Monday night’s league produced our senior bowlers of the week. Alanda Boldt led the females with games of 220-232-169 on her way to a 621 series.Who else but the “Chief” C.J. Moity leading the way for the old guys. “Chief” was able to hang in there all three games by shooting 191-254-236 for a 681 set.The Stars of Tomorrow, the Saturday morning youth league at The Max, had Brandon Bertrand continuing to produce top numbers as he rolled games of 182-179-186 for a nice 547 series. Close by was Blaine Seymour. Blaine put together a set of 509 by throwing games of 173-158-172. Stars of Tomorrow: Blaine Seymour 173-503, Brandon Bertrand 186-547, Ryan Thomas 134-348, Anthony Hernandez 124-317. As the lanes continue to heat up at the Max, Monday night’s Valero League and Thursday night’s Energy Country Ford League produced this week’s high scorers.The highlight of the week was brought to us by Jamie Engle. Jamie cranked out 12 perfect shots as he nailed down the 49th 300 of his career. He did this bowling in the Thursday night league.Thursday night also produced the high bowlers of the week. George Gund hammered the lanes with games of 226-279-236 for a league-leading 741 set. Sami Jo Williams is back in the papers as she led the women this week. Sami Jo shot impressive games of 201-235-257 for a 713 series. The Texas Mixed Tournament have a couple of local bowlers in the top 10 in a couple of categories. As the local groups continue to invade Grand Prairie; let Janice know of any high games or honor scores achieved in Grand Prairie, and she will get it into the column.Until next week bowlers, good bowling. …700s: Sami Jo Williams 221-235-247-703, Sami Jo Williams 221-235-257-713, George Gund 226-279-236-741, George Duke 217-243-240-700, Charles Mitchell 247-267-213-727.Monday Seniors: Beverly Wallace 117-322, Stephanie Harrison 161-445, Sylvia Thomas 126-362, Elvira Jones 162-382, John Robison 216-533, James Pitre 193-515, Cynthia Williams 166-457, Roberta DuFour 141-394, Stacie Williams 158-409, Bill Lawless 179-462.Valero: Farrell Menard 157-424, John Parent 214-574, Stan Ruth 223-529, Bruce VanBoskirk 169-451, Aaron Vanover 201-552, Jeremy Tremonte 214-539, Derrick Rivers 223-600, Erick Brown 257-655, Alvin Ford 211-574, Darel LeBlanc 236-603, Wesley Patterson 257-581, Jessry Twin 196-558, Mark Maxwell 232-564, Justin Cates 188-509, Dean Wersig 232-631, Debbie Schuster 145-407, Trey Todora 246-638, Kirwin Melo 242-593, Patsy Ronquille 181-441, Alanda Boldt 232-621, Bryan Boldt 224-599, Alice Barnes 199-518, James Pitre 191-537, Alex Hanks 203-520, Jeff Hooks 147-417, John Tatroe 155-384, Stacey Thornberg 123-330, Zach Wiley 196-520, Zachary Beckett 213-619, Lancer Sylvester 233-643, Kevin Smith 233-634, Herbert Goffney 195-517, Les Perrin 171-435, Kyle Miller 220-506, Kat Douglas 201-580, Chris Heath 155-397, Maryana Kimball 176-452, Shannon O’Connor 209-508, Robert Seymour 203-537, Gail Seymour 172-485, Danny Cooper 157-428, Georgia McElroy 142-366, Joe Duke 203-521, Rhett Williford 255-682, CJ Moity 254-681, Ryan Smith 211-629, Bob Cullums 236-622.Road Runners: Frank Rios 172-500, Hedy Zampini 164-434, Randy Zampini 178-507, John Anderson 177-466, Cynthia Williams 153-395, Bill Allen 206-541, Blanch Comeaux 160-456, Bill Lawless 197-483, Charlotte Banks 159-435, John Greig 150-403.Queen Tumblers: June Badon 167-444, Emily Davis 117-305, Frances Boudreaux 162-425, Mimi Rose 135-356, Betty Shannon 166-476, Elsie Tweedel 143-388, Janice Todora 151-442, Joyce Porter 122-327, Connie Mathison 164-478, Beverly Wallace 118-325, Jackie Schell 154-421, Rene Pulver 190-474, Rita Hicks 166-465.Golden Oldies: Nan Chaisson 150-434, Rick Hermsen 235-640, Bonnie Timaeus 150-403, Geraldine Rebert 167-454, Frankie Hall 172-446, Mary Kay Rios 148-416, Frank Rios 177-477, Phil Rogers 185-456, Blanch Comeaux 183-486, Tommy Girolamo 244-648, Cliff Mosley 195-524, James Pitre 238-613, Gloria Divello 196-524, Bill Lawless 192-522, Cindy Hebert 120-323, Gary Vincent 172-459, Randy Zampini 195-505, William Gore 162-442, Hedy Zampini 202-525, Art Leon 164-462, Robert Seymour 204-559, Chris Heath 179-458, Paul Vaughan 201-569, Lewis Garza 172-490, VJ Willis 215-521, Venix Morris 188-458.Mid-County