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Topic Summary
Posted by: thehighwayman Posted on: Apr 9th, 2016, 9:09am
The last time I posted an article about the proposed Raven Coal mine, it started quite a discussion.
Today's Times-Colonist has this:
 
http://www.timescolonist.com/news/local/for-raven-coal-mine-opponents-relief-as-project-is-terminated-1.2226991
 
Will MacKenzie
Flamborough, ON
Posted by: ENR3005 Posted on: Apr 25th, 2016, 10:45pm
Even if it were developed it would have had a very limited life span, if I remember correctly 20 years or less. Hopefully someone will get back to the business of developing traffic from existing industries instead of dream traffic. The E & N Railway Corridor: Development Strategies for the Island Corridor Foundation document had some existing good leads and even listed potential customers which I have cut and paste below which isn't as pretty as the document itself. This document was done around 2010 but is still a good read given the gloomy outlook these days. It gives a nice summary of how the railroad would get up to 7,000 carloads again, some revenue to at least to start fixing things.     
 
 
4.4 Freight Business Development
 
The Foundation Paper provides an estimate of 35,000 to 40,000 carloads per year as the level of traffic which would be required to bear the full capital cost of upgrading the rail infrastructure and maintain operations on a sustainable basis. If the capital costs of upgrading the infrastructure were excluded, a traffic level of approximately 8,000 carloads per year would be required to cover basic operating and maintenance costs and sustain the rail operation.
This section explores potential opportunities for the ICF to increase traffic in resource extraction and in smaller local industries located along the corridor that are currently using other modes.  
 
4.4.1 IMPACT OF ANNACIS ISLAND AND WELLCOX YARD IMPROVEMENTS
 
The most significant potential source of increased rail traffic is the Raven coal mine which could contribute up to 10,000 carloads per year. The project proponent, Compliance Energy Company, is currently assessing overall feasibility and transportation options for the mine. However, achieving an adequate level of traffic will require the railway to expand the existing traffic base to other shippers on the Island who are currently using other modes. SVI’s ability to compete for this traffic has been hampered by the low service frequency which was feasible under the limitations of CP’s weekly service to the Tilbury barge terminal. The low frequency increased shippers’ costs due to increased car cycle times and inventory costs. The recent opening of the new Annacis barge terminal will enable SVI to offer increased frequency. Additional improvements completed in April 2010 have enabled the Annacis terminal to handle trucks as well as rail cars. As a result, Seaspan Coastal Intermodal will be able to load a mix of rail cars and trucks; the initial target is to provide service 5 days per week. This expanded schedule of service will make rail a more viable option for shippers to and from Vancouver Island. The expansion of transloading activity at Wellcox Yard in Nanaimo could enable the railway to access customers not served by direct rail. This facility is well suited for transloading, with a total area of 19 acres (including rail yard) and recent transloading activity has included both dry and liquid bulk products (fly ash and biodiesel respectively).  
 
Page 40  
 
IBI GROUP E&N RAILWAY CORRIDOR: DEVELOPMENT STRATEGIES FOR THE ISLAND CORRIDOR FOUNDATION
 
Page 37
 
4.4.2 FREIGHT MARKET OPPORTUNITIES – INDUSTRIAL SHIPPERS
 
The prime market for rail service is industrial shippers. A comprehensive list of industrial enterprises was developed for the purposes of estimating industrial air emissions in 2005.5 The inventory for Vancouver Island lists approximately 180 industrial enterprises holding air emissions permits. Forestry mills account for largest share; market prospects for these were detailed in Phase 1. Among the remaining industrial plants, the largest categories are ready mix concrete plants and asphalt plants. A list of these plants is shown below in Table 4.5.
 
Table 4.5 – Industrial Plants on Vancouver Island
 
READY MIX CONCRETE PLANTS
 
COMPANY
 
LOCATION
 
Arrowsmith Concrete Ltd.  
 
Qualicum Beach
 
Bedrock Redi-Mix Ltd.  
 
Cassidy
 
Butler Brothers Supplies Ltd.  
 
Saanichton
 
Courtenay Concrete Products Ltd.
 
Courtenay  
 
Cumberland Ready-Mix Ltd
 
Cumberland
 
Dolan's Concrete Ltd.  
 
Port Alberni
 
Evans Redi-Mix Ltd
 
Duncan
 
Hyland Precast Inc.  
 
Courtenay
 
Independent Concrete Ltd  
 
Victoria
 
Lafarge Concrete  
 
Nanaimo
 
Mayco Mix Ltd.  
 
Nanaimo  
 
Nanaimo Concrete Ltd
 
Nanaimo
 
Osborne Contracting Limited  
 
Duncan
 
Surespan Ready Mix Ltd Duncan 35  
 
Duncan  
 
Upland Ready Mix Ltd.  
 
Campbell River  
 
ASPHALT PLANTS
 
COMPANY
 
LOCATION
 
Haylock Bros. Paving Ltd.  
 
