one of the country's four major stock exchanges. They are ranked according to gross oil and gas production revenue only (before royalties). Syncrude and oil sands production is also included. The remaining data in the financial statistics tables includes all business segments of each company included. The survey excluded companies that were wholly-owned subsidiaries, divisions or U.S. subsidiaries and private companies. tabs., figs

  8. Environment, health and safety progress report 1997

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1998-01-01

    Imperial Oil is Canada's largest producer of crude oil and a major producer of natural gas. It is also the largest refiner and marketer of petroleum products, sold mainly under the Esso brand. Imperial Oil, in participation with Syncrude Canada, is also a major developer of the oil sands reserves in Cold Lake, Alberta. This review of environmental and health and safety performance in 1997 highlights the Company's comprehensive approach to risk management to reduce risk to safety, health and the environment. It is noted that in 1997, the Company's employee and contractor safety performance continued to be among the best in the industry. Potentially hazardous incidents decreased as a consequence of Imperial Oil's more stringent health and safety management system. Environmental compliance notifications fell by more than half in 1997. During the year there was a slight increase in hazardous wastes, due to the loss of outlets for recycling some materials. The National Pollutants Release Inventory indicates that Imperial has reduced emissions and offsite transfers by 25 per cent since 1993. Volatile organic compounds have been reduced by 60 per cent since 1993. According to the report all Imperial Oil facilities operate well within the guidelines for sulphur dioxide emissions. 1 tab., 10 figs

  9. Reclamation design for a fen wetland on a tailings sand deposit in northern Alberta

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wytrykush, C. [Syncrude Canada Ltd., Edmonton, AB (Canada); McKenna, G.T.; Papini, A.G.; Scordo, E.B. [BGC Engineering Inc., Vancouver, BC (Canada)

    2010-07-01

    This paper discussed the first attempt at designing and constructing a fen wetland and surrounding watershed on a soft tailings deposit in the Athabasca oil sands region. Among the main design components were upland hummocks, vegetated swales, a pond for water storage, a fen wetland, and 2 perched fens. For each component, reclamation prescriptions were developed using methods from Syncrude's regulatory approvals for upland forests, advice from technical experts on wetlands, and results from an analogous wetland research program. Prior to the reclamation, a long-term research program was started to appraise the response of wetland plants to different operation treatments, including placement depth, material type, compaction, and salinity. Operation techniques were developed to glean live in-situ peat material from the top layer of the boreal forest for use in wetland reclamation. Design topography and soil material types were taken into account in developing the prescriptions, which were used to test specific research hypotheses within the instrumented research watershed.

  10. Boomtown echo; In Fort McMurray, there is more to life than oil

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cullen, J.

    2004-08-01

    A photographic essay on life in boomtown Fort McMurray, centre of the oil sand industry in the Athabasca Valley of Alberta, is presented. While much of the attention in the area is focused on how Suncor, Syncrude and Albian Sands are attracting thousands of workers to extract billions of barrels of bitumen from the abundant oil sands, this photographic essay attempts to show life away from the giant shovels, trucks, and conveyors, and refineries and show what makes Fort McMurray one of Canada's fastest growing municipality, on course to double its 50,000 population to 100,000 by 2011. Centerpiece of the article is showing in words and pictures how life is lived and how experts and technicians and their families from Bolivia, Japan, Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Columbia interact with native Canadians and Canadians from all parts of the country. The focus is on how in the hustle-bustle of work, family and a vibrant community life, original intentions of staying only a few years to make money stretch into twenty years, and the boomtown reputation of swinging saloon doors and dusty raised wooden sidewalks give way to substantial community institutions, a full community life, and a desire to stay for good. 14 photos.