Mixed: Mita Ikari 132-339, Vladie Quirante 169-470, Tessie Balagot 175-463, Rose Quirante 152-435, Bruce VanBoskirk 189-441.Fun Bowlers: Taylor Day 179-486, Zack Sonnier 181-522, Aaron Wersig 204-482, Casey Smith 231-651, Sue Rikoff 189-523, Burton Wilson 201-566, Tyler Rikoff 221-568, Steve Killion 163-450, Ed Zuschlag 159-424, Ron Carlin 156-385, Micha Muller 192-509, Bobby Abraham 160-470, Terri McElhose 148-417, Ron McElhose 170-401, Julie Crane 211-592, Charlene Wersig 214-520, Carl Quinn 228-584, Dean Wersig 235-611, Mark Hall 192-523, Mia Benoit 130-327, Jason Wilson 169-429, Dwayne Benoit 189-525, Kerry Stevens 191-547, Stuart Ellis 194-574, Willie Linder 168-430, Khristopher Colbert 174-452, Amy Burch 165-442, Debbie Schuster 136-368, Murphy Burch 269-661, Steve Schuster 228-659, Anna Commorato 169-411, William Barker 210-557, Diron Owens 165-418, Jeremy Jones 185-438, Mike Wagner 187-477.Energy Country Ford: Tommy Pham 176-459, Jason Minh Houng 200-546, Tommy Tran 194-509, Kevin Tran 216-573, Jamie Engle 300-678, Joann Williams 198-492, Kirwin Melo 233-600, Trint Miguez 250-602, Paul Vaughan 224-571, Rick Hermsen 225-609, Leroy Villerreal 143-347, John May 163-437, Michael Palermo 210-512, Glenn Wolfe 226-625, Joe Wolfe 209-544, Ben Wolfe 232-646, Derik Gund 222-636, Travis Johnson 218-575, Rhonda Stout 214-609, Jason Nettelbeck 202-530, John Allen 203-570, Jonathan Martin 209-539, Matt Mannino 225-617, Aaron Richardson 167-425, Mark Maxwell 242-607, Judy Arsenault 194-522, Tammy Nick 176-462, Bubba Lejune 180-489, Renee Moity 221-553, Eric Harrington 246-683, Chayla Merritt 141-377, Chris Merritt 236-640, Bob Grusecki 238-677, Chris Rhodes 236-609, Joe Duke 190-510, Georgia McElroy 123-329, Bob Bellow 256-639, CJ Moity 237-661, Danny Duke 208-549, Troy Laabs 247-658, Jacob McConnell 226-644, James Moity 255-682, Jake Glenn 202-567, Ray Todora 214-566, Eric Manthei 288-685, Linda Singleton 165-491, Gloria Divello 210-564, Chuck Clark 177-501, John Ramsey 196-533, Chase Leger 194-554, Rex Morris 190-530, Linda Morris 170-485, Belinda Humphrey 201-564, Dennis Humphrey 185-514, Zim Morris 210-565, Laura Scully 230-554, Walt Homick 191-534, Kody Rountree 192-497, Michael Chandler 226-573, Erik Postula 215-585, Gary Martin 258-681, Ryan Worthy 202-556, George Parsley 247-612, David Pulver 166-458, Rene Pulver 170-455, Mason Ewell 190-425, Gerard Fresnido 150-420, Chris O’Connor 137-372, Missy O’Connor 193-460, Jamaal Lowe 208-604, Mike Jacquet 235-597, Tommy Girolamo 220-636, Jason Beavens 201-563, Aaron Beavens 223-593, Troy Girolamo 229-625, Alice Barnes 230-576, Michael Morvant 192-520, Janice Todora 164-410, Blake Dugas 215-602, Tyler Combs 236-606, Logan Cain 179-442, Giles Broussard 162-446, Chris Chance 217-543, Craig Rankin 190-497, Cody Rich 181-481, Belinda Powell 230-662, Bill White 230-591, Marcus Joseph 171-444, Gary Biegas 205-493, James Robinson 216-522, Dennis Thompson 205-582, James Mikel 249-602, Leroy Young 217-582, Drew McClary 235-581, Larry Witzleben 212-541, Randy Callahan 174-504, Joy Morse 145-388, Darrell Hagler 164-434, Sandra Windham 226-621.
Diversion to Disbarment, the Florida lawyer discipline system The summary of disciplinary actions is often the first section many attorneys turn to when they receive the latest edition of The Florida Bar News. For some, it is like a driver rubbernecking past an accident scene to see what happened and if someone they know was involved. For others, it is to learn from their peers’ mistakes in order to help them remain ethical and professional in their own practices. While many may be interested in the disciplinary cases, few realize the complexity of the lawyer regulation system and how the cases work their way through the system.The PlayersThe ultimate authority to discipline lawyers in Florida rests with the Florida Supreme Court. The Florida Bar, as an arm of the Florida Supreme Court, serves in a number of capacities, including intake, screening, and investigation of inquiries and complaints, ultimately prosecuting appropriate cases and arguing appeals of cases before the Florida Supreme Court. Lawyers and public members make up the local grievance committees, which investigate cases that have made it