Qualicum Beach
 
Duncan Paving Ltd.  
 
Victoria  
 
Island Asphalt Ltd.  
 
Victoria
 
Island Asphalt Ltd.  
 
Victoria
 
Island Asphalt Ltd. Victoria
 
Victoria
 
O.K. Paving Company  
 
Port Hardy
 
Tayco Paving Co. Ltd.  
 
Victoria
 
Tayco Paving Co. Ltd.  
 
Victoria
 
Arc Asphalt Recycling Corp.  
 
Victoria
 
Capital City Paving Ltd.  
 
Saanichton
 
Hub City Paving Ltd. (Lafarge)
 
Nanaimo  
 
R And E Paving Ltd.  
 
Port Alberni
 
The Corporation Of The City Of Victoria  
 
Victoria
 
Webb, Kyle  
 
Victoria
 
5 2005 British Columbia Emissions Inventory of Criteria Air Contaminants British Columbia Ministry of Healthy Living and Sport
 
Population and Public Health Victoria, B.C. July 2009.  
 
 
 
Page 41  
 
IBI GROUP E&N RAILWAY CORRIDOR: DEVELOPMENT STRATEGIES FOR THE ISLAND CORRIDOR FOUNDATION
 
Page 38
 
The raw materials for these operations consist of bulk materials including cement, aggregate, and liquid asphalt (asphalt cement). Many of these facilities are located on or adjacent to existing gravel pits. Cement is transported in bulk by barge from plants in the Lower Mainland to Island terminals by the two major producers, LaFarge and LeHigh, and trucked to ready mix plants. Aggregate is either sourced locally or shipped by barge to coastal terminals, where it is trucked to destination. Liquid asphalt is shipped by truck from the Lower Mainland. The Foundation (Phase 1) Report noted the market potential for sourcing of aggregates for the Victoria market from alternative reserves up-Island. However, it was noted that this market would be extremely competitive due to the availability of shipments of aggregate by barge from Lehigh’s facility in Sechelt. Due to the high cost of local trucking relative to product value it may be possible for the railway to be competitive in aggregate shipments to some of the ready mix and asphalt plants if suitable reserves adjacent to the rail line can be located, and if suitable transshipment facilities can also be developed on the rail line. Development of this intra-Island traffic is also promising because it would not require investment in additional barge capacity. Liquid asphalt (used in paving) is produced as a by-product of refinery operations. Liquid asphalt in BC comes primarily from three refineries – Husky Energy in Lloydminster, Sask.; Imperial Oil in Strathcona County (Edmonton), Alberta; and Chevron in Burnaby. The current CN rail tariff for liquid asphalt is $5,496 per carload from Edmonton AB to Burnaby, BC. On top of the regular tariff is the fuel surcharge at $0.1078 per mile or approximately $78, totalling to $5,574 per carload (March, 2010). The railways also do not provide tanker cars for the transport of liquid asphalt, so the shipper would either have lease these cars or provide private cars. Each carload can carry approximately 91 tonnes, which is equivalent to $61.25 per tonne for the transportation from Edmonton. Theoretically, direct rail shipment to Vancouver Island could be competitive at a rate at which the rack price in Edmonton plus rail rate and car lease plus transloading in Nanaimo and short haul trucking to destination is less then the rack price6 plus trucking cost from Burnaby to final destination. However, asphalt requires special handling, including specialized rail cars and storage tanks because it must be maintained at a high temperature. Asphalt is typically railed in at a temperature of between 300 and 325ºF, and is stored at delivery temperature. The rail cars have coils at the bottom of the railcar to heat the asphalt prior to pumping the asphalt from the cars into the tank. Asphalt storage tanks are expensive and permitting of storage facilities can be a challenge due to environmental and fire safety issues. After storage, the asphalt is typically transferred from the tank to a tank truck and shipped to the customer at a temperature of 325ºF. Tank trucks are not heated. Other non-forestry related industrial plants are shown in Table 4.6. In general, these provide limited additional opportunities for rail traffic. 6 Rack price is price loaded onto a truck (truckload quantity) at the refinery or terminal (the “truck rack”). These prices are published by refineries as a benchmark although actual prices paid by customers may reflect individual discounts.  
 
Page 42  
 
IBI GROUP E&N RAILWAY CORRIDOR: DEVELOPMENT STRATEGIES FOR THE ISLAND CORRIDOR FOUNDATION
 
Page 39
 
Table 4.6 – Non-Forestry Industries along the E & N Railway Corridor
 
Company
 
Location
 
Industry Sector
 
Current
 
Service
 
Quinsam Coal Corporation
 
Campbell River  
 
Mining
 
Truck To
 
Barge
 
Breakwater Resources Limited
 
Campbell River  
 
Mining
 
Truck To
 
Barge
 
Top Shelf Feeds Inc
 
Duncan
 
Food Industries
 
Rail
 
West Coast Reduction Ltd.
 