  11. Global climate change -- taking action

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2000-01-01

    Commitment of the Canadian Mining Association (MAC), on behalf of its member companies, to play a global leadership role in eco-efficiency and environmental stewardship and participate fully in Canada's efforts to reduce emissions that contribute to climate change, are outlined. The principles underlying the MAC's commitment include: prudent action to reduce GHG emissions; the greatest possible efficiency in using energy; use of best practices and technologies; support for the development of balanced climate change policies; cooperation with all stakeholders in achieving the maximum feasible reduction in GHG emissions; support for research and analysis of the social, economic and environmental implications of GHG reduction strategies; and active support for a balanced and effective public outreach and education program. A brief review of how the mining sector has already made giant strides in cutting energy consumption and in reducing carbon dioxide equivalent emissions per unit of output during the past decade is supplemented by summaries of GHG reduction success stories from member companies such as Cominco, Teck Corporation, Falconbridge and Syncrude Canada Limited

  12. Metals in Devonian kerogenous marine strata at Gibellini and Bisoni properties in southern Fish Creek Range, Eureka County, Nevada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Desborough, George A.; Poole, F.G.; Hose, R.K.; Radtke, A.S.

    1979-01-01

    A kerogen-rich sequence of siliceous mudstone, siltstone, and chert as much as 60 m thick on ridge 7129 in the southern Fish Creek Range, referred to as Gibellini facies of the Woodruff Formation, has been evaluated on the surface and in drill holes principally for its potential resources of vanadium, zinc, selenium, molybdenum, and syncrude oil content. The strata are part of a strongly deformed allochthonous mass of eugeosynclinal Devonian marine rocks that overlie deformed allochthonous Mississippian siliceous rocks and relatively undeformed autochthonous Mississippian Antler flysch at this locality. The vanadium in fresh black rocks obtained from drill holes and fresh exposures in trenches and roadcuts occurs chiefly in organic matter. Concentrations of vanadium oxide (V2O5) in unoxidized samples range from 3,000 to 7,000 ppm. In oxidized and bleached rock that is prevalent at the surface, concentrations of vanadium oxide range from 6,000 to 8,000 ppm, suggesting a tendency toward enrichment due to surficial weathering and ground-water movement. Zinc occurs in sphalerite, and selenium occurs in organic matter; molybdenum appears to occur both in molybdenite and in organic matter. Concentrations of zinc in unoxidized rock range from 4,000 to 18,000 ppm, whereas in oxidized rock they range from 30 to 100 ppm, showing strong depletion due to weathering. Concentrations of selenium in unoxidized rock range from 30 to 200 ppm, whereas in oxidized rock they range from 200 to 400 ppm, indicating some enrichment upon weathering. Concentrations of molybdenum in unoxidized rock range from 70 to 960 ppm, whereas in oxidized rock they range from 30 to 80 ppm, indicating strong depletion upon weathering. Most fresh black rock is low-grade oil shale, and yields as much as 12 gallons/short ton of syncrude oil. Metahewettite is the principal vanadium mineral in the oxidized zone, but it also occurs sparsely as small nodules and fillings of microfractures in unweathered strata

  13. In situ bioremediation of naphthenic acids contaminated tailing pond waters in the athabasca oil sands region--demonstrated field studies and plausible options: a review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quagraine, E K; Peterson, H G; Headley, J V

    2005-01-01

    Currently, there are three industrial plants that recover oil from the lower Athabasca oil sands area, and there are plans in the future for several additional mines. The extraction procedures produce large volumes of slurry wastes contaminated with naphthenic acids (NAs). Because of a "zero discharge" policy the oil sands companies do not release any extraction wastes from their leases. The process-affected waters and fluid tailings contaminated with NAs are contained on-site primarily in large settling ponds. These fluid wastes from the tailing ponds can be acutely and chronically toxic to aquatic organisms, and NAs have been associated with this toxicity. The huge tailings containment area must ultimately be reclaimed, and this is of major concern to the oil sands industry. Some reclamation options have been investigated by both pioneering industries (Syncrude Energy Inc. and Suncor Inc.) with mixed results. The bioremediation techniques have limited success to date in biodegrading NAs to levels below 19 mg/L. Some tailing pond waters have been stored for more than 10 years, and it appears that the remaining high molecular weight NAs are refractory to the natural biodegradation process in the ponds. Some plausible options to further degrade the NAs in the tailings pond water include: bioaugmentation with bacteria selected to degrade the more refractory classes of NAs; the use of attachment materials such as clays to concentrate both the NA and the NA-degrading bacteria in their surfaces and/or pores; synergistic association between algae and bacteria consortia to promote efficient aerobic degradation; and biostimulation with nutrients to promote the growth and activity of the microorganisms.