past the preliminary screening and investigation stages. Grievance committees conduct further investigation, and serve in a grand jury-type role in determining whether probable cause of a disciplinary violation exists.A case in which probable cause is found is then filed with the Florida Supreme Court. The court appoints a county judge, circuit judge, or senior judge to serve as the referee to conduct the trial of the case, which is prosecuted by Florida Bar counsel. Upon conclusion of the trial, the referee issues a report containing findings of fact, conclusions of law, recommendations regarding guilt for each violation charged, and recommendations on sanctions.The Florida Bar Board of Governors serves in an oversight role at all stages of the disciplinary review process. Each elected board member serves as the “designated reviewer” of the cases that come before grievance committees in their circuit. In addition, many board members serve on the board’s largest committee — the Disciplinary Review Committee, which oversees the prosecution and appeals of disciplinary cases. The Disciplinary Review Committee makes recommendations to the full Board of Governors as to whether the Bar should — among other things — overturn grievance committee actions or appeal the decisions of the referees, including findings regarding guilt and the recommended sanctions.The Florida Supreme Court reviews the reports of the referee and any arguments in the event of an appeal or request for briefing, makes the final determination of whether the respondent is guilty, and issues the appropriate sanction.The Expense of The Florida Bar Disciplinary SystemThe Florida Bar fields thousands of inquiries and complaints against Florida lawyers each year. Of those, following preliminary screening, an annual average of nearly 7,600 discipline cases are opened. It is extremely costly to investigate all the complaints that are filed and to prosecute those that make it past the investigative stages. In addition to other professional staff that assist in all aspects of the lawyer regulation system, The Florida Bar employs 32 attorneys who serve as Bar counsel located in five branch offices across Florida. The legal profession is self-regulated, and no public funds are spent on lawyer discipline. Costs of prosecution of each case are typically taxed against an attorney found guilty of misconduct. While the Bar is projecting that recoupment of those costs will yield just over $730,000 in revenue this year, the bulk of the costs for attorney discipline is borne by lawyers funded by annual membership fees. The projected cost attributable to attorney discipline in the 2013-14 fiscal year is in excess of $14 million, comprising approximately 35 percent of the expenses in the Bar’s budget.Possible SanctionsThere are a number of different potential disciplinary sanctions that a lawyer faces after being found guilty of a disciplinary violation.(1) Disbarment. Disbarment is the most severe sanction. If not otherwise specified, a disbarred lawyer can seek readmission after five years by applying through the Florida Board of Bar Examiners (which would require retaking the bar exam and undergoing a new character and fitness review). Some disbarments specify a longer period of time before a disbarred attorney can seek readmission, and the court can order permanent disbarment. Disbarments are common in situations involving attorneys who have lied, cheated, stolen, had serious trust account violations, or been convicted of a felony.(2) Disbarment on Consent / Disciplinary Revocation. Sometimes attorneys decide not to contest the charges that have been filed and choose to surrender their Bar license in lieu of defending against disciplinary proceedings. That process has taken on several different names over the years, including disbarment on consent and disciplinary revocation, and is considered “tantamount to disbarment.” Florida Bar v. Hale, 762 So. 2d 515, 517 (Fla. 2000).” R. Regulating Fla. Bar 3-7.12, comment. As with disbarments, unless a longer time is specified, the minimum time between a disciplinary revocation/disbarment on consent and eligibility to apply for readmission to the Bar is five years.