Nanaimo  
 
Food Industries
 
Alberni Foundry Ltd.  
 
Port Alberni
 
Primary Metal Industries
 
Duncan Electric Motor Ltd.
 
Campbell River  
 
Fabricated Metal Products
 
G.L. Harper Scrap Metal and
 
Demo. Ltd.  
 
Duncan
 
Fabricated Metal Products
 
Canexus Chemicals
 
Nanaimo
 
Chemicals
 
Rail Barge
 
National Silicates Limited  
 
Parksville
 
Chemicals
 
Rail
 
Seastar Chemicals Inc.  
 
Saanich  
 
Chemicals
 
4.4.3 FORESTRY AND CONDITIONS TO ATTRACT BUSINESS
 
In the Foundation Report, it was estimated that some 12,000 truckloads of forest products pass through to Nanaimo for export on the ferries or barges, equivalent to approximately 5,000 rail carloads per year. Based on the location of major forest products industrial clusters and confirmed by observed trucking flows, the major origins for this traffic are Port Alberni and the Cowichan-Chemainus-Ladysmith area between Duncan and Nanaimo. Freight demand from the forest sector might be partially recaptured if rail service were faster and more frequent. This would start with the improved rail barge connection to the Lower Mainland and then the railway owner and operator would have to build the business by working with forestry shippers to get a commitment. The best potential is in the central portion of the corridor, and possibly the Port Alberni line. Table 4-7 lists sawmills and pulp/paper mills near the railway corridor that could be approached as potential shippers. Table 4.7 – Forestry Industries along the E & N Railway Corridor  
 
Company
 
Location
 
Industry Sector
 
Alberni Pacific
 
Port Alberni
 
Sawmill
 
Somass
 
Port Alberni
 
Sawmill
 
Chemainus
 
Chemainus
 
Sawmill
 
Cowichan Bay
 
Cowichan Bay
 
Sawmill
 
Ladysmith
 
Ladysmith
 
Sawmill
 
Catalyst Paper
 
Crofton
 
Pulp/Paper
 
Catalyst Paper
 
Port Alberni
 
Pulp/Paper
 
Nanaimo Forest Products
 
Cedar
 
Pulp/Paper
 
Campbell River Fibre Ltd.
 
Campbell River
 
Wood Chip Mill
 
DCT Chambers Trucking Ltd.
 
Chemainus
 
Wood Chip Mill
 
Western Forest Products Ltd.
 
Nanaimo
 
Wood Chip Mill  
 
 
 
Page 43  
 
IBI GROUP E&N RAILWAY CORRIDOR: DEVELOPMENT STRATEGIES FOR THE ISLAND CORRIDOR FOUNDATION
 
Page 40
 
4.4.4 ADDITIONAL SECTORS (SVI MARKET DEVELOPMENT PLAN)  
 
SVI is in the process of developing a plan to incrementally increase freight traffic volumes. Preliminary SVI estimates of the potential railcar freight volume to and from Vancouver Island via their Annacis Rail Marine Terminal (ARMT) are in excess of 7,000 carloads and could increase to over 20,000 carloads if the Raven Coal project comes to fruition with coal being exported via rail through Port Alberni. SVI’s current 2010 budget is for 876 carloads to be delivered. They estimate that active opportunities represent an additional 900 carloads (a short term potential of nearly 1800 car loads including existing traffic) and future potential opportunities represent 5200 carloads (bringing the long term speculative total to 7,000). There are three main components to SVI’s strategy to incrementally grow freight volume. Those components are to provide a lower price than a trucking option, improve service levels to and from the Island which reduces transit times on railcars, and simplify the pricing structure by bundling the cost of rail transportation and transloading. Because most industries do not have active rail sidings, or the potential to build rail sidings, many opportunities involve a transloading activity from railcar to truck at or near Nanaimo. SVI has started a new transload business and now have the capabilities to transload numerous products. The major industries on Vancouver Island that utilize rail are pulp and paper, agricultural, chemical/energy, solid woods and aggregates. Opportunities currently being pursued are divided fairly evenly across all these industries. An active opportunity is defined as an opportunity that is currently being negotiated in terms of price, being analyzed for cost savings on the part of the shipper, or being investigated in terms of feasibility. Potential opportunities are those that have been discussed with the shipper and there is interest to continue discussions. SVI believes that development of local intra-Island traffic will be critical to success. Local traffic identified so far includes aggregates moving to the Victoria construction market from Northern sources and Compliance Energy’s coal that would be moved by rail and exported through the Port of Port Alberni. Both of these business segments will require upgrading of the line before heavy volumes can be handled. In terms of the pulp and paper industry currently most of the inbound chemicals or raw materials are delivered by railcar to the mill. All mills except Catalyst Paper at Port Alberni have railcar barge access and chemicals are received via this mode. SVI is exploring inbound clay and resin opportunities for Catalyst paper which would involve transloading at the SVI Transload in Nanaimo. Outbound products move via covered barge or truck. Again the only opportunity outbound is product ex Port Alberni but rail infrastructure would need to be rebuilt to re-establish rail movement. Multiple opportunities exist in the solid wood sector. Veneer and utility poles can be shipped directly from origin. Lumber needs to be transloaded as there are no industry sidings to the various mills, with the exception of some potential out of Port Alberni. Today lumber is trucked directly off the Island or is shipped via bulk barge. A lumber transload option on the Island is cost prohibitive at this point but it is still being investigated for niche opportunities like untreated ties.  Vancouver Island has a number of dairy and poultry farms that produce milk, eggs and broiler chicken. These farms receive dairy, layer and broiler feeds. Top Shelf Feeds in Duncan is the primary supplier of these feeds. Clearbrook Grain & Milling also competes in this market and has several large layer accounts that they serve from their Abbotsford feed mill. The estimated total volume of this finished feed is 23,500MT per year, equivalent to 275 carloads per year. Potential steel volumes are less than 250 cars a year but initial analysis indicates little or no real opportunity on moving steel. Volumes move in LTL quantities and receivers are not on rail. Transloading opportunities exist for fly ash and aggregates as the economies of scale in using a railcar are greater than a truck trailer arrangement. Service and ease of doing business are seen as major factors in deciding if rail is a viable option.
Posted by: George_Harris Posted on: Apr 26th, 2016, 2:51am
I tend think that most of the list of potential traffic just given qualifies as dreaming.  As to Raven Coal:  That had a real potential.  Like many projects that would provide employment it died from the over the top screaming of various "environmental" agitators.
 