  14. Synthetic liquid fuels development: assessment of critical factors. Volume III. Coal resource depletion

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dickson, E.M.; Yabroff, I.W.; Kroll, C.A.; White, R.K.; Walton, B.L.; Ivory, M.E.; Fullen, R.E.; Weisbecker, L.W.; Hays, R.L.

    1977-01-01

    While US coal resources are known to be vast, their rate of depletion in a future based predominantly on coal has not been examined analytically heretofore. The Coal Depletion Model inventories the coal resource on a regional basis and calculates the cost of coal extraction by three technologies - strip and underground mining and in-situ combustion. A plausible coal demand scenario extending from 1975 to the year 2050 is used as a basis in applying the model. In the year 2050, plants in operation include 285 syncrude plants, each producing 100,000 B/D; 312 SNG plants, each producing 250 million SCF/D and 722 coal-fired electric power plants, each of 1000 MW capacity. In addition, there is 890 million tons per year of industrial coal consumption. Such a high level of coal use would deplete US coal resources much more rapidly than most people appreciate. Of course, the actual amount of US coal is unknown, and if the coal in the hypothetical reliability category is included, depletion is delayed. Coal in this category, however, has not been mapped; it is only presumed to exist on the basis of geological theory. The coal resource depletion model shows that unilateral imposition of a severance tax by a state tends to shift production to other coal producing regions. Boom and bust cycles are both delayed and reduced in their magnitude. When several states simultaneously impose severance taxes, the effect of each is weakened.Key policy issues that emerge from this analysis concern the need to reduce the uncertainty of the magnitude and geographic distribution of the US coal resource and the need to stimulate interaction among the parties at interest to work out equitable and acceptable coal conversion plant location strategies capable of coping with the challenges of a high-coal future.

  15. A novel approach to mitigating sulphur dioxide emissions and producing a mercury sorbent material using oil-sands fluid coke

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Morris, E.; Jia, C.Q.; Tong, S.

    2008-01-01

    Pyrometallurgical smelting operations are a major source of sulphur dioxide (SO 2 ) which is a precursor to acid rain and increased levels of UV-B penetration in boreal lakes. Mercury is also released in copper smelter off-gas, which can bioaccumulate and cause neurological disorders and death in humans. Fluid coke is produced in massive quantities as a by-product of bitumen upgrading at Syncrude Canada's facility in Fort McMurray, Alberta. Oilsands fluid coke can be used to reduce SO 2 and produce elemental sulphur as a co-product. This process was dubbed SOactive. The reaction physically activates the fluid coke to produce a sulphur-impregnated activated carbon (SIAC) which is known as ECOcarbon. Some studies have indicated that SIAC is well suited for the removal of vapour phase mercury, mainly due to the formation of stable mercuric sulphide species. This paper discussed the findings made to date in relation to the SOactive process and the characterization of ECOcarbons. The paper discussed the use of fluid coke for reducing SO 2 emissions while producing elemental sulphur as well as coke-SO 2 -oxygen (O 2 ) and coke-SO 2 -water (H 2 O) systems. The paper also examined the production of SIAC products for use in capturing vapour phase mercury. The paper presented the materials and methodology, including an illustration of the apparatus used in reduction of SO 2 and activation of fluid coke. It was concluded that more work is still needed to analyse the effect of O 2 and SO 2 reduction and SIAC properties under smelter flue gas conditions. 10 refs., 1 tab., 8 figs

  16. Inter-comparison of MAX-DOAS Retrieved Vertical Profiles of Aerosol Extinction, SO2 and NO2 in the Alberta Oil Sands with LIDAR Data and GEM-MACH Air Quality Model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, Zoe; Friess, Udo; Strawbridge, Kevin; Whiteway, James; Aggarwal, Monika; Makar, Paul; Li, Shao-Meng; O'Brien, Jason; Baray, Sabour; Schnitzler, Elijah; Olfert, Jason S.; Osthoff, Hans D.; Lobo, Akshay; McLaren, Robert