(3) Suspension. Suspensions can range from one day to three years. Every suspension requires a lawyer to wind down his or her practice within 30 days before the effective date of the suspension. During the 30-day wind-down period, a suspended lawyer is prohibited from taking on new cases, and must certify to the Bar that he or she has mailed a copy of the suspension order to all clients, opposing counsel, and judges before whom he or she has cases. There are two types of suspensions: rehabilitative and non-rehabilitative suspensions.(a) Non-Rehabilitative Suspension (90 days or less). A lawyer suspended for 90 days or less is automatically reinstated upon the completion of the suspension, and can then immediately begin practicing law without any further action.(b) Rehabilitative Suspension (91 days to 3 years). A suspension for 91 days or more is a “rehabilitative suspension,” which requires the lawyer to prove rehabilitation before he or she is eligible for reinstatement. For example, a lawyer suspended for 180 days is not automatically eligible to practice law on the 181st day. Instead, that suspended lawyer must establish that he or she has been rehabilitated before being eligible to practice again. The reinstatement process can take several months, as Bar counsel must investigate the petition for reinstatement, and the matter goes back to the original referee for a hearing.Suspended lawyers who practice law while suspended are treated as being in contempt of court, and could subject themselves to a lengthier suspension or possibly disbarment.(4) Felony Suspension or Emergency Suspension. There are two additional types of interim suspensions that are entered on an emergency basis while an underlying disciplinary case is being prosecuted. The Bar typically requests an immediate suspension when a lawyer is convicted of a felony. Also, when there is evidence that a lawyer has stolen money, for the protection of the public, the Bar will often petition the Florida Supreme Court to enter an immediate emergency suspension until resolution of the underlying disciplinary case. Finally, a suspension or disbarment of a lawyer in another jurisdiction is also grounds for an emergency suspension. R. Regulating Fla. Bar 3-7.2(l)(2).(5) Public Reprimand. Another potential sanction is a public reprimand. Public reprimands are reported with other Florida Supreme Court decisions in the Southern Reporter, and published in the News and on the Bar’s website. Some public reprimands are administered before the Board of Governors; others are administered by letter.(6) Probation. There are a number of probationary measures that can be ordered in connection with discipline, either as the sole discipline or in addition to other disciplinary measures. Probation can include mandatory meetings with and audits by an accountant, meetings with a mental health professional, drug and alcohol testing, reporting requirements, or other conditions.(7) Admonishment. An admonishment for minor misconduct is the lowest form of discipline. An admonishment can be contained in a Supreme Court order, or may be issued by a grievance committee or the Board of Governors. Alternatively, a grievance committee may refer a lawyer alleged to be guilty of minor misconduct to diversion (see below) in lieu of a disciplinary sanction.(8) Other Measures. Other measures also can be ordered in addition to the sanctions described above, such as a requirement that the respondent pay restitution, arbitrate a fee dispute, disgorge attorneys’ fees or ill-gotten gains, or retake the ethics portion of the bar exam. The respondent also could be ordered to complete a practice and professional enhancement program, such as:* Ethics school,* Stress management workshop,* Trust and accounting workshop,* Advertising workshop,* Referral to Florida Lawyers Assistance, Inc. (FLA, Inc.) and possible requirement to enter into a rehabilitative contract,* Referral to Law Office Management Assistance Service (LOMAS) for practice management assistance,* Requirement to complete additional CLE hours in a particular area.Alternatives to Discipline – DiversionFor relatively minor transgressions, an accused attorney’s grievance matter may be diverted or removed from the discipline