Quoting from the Times Colonist Quote:
The move ended a process that began in mid-2009 amid fears that the mine would contaminate watersheds, threaten wildlife and harm shellfish growers in Baynes Sound.
 
Roberta Stevenson, executive director of the B.C. Shellfish Growers Association, said Thursday that she was “delighted” by the decision to terminate the assessment, but frustrated that it took so long to arrive.

Given the current environmental regulations, to get in such an uproar about the potential negative results that simply would not be allowed to happen even with no uproar from these environmentalists that seem to have no concern about the ability of people that are not independently wealthy to live.  It sounds like the main objective of these nay sayers was to stop the mine by any means possible which resulted in the conclusion of the mine planners that the potential profits were being so constrained and would be so far in the future as to not be worth the effort.  Instead what will happen is that the coal needed to meet the demand will end up being mined in countries that do not have environmental regulations so that the mining operation will really harm the environment.
Posted by: chrisale Posted on: Apr 29th, 2016, 5:17pm
on Apr 26th, 2016, 2:51am, George_Harris wrote:       (Click here for original message)
I tend think that most of the list of potential traffic just given qualifies as dreaming.  As to Raven Coal:  That had a real potential.  Like many projects that would provide employment it died from the over the top screaming of various "environmental" agitators.
 
Quoting from the Times Colonist  
Given the current environmental regulations, to get in such an uproar about the potential negative results that simply would not be allowed to happen even with no uproar from these environmentalists that seem to have no concern about the ability of people that are not independently wealthy to live.  It sounds like the main objective of these nay sayers was to stop the mine by any means possible which resulted in the conclusion of the mine planners that the potential profits were being so constrained and would be so far in the future as to not be worth the effort.  Instead what will happen is that the coal needed to meet the demand will end up being mined in countries that do not have environmental regulations so that the mining operation will really harm the environment.

 
What coal demand?  Prices are in the tank for a reason. Coal is dead.  Thermal coal in particular, which was the backup plan for Raven if mid-range coal prices were bad, is a sunset industry.
 
The company was a basket case and totally arrogant.  They needed First Nations approval and instead seemed to do their best to annoy them.
 
It was also abundantly clear by the end that they never had any intention of going by rail.  
 
In all, a very bad project that I am glad we don't have to waste any more energy on.
Posted by: Dennis Dalla-Vicenza Posted on: Apr 29th, 2016, 8:21pm
on Apr 29th, 2016, 5:17pm, chrisale wrote:       (Click here for original message)

 
What coal demand?  Prices are in the tank for a reason. Coal is dead.  Thermal coal in particular, which was the backup plan for Raven if mid-range coal prices were bad, is a sunset industry.
 
The company was a basket case and totally arrogant.  They needed First Nations approval and instead seemed to do their best to annoy them.
 
It was also abundantly clear by the end that they never had any intention of going by rail.  
 
In all, a very bad project that I am glad we don't have to waste any more energy on.
Being you fought this chance of freight hauling for the E & N and made really uninformed posts about coal and the various grades then we all know that your heart is only in rail if it goes the way you want it to and that's a far cry from being a rail supporter.  
 
When it comes to coal your lack of knowledge of the product shone like a beacon in the night. You going on about the various grades betrayed your complete lack of understand of the pricing and uses of coal.  
 