    2016-04-01

    Understanding industrial emissions of trace gas pollutants in the Alberta oil sands is essential to maintaining air quality standards and informing public policy. Multi-Axis Differential Optical Absorption Spectroscopy (MAX-DOAS) measurements of trace gases can improve knowledge of pollutant levels, vertical distribution and chemical transformation. During an intensive air measurement campaign to study emissions, transport, transformation and deposition of oil sands air pollutants from August to September of 2013, a MAX-DOAS instrument was deployed at a site north of Fort McMurray, Alberta to determine the vertical profiles of aerosol extinction, NO2 and SO2 through retrieval from the MAX-DOAS spectral measurements using an optimal estimation method. The large complement of data collected from multiple instruments deployed during this field campaign provides a unique opportunity to validate and characterize the performance of the MAX-DOAS vertical profile retrievals. Aerosol extinction profiles determined from two Light Detection and Ranging (LIDAR) instruments, one collocated and the other on a Twin Otter aircraft that flew over the site during the study, will be compared to the MAX-DOAS aerosol extinction profile retrievals. Vertical profiles of NO2 and SO2 retrieved from the MAX-DOAS measurements will be further compared with the composite vertical profiles measured from the flights of a second aircraft, the NRC-Convair 580, over the field site during the same measurement period. Finally, the MAX-DOAS retrieved tropospheric vertical column densities (VCDs) of SO2 and NO2 will be compared to the predicted VCDs from Environment and Climate Change Canada's Global Environmental Multi-scale - Modelling Air quality and Chemistry (GEM-MACH) air quality model over the grid cell containing the field site. Emission estimates of SO2 from the major oil mining facility Syncrude Mildred Lake using the MAX-DOAS VCD results, validated through the detailed characterization above

  17. Deadline scramble : oilsands mining operators and outsiders investigate more rapid tailings pond cleanup

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Smith, M.

    2010-05-15

    Oil sand tailings ponds composed of a slurry of water, clay, sand, silt and residual bitumen have become one of the biggest environmental and public relations challenges facing the oil sand industry. The Alberta Energy Resources Conservation Board's Directive 74 requires that oilsands mining companies convert at least 20 per cent of the fine particles in their tailings ponds to solid waste by June 2011, rising to 50 per cent by 2013 and annually thereafter. Tailings ponds must be ready for surface reclamation within 5 years of the ponds becoming inactive. Directive 74 also stipulates that within 1 year of the creation of a dedicated disposal area, it must attain a minimum undrained shear strength of 5 kilopascals, rising to a minimum shear strength in 5 years of 10 kPa, trafficable and ready for reclamation. To date, only Suncor has committed to meeting the directive's deadlines. Syncrude Canada Ltd. has been testing centrifuge technology, and smaller companies, such as Solid Environmental Services Ltd, Foret Plasma Labs, LLC and Micro-TES, Inc. are also promoting their own solutions. The greatest challenge with the tailings ponds is to reach that 5 kPa rating. This article described some technologies that may attain the criteria, including the bentonite-based PitDry solidification process that is used to treat a variety of drilling, mining and industrial wastes; the Plasma Whirl, a plasma hydrocyclone that can be used for water treatment and heavy oil upgrading; and super bugs in which microbes break down hydrocarbons and other organic wastes into non-hazardous components such as fatty acids, carbon dioxide and water. 4 refs., 3 figs.

  18. Assessment of environmental problems associated with increased enhanced oil recovery in the United States: 1980-2000

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kaplan, E.; Garrell, M.; Royce, B.; Riedel, E.F.; Sathaye, J.

    1983-01-01

    Water requirements and uncontrolled air emissions from well vents and steam generators were estimated for each technology based upon available literature. Estimates of best air emission control technologies were made using data for EOR steam generators actually in use, as well as control technologies presently available but used by other industries. Amounts of solid wastes were calculated for each air emission control technology. Estimates were also made of the heavy metal content of these solid wastes. The study also included environmental residuals which may be expected should coal be used instead of lean crude to produce steam for thermal EOR. It was concluded that from an environmental prospective tertiary oil is preferable in many respects to shale oil, coal and synfuels. Alternative sources of oil such as syncrude, new exploration, and primary production could cause far more environmental damage than incremental EOR. Future EOR in specific regions may be constrained because of environmental issues: air emissions, solid waste disposal, water availability, and aquifer contaminators. Competition for water and the scarcity of surface water or groundwater which are low in total diminutive solids will impede some EOR projects. Risks of groundwater contamination should be minimized particularly because of requirements of the Environmental Protection Agency's new underground injection control program. A quantitative environmental assessment will require a complete and consistent data base for all fields for which EOR is planned out in which tertiary production is taking place. This is particularly true for EOR which will occur in Alaska or in offshore areas, where environments are fragile and where operating conditions are severe. 147 references, 29 figures, 46 tables.