process, with one or more conditions, such as the completion of a practice and professionalism enhancement program. Diversion is not considered “discipline” that would remain on an attorney’s permanent record.The NumbersAn average of nearly 7,600 discipline cases were opened each year over the past five years. Approximately 25 percent of those cases are forwarded to the branch offices for further investigation. In the most recent year for which the Bar has statistics, grievance committees voted on more than 320 cases, which resulted in a probable cause finding on at least one rule violation in about 30 percent of the cases, and a finding of no probable cause in slightly more than half of the cases.The five-year average of disciplinary sanctions imposed annually includes 80 disbarments, 142 suspensions, 40 public reprimands, 41 admonishments, and 40 probation orders. In addition, an average of 21 lawyers were felony suspended on an emergency basis. A number of alternatives to discipline were also imposed, including an annual average of 112 orders of diversion.This 10,000-foot overview of the Florida attorney disciplinary system provides only a glimpse into the Bar’s system of self-regulation of its lawyers. This system is designed to rehabilitate wayward lawyers, punish them when appropriate, and, in the most severe cases, remove the worst offenders from the profession in order to prevent them from harming clients in the future. Equally important, this system is in place in order to protect the public and ensure confidence in the legal profession. Special thanks to Ken Marvin, director of Lawyer Regulation, and Arne Vanstrum, associate director of Lawyer Regulation, for their contributions to this article.Brian D. Burgoon has served as an out-of-state member of The Florida Bar Board of Governors since 2000, served as 2013-14 chair of The Florida Bar Disciplinary Review Committee, and served on The Florida Bar Executive Committee. He also served as a member of the statewide Hawkins Commission on Review of the Discipline System. He practices business litigation, civil litigation, and personal injury with The Burgoon Law Firm in Atlanta.If you have questions about filing a complaint against a lawyer, you may contact the Florida Bar’s Attorney Consumer Assistance Program (ACAP) hotline at toll free 1-866-352-0707. Dec 01, 2013 Brian D. Burgoon Disciplinary Review Committee Chair Regular News
Gophers down Northwestern 20-17Jerry Kill was watching over his team from the press box. Jack SatzingerOctober 19, 2013Jump to CommentsShare on FacebookShare on TwitterShare via EmailPrintEVANSTON, Ill. — The Gophers are back and so is their head coach Jerry Kill — sort of.Minnesota, fresh off a bye week, beat Northwestern 20-17 on the road. It was led by a strong defensive effort, but the story of the game might have been Kill’s presence.Kill, who took a leave of absence to focus on his epilepsy treatment earlier this month, did not coach Saturday, but was in attendance and watched his team from the coaches’ box.At halftime, with the game tied 7-7, Kill was spotted walking out of the press box elevator and into the coaches’ box.Gophers acting head coach Tracy Claeys said earlier this week that he doubted Kill would be at the game and said he didn’t even know if Kill would watch the game.A University spokesperson told the Daily that Kill and his wife, Rebecca, drove to watch the game. That spokesperson said Kill decided he couldn’t watch the game from home.Though Kill was in attendance, the spokesperson was adamant that “nothing has changed” about Kill’s status.Closer to a bowlSaturday’s victory marks the Gophers’ first Big Ten win of the season and just their second Big Ten road win in the Jerry Kill era. Now with five wins in hand, Minnesota needs just one more victory this season to become bowl eligible. It has five games left on the schedule.Two QB System?In a game against Northwestern, something to watch for is its two-quarterback system.It was Minnesota, however, that used multiple quarterbacks Saturday.Mitch Leidner started the game, but Philip Nelson came in midway through the second quarter to execute an eight-play, 82-yard touchdown drive.That sequence gave Minnesota its first score of the game after the offense sputtered through much of the first half. Nelson completed eight of 11 passes for 112 yards and one touchdown in the game. It was just the second time this season Nelson finished a game without throwing an interception.Northwestern had trouble maintaining consistency on offense without dual-threat quarterback Kain Colter. Colter usually splits playing time with Trevor Siemian, who threw two interceptions and fumbled a ball after being sacked.That defensive pressure, combined with efficient play from Nelson, was enough for the Gophers to get the victory with their head coach looking on from above.
