24 November 2011

Hebron benefits less than touted #nlpoli

The companies developing the Hebron oil field offshore Newfoundland and Labrador won’t be doing as much of the construction work in the province as some people might have believed.

According to the Telegram, Kiewit’s yard ay Marystown “is being looked at” to build the drilling support module, the accommodation module is supposed to go to Bull Arm, but a third module that could be built here is looking doubtful.

And as the news starts to mount that maybe the local benefits from Hebron are a lot less than some people believed, you should remember the golden words as they slipped so effortlessly from Hisself’s golden tongue:

… this agreement reflects our resolute determination to maximize the benefits that Newfoundland and Labrador receives from the development of all our resources.

Surely Hisself would not have said it were it not so.

But as it turns out he did and it wasn’t.

And what of Hisself’s former shield maiden in the fight to maximise benefits?  What did she say of the August agreement?

Kathy Dunderdale talked of unprecedented local industrial commitments and “ maximizing industrial benefits.” 

Surely she would not have said it, were it not so.

But it turns out she did and it wasn’t.

They both talked about the “co-venturers”, a wonderful bit of spin-speak about the companies who would develop the project and decide where the work would go.

One of those “co-venturers” is – of course – the provincial government’s own energy company.  that’s what the Hebron racket was really all about, as it turns out.

People should take another look at the Hebron agreement.  Well, at least the limited bits that have been made public. They should check the bits with the little stars by them in the news release issued by one of the co-venturers.

Then look again at what one of the co-venturers told us about maximising benefits and ‘unprecedented local commitments.

And then see if there’s a sale on salt down at Dominion because The Lord Hisself knows you’ll be taking every one of those rosy promises with as much Sifto as you can choke down.

There is the public interest and there is the interest of the oil companies.

The Hebron development agreement signed in 2008 turns out to be a very good example of what happens when the political party elected to protect the public interest deliberately and consciously places itself in a conflict of interest with its desire to run an oil company.

One of the interests will lose.

- srbp -