  19. Esso Imperial Oil annual report to shareholders 2003 : sustaining growth in shareholder value

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2004-01-01

    Financial information from Esso Imperial Oil, one of Canada's largest producers of crude oil and natural gas, was presented and a review of their 2003 operations was made available for the benefit of shareholders. In 2003, the total return on Imperial shares including capital appreciation and dividends was more than 30 per cent (TSX), and about 58 per cent (AMEX). In the past decade, the total return on Imperial's shares has averaged more than 18 per cent per year. Dividend payments have been paid every year for more than a century, and regular dividend payments have increased in each of the past 9 years. Since 1995, nearly 220 million shares have been purchased, reducing the number of outstanding shares by 38 per cent, representing a total distribution to shareholders of about $6 billion over this period. Major projects in natural resources have included expansion at Syncrude, increased production at Cold Lake, progress in the project to develop natural gas resources in the Mackenzie Delta, and plans to develop Kearl oil sands properties near Fort McMurray, Alberta. There were also promising exploration opportunities off Canada's east coast. Employee safety performance in 2003 was the best on record. This report summarized the company's energy resource activities and presented an operations review as well as consolidated financial statements, and common share information. This included the accounts of Imperial Oil Inc. and its subsidiaries and the company's proportionate share of the assets, liabilities, revenues, expenses and cash flows of joint ventures. Revenue and expenditure statements were summarized by source. tabs., figs

  20. Electrical deregulation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Simpson, R.

    2001-01-01

    Deregulation in the electricity sector took effect on January 1, 2001 in Alberta. Business consumers discovered that their electricity rates had almost doubled in a one-month period. The government argued that it was the case of short term pain for long term gain. The intent of the deregulation is the lowering of prices through competition. This principle applies when the supply meets the demand, but when the demand exceeds the supply, prices increase. When initial plans were made for the deregulation of the sector, utilities did not invest huge amounts of capital to build new generation plants, as it was not known how they would fare in the deregulated environment. This situation was compounded by the fact that there was an economic boom around the same time in Alberta, adding to the demands made on the existing generation infrastructure (approximately 4 per cent per year over the past decade). At the moment, some resource developers such as Syncrude, Amoco, and Daishowa produce their own electricity and export their excess capacity to the provincial grid for general use. The rules of the deregulated market have been clarified and a number of utilities are planning new generation plants and facilities. TransAlta, EPCOR, and Enmax Corp. have announced plans to expand or build new coal-fired plants. Alberta has an estimated 35 billion tonnes of recoverable coal, and 25 million tonnes of coal were used in 1999 to produce 75 per cent of the electricity required in Alberta. Over the next ten years, 4,000 megawatts of new capacity is planned, representing a 50 per cent increase over current levels. AES Corporation, a Virginia power giant, has also announced plans to build a generator in Alberta

  1. Degradation and aquatic toxicity of naphthenic acids in oil sands process-affected waters using simulated wetlands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toor, Navdeep S; Franz, Eric D; Fedorak, Phillip M; MacKinnon, Michael D; Liber, Karsten