Jul 12, 2012 (CIDRAP News) – The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said today that a big genome sequencing project it is launching with private and public partners will help speed up the identification of bacteria that cause foodborne disease outbreaks.The aim of the project is to create a public database of the genomes of about 100,000 foodborne pathogen isolates, including strains of important agents such as Salmonella, Listeria, and pathogenic Escherichia coli, the FDA said.”The database will provide a roadmap for development of tests to identify pathogens and provide information about the origin of the pathogen,” the agency said. “The tests have the potential to significantly reduce the typical public health response time in outbreaks of foodborne illness to days instead of weeks.”The FDA’s major partners in the project are the University of California, Davis (UC Davis); Agilent Technologies, Inc.; and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The effort—conceived by UC Davis, the FDA, and Agilent—is called the 100K Genome Project. It’s expected to take 5 years.”Open access to the database will allow researchers to develop tests that can identify the type of bacteria present in a sample within a matter of days or hours, significantly faster than the approximately one week it now takes between diagnosis and genetic analysis,” the FDA said.The FDA said it is providing more than 500 completed Salmonella whole-genome sequences, thousands of additional important food pathogen strains for sequencing, and bioinformatic support. FDA scientists also will help guide the project and provide technical assistance when needed.Agilent is providing scientific expertise, instrumentation, and funding to support a portion of UC Davis activities, the FDA said. The CDC will provide its foodborne disease expertise, isolates to be sequenced, and other information, and CDC experts will serve on the steering committee for the project.Another partner will be the US Department of Agriculture’s (USDA’s) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), the announcement said. The agency will submit bacterial strains from its testing program for sequencing, said Elizabeth Hagen, USDA under secretary for food safety.The genomic sequencing will be coordinated by UC Davis, which is also providing access to its collection of bacteria samples, the FDA reported. The sequencing will be done at the newly formed BGI @UC Davis genome sequencing facility.”This landmark project harnesses UC Davis’ partnership with BGI, a world leader in genomics, to mine information about the most deadly foodborne pathogens,” said Harris Lewin, vice chancellor for research at UC Davis, in the press release. BGI, a Chinese firm, was formerly known as the Beijing Genomics Institute. Lewin predicted that the project would “revolutionize our basic understanding of these disease-causing microorganisms.”The FDA said the new database “will significantly speed testing of raw ingredients, finished products, and environmental samples taken during investigation of foodborne illness outbreaks.”The statement adds, “When used as part of an overall surveillance and outbreak investigation system, the genetic information in the new database, in combination with geographic information about the pathogens, will help public health officials more quickly pinpoint the source of contamination responsible for a foodborne outbreak.”Completed sequences will be stored in the public database of the National Institutes of Health’s National Center for Biotechnology Information, the agency said.UC Davis is currently working to form a consortium to support the project, with participants such as public health laboratories, food manufacturers, and academic organizations, officials said.See also: Jul 12 FDA press releasehttp://www.fda.gov/NewsEvents/Newsroom/PressAnnouncements/ucm311661.htmRelated FDA consumer updatehttp://www.fda.gov/ForConsumers/ConsumerUpdates/ucm311086.htm