BTW any grade of coal can be coked and the coke is what is used to make steel. The various grades are priced to get the best product to coke and the most money for the supplier. The lower the grade the lower the price but the more it costs the steelmaker to process it. You still don't know what you are talking about but wail on because the end result will all be the same, the eventual total demise of the E & N.  
 
Posted by: George_Harris Posted on: Apr 29th, 2016, 10:23pm
From the Times Colonist April 8, 2016
Quote:
Compliance announced in February that the company was effectively insolvent and that all directors had stepped down. It blamed the “protracted” environmental assessment process for the withdrawal of key investors and the company’s inability to raise more money.
. . . .  
 
Compliance Energy had planned to extract 1.1 million tonnes of coal per year during peak production, with trucks or trains carrying the product to Port Alberni for shipping to steel-making markets in Japan and South Korea.
The company said in 2012 that the project would contribute $1.1 billion to local economies and create about 350 full-time jobs in the Comox Valley and Port Alberni over the 16-year life of the mine.

Notice:  “contribute $1.1 billion to local economies and create about 350 full-time jobs.”  You anti-coal people must be really proud of yourselves for stopping that much money from coming into the local economy and that many people from being able to get jobs.  Newsflash!!  There are sufficient environmental laws already in place to prevent most of these “the sky is falling” issues from occurring.
 
If the fear was trucks on the road, then the thing to have done would be to have pushed for the mine to agree to move the coal by rail.  All the destruction of sea critters, etc. was just simply noise about things that would not be allowed to happen under current regulations.
 
A few figures:  1,100,000 tonnes per year works out to about one 30 car train per day, assuming 100 tonnes per car.  If by truck at 35 net tonnes by truck, then we would be looking at about 100 trucks per day.  Now that could well be an issue.  As part of requiring the coal to move by rail, a contribution by the government to upgrading and maintaining the railroad using as a basis the cost avoidance by keeping this many trucks off the road.
 
There are many locations where the powers that be would all but kill to bring in a business that would employ 350 people.  If those in the government on Vancouver Island were at all reasonable, they would have been more than willing to help the mine get going, including offers (putting their money where their mouth is) to upgrade the railroad to be able to reliably handle the traffic.
 
As to all these wonderful sources of traffic listed in the post above, if ALL came to pass you are looking at only about 20 carloads per day, and most of the traffic sources listed appear to be in the realm of wishful thinking.
Posted by: HwyHaulier Posted on: Apr 30th, 2016, 11:08am
George - All Having Business Here - Lodge Members -
 
In yours, noted "... As part of requiring the coal to move by rail, a contribution by the government to upgrading and maintaining the  
railroad using as a basis the cost avoidance by keeping this many trucks off the road
..."...
 
Your writer, having watched this thread, has remained on the sidelines, as it evidently such parochial and xenophobic sets of issues.
Your writer, in an objective and holistic style, also strongly commends rail option here. Part of what you commend here? Realism compels
present line of track plant needs to be in state similar to that of traditional coal hauling lines. (That is, Much like BURLINGTON, B&O,  
PRR, et. al.) Money talks? Where is it?
 
Your writer without any enthusiasm for the 100 (one hundred) daily coal buckets on the highway system. In your thinking, reference  
to "...cost avoidance...". This simply the "costs" side of the ledgers. Whatever the "income" side? Highway users do pay fuel taxes, and  
many other fees and taxes. Established operators understand the "fair share" concepts, and work with it. A flaw being? The agencies  
in receipt of the income are weak and can't resist the very strong cash flows. So, they have ways of getting into diversions of the funds for  
endless (what they declare) "good other uses". A virtual "cookie jar"?
 
Again, your writer does not endorse "coal buckets" on the roads here, and in this possible application. We are simply in a rhetorical point  
in this instance...
 
.........................Vern...........................
Posted by: George_Harris Posted on: Apr 30th, 2016, 4:20pm
on Apr 30th, 2016, 11:08am, HwyHaulier wrote:       (Click here for original message)
George Your writer without any enthusiasm for the 100 (one hundred) daily coal buckets on the highway system. In your thinking, reference to "...cost avoidance...". This simply the "costs" side of the ledgers. Whatever the "income" side? Highway users do pay fuel taxes, and many other fees and taxes. Established operators understand the "fair share" concepts, and work with it. A flaw being? The agencies in receipt of the income are weak and can't resist the very strong cash flows. So, they have ways of getting into diversions of the funds for endless (what they declare) "good other uses". A virtual "cookie jar"?

Vern:  Yes, this is true.  Oversight on my part.  Elimination of squawks about extra traffic on the road would be more of an issue.  As to the use of the tax money received, Yes, I am a great believer in the ability of any government agency to waste any amount of money they can get their hands on.
Posted by: Dennis Dalla-Vicenza Posted on: Apr 30th, 2016, 11:44pm
Vern George et al
 
The fight against Raven was spearheaded by a group of pretend environmentalists and their band wagon was leaped on by a bunch of "No Coal" people from Port Alberni.  
 