    2013-01-01

    Oil sands process-affected waters (OSPWs) produced during the extraction of bitumen at the Athabasca Oil Sands (AOS) located in northeastern Alberta, Canada, are toxic to many aquatic organisms. Much of this toxicity is related to a group of dissolved organic acids known as naphthenic acids (NAs). Naphthenic acids are a natural component of bitumen and are released into process water during the separation of bitumen from the oil sand ore by a caustic hot water extraction process. Using laboratory microcosms as an analogue of a proposed constructed wetland reclamation strategy for OSPW, we evaluated the effectiveness of these microcosms in degrading NAs and reducing the aquatic toxicity of OSPW over a 52-week test period. Experimental manipulations included two sources of OSPW (one from Syncrude Canada Ltd. and one from Suncor Energy Inc.), two different hydraulic retention times (HRTs; 40 and 400 d), and increased nutrient availability (added nitrate and phosphate). Microcosms with a longer HRT (for both OSPWs) showed higher reductions in total NAs concentrations (64-74% NAs reduction, p100% v/v) independent of HRT. However, EC20s from separate Microtox® bioassays were relatively unchanged when comparing the input and microcosm waters at both HRTs over the 52-week study period (p>0.05), indicating that some sub-lethal toxicity persisted under these experimental conditions. The present study demonstrated that given sufficiently long HRTs, simulated wetland microcosms containing OSPW significantly reduced total NAs concentrations and acute toxicity, but left behind a persistent component of the NAs mixture that appeared to be associated with residual chronic toxicity. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Thriving in the shadow of giants : Golosky Group demonstrates elbow work pays off

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ednie, H.

    2005-10-01

    This feature article described how the Golosky Group, founded by Metis born Doug Golosky, landed its first contract with major oil sands operators around Fort McMurray. His business strategy for gaining the interests in all the major operations in the region was discussed. The Golosky Group is an amalgamation of 9 companies, each operating as a separate economic unit, but working together. Most of the 9 companies are located in Fort McMurray, but 2 are based in Edmonton and 1 in Howick, Quebec. Clearwater, the main company, is a welding and fabrication shop with contracts with TransAlta, Albian Sands, and Syncrude for mine maintenance and with Suncor for process piping. Golosky Trucking is another company within the Group which provides transportation services to the industries of the Wood Buffalo region. Matrix, another company within the Group, collaborated with the University of Waterloo to design and manufacture a machine for hard surfacing of tailings pipes. The company provides a Chromium Carbide overlay into a 40 to 80 foot pipe without welding joints or splicing. It also manufactures the sizer teeth for the Canadian diamond mines. The Golosky Group also upgraded Brospec's equipment and integrated it into their business. The administration for the various companies is centralized with weekly reports submitted from each company. The company currently employs 1,200 people, but is faced with a lack of trained people in Fort McMurray. Golosky works with local apprenticeship programs and with high schools to attract and train people. The workforce shortage has actually prompted Golsosky to invest in new technologies such as an automated hard surfacing machine, lathe, and CNC milling machines. Golosky emphasizes a good relationship with employees and is dedicated to furthering Aboriginal business opportunities in Canada. In 1994, he helped start the Northern Alberta Aboriginal Business Association which today has about 150 Aboriginal businesses as members. 9

  3. The influence of managed versus natural hydrologic regimes on the hydrochemical patterns in a constructed wetland in the Athabasca oil sands region, Canada.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biagi, K.; Oswald, C.; Nicholls, E.; Carey, S.

    2017-12-01

    Bitumen extraction via surface mining in the Athabasca Oil Sands Region (AOSR) results in permanent alteration of the landscape once rich in boreal forest and wetlands. As part of their legal requirements, oil companies must reclaim disturbed landscapes into functioning ecosystems, and to date only two pilot wetland-peatland systems have been constructed. Peatland reclamation is challenging as they must be completely reconstructed with few guidelines or previous work in this region. Furthermore, the variable sub-humid climate and salinity of waste-materials are obstacles to the success of peatland creation. In 2012, Syncrude Canada Ltd. constructed a 52 ha upland-wetland system, the Sandhill Fen Watershed (SFW), which was designed with a pump and underdrain system to provide freshwater and enhance drainage to limit salinization from underlying waste materials that have elevated electrical conductivity (EC) and Na+. The objective of this research is to understand the hydrochemical response of a constructed wetland to variations in hydrological management with respect to sources, flow pathways and major chemical transformations of water in the three years following commissioning. EC, major ions and stable isotopes were collected using a combination of high frequency and discrete water sampling from 2013-2015. Results indicate that high activity of both inflow and outflow pumps in 2013 kept the EC relatively low, with most wetland sites 1000 µS/cm in 2014 and >2000 µS/cm in 2015. Most wetland sites remained Ca+2 dominant where Ca+2 and Na+ averaged 200 and 130 mg/L, respectively. However, the most notable change in 2014 and 2015 was the emergence of several Na+ "hotspots" in the margins where Na+ concentrations averaged 450 mg/L while Ca+2 averaged 250 mg/L. Stable isotope data confirm that the "hotspots" match the underlying waste water and provide evidence of its upward transport and seepage under a natural hydrologic regime. Minimizing salinization is critical