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APPEA Chairman Rob Cole presented the award at Tuesday night’s APPEA 2014 Conference Dinner in Perth. He said the judges concluded that Chevron Australia demonstrated overall excellence against a broad suite of criteria.Chevron’s Operational Excellence Management System enables employees, team leaders and senior staff to evaluate environmental performance, seek continuous improvement and strive for environmental excellence.Chevron also engages with independent expert panels, advisory committees and community reference groups to further improve its environmental planning and program delivery. Chevron’s formal Environmental Stewardship process communicates its core value of protecting the environment to the entire workforce.This includes expectations that staff will: diligently implement environmental plans;• always consider environmental risks;• seek ways to demonstrate good environmental stewardship; and• contribute to the ongoing improvement of Chevron Australia’s environmental performance.Cole said Chevron Australia has a long history of cutting-edge environmental management. “For more than 50 years, the company has operated on Barrow Island, a Class A Nature Reserve,” he said. “During this time, Chevron has successfully protected the island’s conservation values.”[mappress]Source: APPEA, April 08, 2014 Chevron Australia has won the Australian Petroleum Production & Exploration Association (APPEA) Environment Excellence Award.
Petrobras said it made a discovery of hydrocarbons in the exploratory Orca-1 well, located 40 kilometers north of the coast of Guajira province.This is the first discovery in deep waters of the Colombian Caribbean.The Orca-1 well was drilled within the Tayrona block and has as its operating company Petrobras, with a 40% stake, in partnership with Ecopetrol (30%) and Repsol (30%). The Tayrona block was the first contract granted in 2004 by the National Hydrocarbons Agency for exploration in the Colombian Caribbean.The well reached the expected depth of 13,910 feet (4,243 meters), in water depth of 2,211 feet (674 meters). Drilling was completed in September and showed the accumulation of natural gas at a depth of 12,000 feet (3,657 meters).Orca-1’s results confirm the hydrocarbon potential of this Colombian frontier basin and demonstrate the capacity of the petroleum system in the deep part of the offshore basin.Following completion of this phase of exploration and initial tests, in-depth technical studies will begin to determine gas potential of the discovery.[mappress mapid=”16136″]Press Release; Image: Petrobras
Marsol International, a Dubai-based marine solutions provider, has launched a specialist Emergency Pipeline Repair Service (EPRS) to safeguard shallow water intertidal zones.EPRS has been developed over the last six years to service all types of environmental situations and geotechnical configurations, to address the inherent challenge of accessing delicate areas not normally serviced from sea or shore.Marsol International said it has worked with various partners to develop multipurpose tools and equipment capable of work in dry areas, the intertidal zone and subsea.Mike Young, managing director of Marsol International, said: “Marsol has a strong team of engineers who understand first-hand the real-life scenarios on a busy oil export hub. We have identified a need to offer an emergency service to protect pipelines in shallow waters, and we have the skills and equipment to manage the challenges intertidal zones present, such as shifting sands and tides. Marsol has worked to develop sophisticated support assets such as Rhino craft and Versadock – products that have been tried and tested in hostile and difficult environments.