If we look at the east coast we see that these pretend environmental types have killed hundreds of thousands of good high paying jobs by killing the steel industry with unreasonable demands for lower emission standards. Every time the industry met those standards the fools of the pretend environmental movement just demanded higher standards whether needed or not. Eventually the noise makers got their way and the steel industry succumbed to their stupidity.
 
Now the majority of structural steel is being manufactured in a country with absolutely no environment rules and with workers who have still not learned the proper ways to make structural quality steels. This is evidenced by the steel the city of Victoria can't get within the design specs for their new (and unnecessary) non-rail bridge. We are in a rapid decline in North America and our children will never have a great quality of life because we have allowed a squeaky wheel to get its way.
Posted by: CPRail4744 Posted on: May 1st, 2016, 12:05pm
Qutoing Above:
 
"Now the majority of structural steel is being manufactured in a country with absolutely no environment rules and with workers who have still not learned the proper ways to make structural quality steels. This is evidenced by the steel the city of Victoria can't get within the design specs for their new (and unnecessary) non-rail bridge. We are in a rapid decline in North America and our children will never have a great quality of life because we have allowed a squeaky wheel to get its way."
 
If indeed true, then OH, the painful irony of it all.  
Posted by: HwyHaulier Posted on: May 1st, 2016, 2:37pm
CPRail4744 _ Lodge Members -
 
Oh! Indeed! Brother GH remarks right on the mark. Your writer based in the Middle Atlantic, Northeast US. Personally saw all  
this disaster and sadness over the decades...
 
Used to be: Were one to travel on B & O RR #5, Washington to Chicago, it all there to see. B& O Trains crossed over to P&LE  
Main at McKeesport, PA, and ran it to New Castle, PA. There were active Steel plants all along the route. It an amazing sight!  
These days, all gone! Who ever wants filthy Steel plants in their towns?
 
Then, we have this all the rage, War on Coal set of issues. Here, the "...save the world..." folks and their work, they have shut  
down much of the Coal industry. See current NS and CSX "game stats"...
 
Maybe a Map and Guide to that one can tour around and see the dreary and endless towns, all collateral damages to the  
concerted efforts. Perhaps a Map to highlight all the old Coal and Steel Towns. Near all the residents wish they had it all back.  
None had opportunities to vote on any of it...
 
...............................Vern..............................
Posted by: chrisale Posted on: May 3rd, 2016, 11:04am
on Apr 29th, 2016, 10:23pm, George_Harris wrote:       (Click here for original message)
From the Times Colonist April 8, 2016
Notice:  “contribute $1.1 billion to local economies and create about 350 full-time jobs.”  You anti-coal people must be really proud of yourselves for stopping that much money from coming into the local economy and that many people from being able to get jobs.  Newsflash!!  There are sufficient environmental laws already in place to prevent most of these “the sky is falling” issues from occurring.
 
If the fear was trucks on the road, then the thing to have done would be to have pushed for the mine to agree to move the coal by rail.  All the destruction of sea critters, etc. was just simply noise about things that would not be allowed to happen under current regulations.
 
A few figures:  1,100,000 tonnes per year works out to about one 30 car train per day, assuming 100 tonnes per car.  If by truck at 35 net tonnes by truck, then we would be looking at about 100 trucks per day.  Now that could well be an issue.  As part of requiring the coal to move by rail, a contribution by the government to upgrading and maintaining the railroad using as a basis the cost avoidance by keeping this many trucks off the road.
 
There are many locations where the powers that be would all but kill to bring in a business that would employ 350 people.  If those in the government on Vancouver Island were at all reasonable, they would have been more than willing to help the mine get going, including offers (putting their money where their mouth is) to upgrade the railroad to be able to reliably handle the traffic.
 
As to all these wonderful sources of traffic listed in the post above, if ALL came to pass you are looking at only about 20 carloads per day, and most of the traffic sources listed appear to be in the realm of wishful thinking.

 
Raven had absolutely no interest in moving by rail and neither did the government have any interest in helping make that happen.  Take it from someone who dedicated a significant portion of their life over the better part of the past 10 years to try to make that happen.  In fact what they were willing to spend money on was a horne lake route 99% funded by provincial taxpayers for coal trucks that also had no support from the locals on the nanaimo side of the ridge or from first nations and would have put a final nail in the railways freight prospects while destroying municipal streets which themselves are funded almost exclusively by residential taxpayers.
 
It was a dream that really never had a chance.  Thermal Coal is dead.  The last coal mine on Vancouver Island just outside of Campbell River closed permanently last year.  Steel is fine.. but there are a million garbage sub metallurgical steel mines in the world that make Raven irrelevant.  
 