  4. Reproductive and health assessment of fathead minnows (Pimephales promelas) inhabiting a pond containing oil sands process-affected water

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kavanagh, Richard J., E-mail: rkavanag@uoguelph.ca [Department of Integrative Biology, University of Guelph, Guelph, ON, Canada N1G 2W1 (Canada); Frank, Richard A.; Solomon, Keith R. [Centre for Toxicology, University of Guelph, Guelph, ON, Canada N1G 2W1 (Canada); Van Der Kraak, Glen [Department of Integrative Biology, University of Guelph, Guelph, ON, Canada N1G 2W1 (Canada)

    2013-04-15

    Highlights: ► Fish were collected from a pond containing oil sands process-affected water (OSPW). ► They were compared to fish from two reference sites within the oil sands region. ► Differences in GSIs and tubercle numbers were observed in fish from the OSPW pond. ► Opercula, gills, and 11-KT concentrations also differed in fish from the OSPW pond. ► Black spot and tapeworms were not observed in any of the fish from the OSPW pond. -- Abstract: Previous laboratory based studies have shown that oil sands process-affected waters (OSPWs) containing high concentrations of naphthenic acids (>25 mg/l) have adverse effects on the reproductive physiology of fish. The purpose of this study was to assess the reproductive development and health of a wild population of fathead minnows (Pimephales promelas) inhabiting an OSPW pond that has moderate concentrations of naphthenic acids (∼10 mg/l). Fathead minnows were collected at various times during the period of 2006 through 2008 from Demonstration Pond (OSPW) located at Syncrude Canada Ltd., and two reference sites, Beaver Creek reservoir and Poplar Creek reservoir, which are all north of Fort McMurray, AB, Canada. Condition factor, gill histopathology, gonadosomatic indices, liver somatic indices, male secondary sexual characteristics, and plasma sex steroids were examined. Depending on the time of year that fathead minnows were collected, there were differences in the condition factor, gonadosomatic indices, liver somatic indices, and secondary sexual characteristics of fathead minnows (in males) from Demonstration Pond when compared to the fathead minnows from the reference sites. In comparison to reference fish, lower concentrations of 11-ketotestosterone were measured in the plasma of male fathead minnows collected from Demonstration Pond in June 2006 and July 2007. Black spot disease and Ligula intestinalis were prevalent in fathead minnows from the reference sites but were not observed in fathead minnows

  5. The stable isotopes of site wide waters at an oil sands mine in northern Alberta, Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baer, Thomas; Barbour, S. Lee; Gibson, John J.

    2016-10-01

    Oil sands mines have large disturbance footprints and contain a range of new landforms constructed from mine waste such as shale overburden and the byproducts of bitumen extraction such as sand and fluid fine tailings. Each of these landforms are a potential source of water and chemical release to adjacent surface and groundwater, and consequently, the development of methods to track water migration through these landforms is of importance. The stable isotopes of water (i.e. 2H and 18O) have been widely used in hydrology and hydrogeology to characterize surface water/groundwater interactions but have not been extensively applied in mining applications, or specifically to oil sands mining in northern Alberta. A prerequisite for applying these techniques is the establishment of a Local Meteoric Water Line (LMWL) to characterize precipitation at the mine sites as well as the development of a 'catalogue' of the stable water isotope signatures of various mine site waters. This study was undertaken at the Mildred Lake Mine Site, owned and operated by Syncrude Canada Ltd. The LMWL developed from 2 years (2009/2012) of sample collection is shown to be consistent with other LMWLs in western Canada. The results of the study highlight the unique stable water isotope signatures associated with hydraulically placed tailings (sand or fluid fine tailings) and overburden shale dumps relative to natural surface water and groundwater. The signature associated with the snow melt water on reclaimed landscapes was found to be similar to ground water recharge in the region. The isotopic composition of the shale overburden deposits are also distinct and consistent with observations made by other researchers in western Canada on undisturbed shales. The process water associated with the fine and coarse tailings streams has highly enriched 2H and 18O signatures. These signatures are developed through the non-equilibrium fractionation of imported fresh river water during evaporation from