“Should a pipeline require repair, time is of the essence. Safeguarding against environmental damage, minimising the impact on production and ultimately protecting company reputation is vital – EPRS offers an experienced team who can act fast. That said, we firmly believe that prevention is better than cure, so Marsol also offers a pre-emptive Pipeline Integrity Management service to ensure all bases are covered.”Marsol plans to utilise the company’s offshore terminal and marine workforce to locate and stabilise the ground to access damaged pipelines in the intertidal zone, and to implement the requisite pipeline repair. Repair scenarios such as pipeline rupture, pin-hole leak, dents and buckles, internal and external pipeline pitting and problems due to corrosion are considered pipeline emergencies.According to the company, EPRS will be driven by the nature of the pipeline failure or damage, the pipeline size and specification, as well as the site location and offers a complete range of specialised equipment required to work in intertidal zones, including multi-purpose amphibious units, amphibious excavators, modular trench shoring systems and all-terrain/amphibious personnel carriers.
ABS, a provider of classification and technical services to the global offshore industry, has granted approval in principle (AIP) to a Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI) floating liquefied natural gas (FLNG) hull design.Specifically conceptualized for near-shore operations, the vessel was designed with a length of 1,050 ft (320 m), a breadth of 197 ft (60 m), and a 39-ft (12 m) draft, with LNG storage capacity of 200,000 cum using the GTT MARK III technology.ABS stated that the current state of the energy markets presents an opportunity for companies to be innovative and competitive by reducing engineering, procurement and commissioning costs.According to HHI, the near-shore FLNG hull concept design delivers an estimated one-third cost reduction compared to a standard FLNG hull.The classification society said its team collaborated with HHI in a joint development project (JDP) with the objective of developing a technically feasible and price-competitive FLNG hull design by adopting the latest industry standards and advanced shipbuilding practices, while maintaining high safety standards.“ABS has a history of helping the industry move forward by evaluating novel designs,” says ABS Chairman, President and CEO Christopher J. Wiernicki. “Our joint development project with HHI is another example of the trust our clients place in ABS’ technical leadership.”“In this depressed gas market, developing a price-competitive, near-shore FLNG hull with ABS could lead to providing the FLNG market with a novel approach to reduce the risks experienced in recent offshore EPC projects,” says Yun-Sik Lee, Executive Vice President, Shipbuilding Division at HHI.
City law firms do not generally see alternative business structures as attractive, because they are reluctant to cede control of the firm to source external funding that they do not need. This is one conclusion of the first of a series of studies looking at the supply of legal services in England and Wales, commissioned by the Legal Services Board. Carried by consultancy Charles Rivers Associates, the study considers the regulation of City firms and how they operate in the legal services market. The report adds: ‘[City firms do not] see huge demand for providing a wider range of services beyond the experts that they are currently able to bring in-house anyway. ‘In addition, offering a wider set of services, and having partners who are not lawyers, brings complications for international law firms that have a presence in jurisdictions where ABSs are not permitted.’ A separate study, also published by the LSB today, considers the activities of so-called ‘special bodies’ – not-for-profit organisations which conduct reserved legal activities. Carried out by Frontier Economics, the research was compiled from sources, including interviews with Citizens Advice and the Law Centres Federation. The research highlights the challenges faced by the sector in delivering quality assured services against a backdrop of greatly reduced funding and variable quality assurance mechanisms. Go to the Legal Services Board website for more information.