The railways future will be in a healthy mix of freight, passenger and commuter traffic.  There will be no Hail Mary.  As a concerned citizen recognizing the importance of a diverse transportation sector and as a Councillor for the City of Port Alberni seeing the benefits versus the road maintenance imposed on us by heavy trucking and the benefits of urban and semi-urban development around rail lines, I will continue to fight for that to happen. The first step is to get the infrastructure fixed up and I am glad that my municipal cohorts at the Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities supported Port Alberni's motion to urge the Feds to pony up and get things moving.
Posted by: Dennis Dalla-Vicenza Posted on: May 4th, 2016, 3:27pm
on May 3rd, 2016, 11:04am, chrisale wrote:       (Click here for original message)

 
Raven had absolutely no interest in moving by rail and neither did the government have any interest in helping make that happen.  Take it from someone who dedicated a significant portion of their life over the better part of the past 10 years to try to make that happen.  In fact what they were willing to spend money on was a horne lake route 99% funded by provincial taxpayers for coal trucks that also had no support from the locals on the nanaimo side of the ridge or from first nations and would have put a final nail in the railways freight prospects while destroying municipal streets which themselves are funded almost exclusively by residential taxpayers.
So by killing the project you and Snyder achieved what? Eff all but your own edification in your alleged minds. If the mine had of been supported (it was viable at the time) once operational and deliveries started it would have been a simple job to get SVI and ICF off their collective butts and have them offer a better deal. All your drivel about the mine not willing to spend on installing the railroad infrastructure just proves how little you know about the transportation business. It is the railroads job to facilitate the shipper not the other way around. Quote:

 
It was a dream that really never had a chance.  Thermal Coal is dead.  The last coal mine on Vancouver Island just outside of Campbell River closed permanently last year.  Steel is fine.. but there are a million garbage sub metallurgical steel mines in the world that make Raven irrelevant.
Again your ignorance of the issue shines like a beacon in the dark. All coal can be coked but in your knowledge base from years of doing nothing but collect government cheques you have deemed this to be untrue. Quote:

 
The railways future will be in a healthy mix of freight, passenger and commuter traffic.  There will be no Hail Mary.  As a concerned citizen recognizing the importance of a diverse transportation sector and as a Councillor for the City of Port Alberni seeing the benefits versus the road maintenance imposed on us by heavy trucking and the benefits of urban and semi-urban development around rail lines, I will continue to fight for that to happen. The first step is to get the infrastructure fixed up and I am glad that my municipal cohorts at the Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities supported Port Alberni's motion to urge the Feds to pony up and get things moving.
Why not call it as it is Christopher. It was your motion and your motion only so don't pretend others were involved. Can you tell us where this freight contingent of your promised healthy mix will be coming from? As usual you offer pretend solutions to a very real problem and just by you saying so does not conjure up magical freight shippers.  
Posted by: ENR3005 Posted on: May 18th, 2016, 10:44pm
It seems where we have failed, Baffin Island may get their own version of the Raven Coal project complete with a new railway. This will truly be an impressive undertaking if built in one of the most inhospitable places on this planet. Makes the Raven project look truly insignificant in terms of size. Couldn't imagine the operation of Dash9s and unit trains that far north on a large rock island in the artic. A great read.  
 
http://www.nunatsiaqonline.ca/stories/article/65674baffinland_milne_inlet-mary_river_railway_for_nunavut_iron_mine/
Posted by: Dennis Dalla-Vicenza Posted on: May 31st, 2016, 2:13am
We didn't fail. The pretend environmentalists and a local politician who hasn't a clue about coal or coke fought to kill this project. Like Mister Harris has said the rules in place would have assured the environmental compliance of the proposed mine but we had people with political aspirations and other devious manifestations which are still unknown bring the project to a halt.  
 
At every opportunity we have a group with dubious reasons stopping any and all development and these people have no problem demanding that progress comes to a stop to satisfy their demented demands. Pretending to be environmental with these demands for no progress is tiring to those in need of jobs.  
 
If you look at the claims of success by the local politicians we find that they only find progress as a manifestation of their own silly beliefs.  
 
Posted by: George_Harris Posted on: Apr 5th, 2017, 5:57pm
The thicken plots - - - oops:  The plot thickens.
 