  6. Examination of mercury and organic carbon dynamics from a constructed fen in the Athabasca oil sands region, Alberta, Canada using in situ and laboratory fluorescence measurements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oswald, C.; Carey, S. K.

    2013-12-01

    In the Athabasca oil sands region, mined landscapes must be reclaimed to a functioning natural ecosystem as part of the mine closure process. To test wetland construction techniques on oil sands tailings, 55 ha of mined landscape on the Syncrude Canada Ltd. property is being reclaimed to a watershed containing a graminoid fen. The 18 ha constructed fen consists of an approximately 50 cm thick peat-mineral soil layer separated from underlying tailings sand by a thin layer of clay till. The water table in the fen is maintained by pumping water into the fen from a nearby lake and controlling outflow with under-drains. The objective of this study was to assess total mercury (THg) and methyl mercury (MeHg) concentration dynamics in water exported from the fen in relation to organic carbon quantity and composition. Water quality data from summer 2012 when the fen pumps were first turned on show that dissolved organic carbon (DOC) concentrations are on average twice as high in water flowing through the underlying tailings sand aquifer (median: 42.0 mg/L) compared to DOC concentrations in water flowing through the fen peat package (median: 20.3 mg/L). Given these DOC concentrations, filtered THg concentrations are very low (median values are 0.81 ng/L and 0.17 ng/L for water flowing through the fen peat and sand tailings, respectively) compared to concentrations reported for other boreal wetlands. Although a relationship was identified between filtered THg and DOC (r2=0.60), its slope (0.06 ng Hg/mg C) is an order-of-magnitude smaller than the typical range of slopes found at other wetland sites potentially suggesting a small pool of mercury in the peat and/or limited partitioning of mercury into solution. Filtered MeHg concentrations in all water samples are near the limit of detection and suggest that biogeochemical conditions conducive to methylation did not exist in the fen peat or tailings sand at the time of sampling. In addition to these baseline THg and Me

  7. The Siren Song of Economic Diversification: Alberta’s Legacy of Loss

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F.L. Ted Morton

    2015-03-01

    tries to restore some stability to Alberta’s public finances, it merits revisiting the Lougheed-Getty experience for lessons learned. Our read of their record cautions against going down the same road again. While we identify several successes (e.g., Syncrude, Alberta Energy Company, and the ethane-based petrochemical industry, these were mostly in the hydrocarbon energy sector, and so contributed little to diversifying Alberta’s economy. Our analysis identifies the largest dollar losses (the “Dirty Dozen”, several of which suggest that failure to control costs is endemic to government-led projects. Last but not least, the sheer number and diversity of government-funded projects reflects an unhealthy culture of corporate cronyism. With billions of dollars sitting in the newly created Alberta Heritage Savings Trust Fund earmarked for “diversification” and “capital projects,” the temptation to spend became irresistible. The Heritage Fund, rather than serving its original purpose of a long-term “rainy-day account,” became a giant slush fund for ministers’ pet projects. The result is that, in real dollars, the Heritage Savings Trust Fund has a lower net worth in 2015 than it did in 1987. By the time Klein won the leadership of the PCs in 1993, his predecessors had racked up over $23 billion in net debt. Klein is widely celebrated by some (and criticized by others for the harsh budget cuts he made to eliminate the structural deficit he inherited. Less well known is that the Klein team also terminated almost all the Lougheed-Getty diversification and stimulus programs. In their stead, the Klein governments—under the leadership of treasurers Jim Dinning and Stockwell Day—pursued a diversification policy based on macroeconomics: making Alberta the most taxcompetitive jurisdiction in Canada. This “build-it-and-they-will-come” approach was intended to attract both financial and human capital. This approach has enjoyed modest success thus far, as