Was wondering if anything more was happening with the mine and ran across this dated March 28, 2017 in Business Vancouver:
 
https://www.biv.com/article/2017/3/lawsuit-week-raven-coal-mine-project-unlawfully-sa/
 
It seems that other than the "no mine no way no where" groups there is the claim that the government is promoting natural gas and discouraging coal:
The article leads off with  
Quote:
Compliance Coal Corp. is suing the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency (CEEA) and the federal and provincial governments, claiming the approval process for a coal mining project on Vancouver Island was so convoluted that it was impossible for the company to satisfy.
Also in the article it states that in March 2015:
Quote:
Minister of Environment Mary Polak announced the government was pursuing a policy to promote B.C. natural gas abroad while other resource projects “may ‘have to be sacrificed,’”
and that  
Quote:
Soon after that announcement, Compliance president Steve Ellis got a phone call from Energy and Mines Minister Bill Bennett, who allegedly said the company’s application would be rejected if it didn’t voluntarily withdraw, and didn’t provide any reason or explanation for the demand.
None of this had been noted in other information seen in this thread, but if this is true, all the arm waving by the anti-mining and anti anything else in the manufacturing way would be nothing but a smoke screen, apparently provided with enthusiasm by them, hiding an outcome predetermined by the Provincial government.
Posted by: Dennis Dalla-Vicenza Posted on: Apr 7th, 2017, 8:00pm
George, councilor Moonbeam will deny that from the git-go because he doesn't support the Right leaning Liberals in power here in BC. The guy hasn't the smarts to figure out he was manipulated by others in their quest to kill the project and thereby improve their share values in the retirement packages they earned while living in the oil patch.  
 
There is also renewed work being done in the coal mines at the north end of the BC rail line out to Tumbler ridge but being we were assured by "moron-is-us" that the coal mines were all a thing of the past neither of us can be posting the truth. the youngster of today grew up in the belief that everyone is a winner and their actually losing is lost on them.
Posted by: George_Harris Posted on: Apr 8th, 2017, 12:12am
on Apr 7th, 2017, 8:00pm, Dennis Dalla-Vicenza wrote:       (Click here for original message)
George, councilor Moonbeam . . . .  

Who is councilor Moonbeam?  Down here in the lower 48 of the US, "Moonbeam" refers to governor Moonbeam, otherwise known as Jerry Brown, governor of the state of California, which is also by the way referred to by many as the PRK, or People's Republic of Kalifornia, in reference to many of the actions and pronouncements of the state government's legislature and various agencies.
 
By the way, I am of the  opinion that in the future the emphasis on burning oil and gas instead of coal is going to look extraordinarily shortsighted and downright stupid as we are consuming in large quantities in large power plants the best sources of fuel for use in small power plants, such as cars, lawnmowers, saws, and power plants that need to be lightweight such as airplane engines, while letting sources such as coal and nuclear sit in the ground that are only practical for use in large to massive consumers of power such as electrical generating plants.  I would love to see someone go out and use a coal powered hedge clipper.
Posted by: Dennis Dalla-Vicenza Posted on: Apr 8th, 2017, 1:11am
Chrisales is councilor Moonbeam. I wish I could lay claims to being the originator of the moniker but that honour belongs to a buddy of mine who lead the charge from Port Alberni.
Posted by: George_Harris Posted on: Apr 11th, 2017, 5:59pm
Being who we are and our interests we have taken this issue as it relates to the railroad, however undoubtably of far more significance to the people of the island is the disappearance of some 350 jobs that would last some 20 plus years.   The railroad would employ some 20 more or less jobs for the same time period (2 to 3 train crews plus some number of maintenance people for track and equipment)
 
As I continue to say, all these "don't build anything anywhere" people must believe that people don't need to work or otherwise do anything useful to have an income. That is they do not have any acquaintance with reality, and IMHO should not be allowed to be loose without a keeper.  Sorry, we are not all independently wealthy and even if we were, someone would have to do the necessary for these independently wealthy to eat, have a roof over our heads and all the other things needed for normal living.
 
I have no sympathy for them.
Posted by: Dennis Dalla-Vicenza Posted on: Apr 11th, 2017, 7:32pm
on Apr 11th, 2017, 5:59pm, George_Harris wrote:       (Click here for original message)
Being who we are and our interests we have taken this issue as it relates to the railroad, however undoubtably of far more significance to the people of the island is the disappearance of some 350 jobs that would last some 20 plus years.   The railroad would employ some 20 more or less jobs for the same time period (2 to 3 train crews plus some number of maintenance people for track and equipment)
 
As I continue to say, all these "don't build anything anywhere" people must believe that people don't need to work or otherwise do anything useful to have an income. That is they do not have any acquaintance with reality, and IMHO should not be allowed to be loose without a keeper.  Sorry, we are not all independently wealthy and even if we were, someone would have to do the necessary for these independently wealthy to eat, have a roof over our heads and all the other things needed for normal living.
 
I have no sympathy for them.
You have to know also that the three movers and shakers of this fiasco with killing Raven Coal were a bunch of egotists. One has a job that is 100% funded by provincial tax money. One has a husband whose business is bout 95% funded by federal tax money and lots of it and the third is a retired tar sands employee who has a pension which was funded 100% by the oil industry.  
 
At some point in time people will have to be informed about these nitwits and start to think for themselves. Swe are again approaching another provincial election and the local yokel councilor is already berating the candidate for one party because he believes in a strong business presence on the Island. The bofo councilor thinks we can have a strong freight presence on the Island without the necessity of industry. I wonder at what he was taught in school because smarts wan't bhigh on the curriculum.