Center for Environment, Commerce & Energy
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Dr. George W. Sloan (Doc Sloan) is the Center's Chairman for Special Projects.
Henry Kissinger, Dr. George W. 'Doc' Sloan, Former French President Valery Giscard d'Estaing
Dr. Sloan has initiated projects for the Center that have ranged from steel plant pollution remediation to helicopter tours. His expertise has been a great asset to the Center over the past 15 years. The Special Projects he brings to the Center range from local projects to international programs.
Dr. Sloan's background ranges from advising presidents, governors, mayors and corporate America to civic and environmental groups. "Doc," as he is called, is the power behind numerous projects, but he is not an attention seeker. He promotes equity in energy projects and respects the balance between job creation and environmental protection.
One particular project included arranging pollution remediation services for Avesta Sheffield steel plant just outside of Baltimore, Maryland. The remediation was coupled with a proposed shipbreaking project that was to have included 'Welfare-To-Work' employees. Doc also arranged for negotiations with the Steelworkers Union on the project(s). Unfortunately, the steel plant closed without notice. The photo below shows a tour of the plant for youth that Doc arranged.
Dr. Sloan is currently formulating methodologies to adequately monitor hydraulic fracturing sites, nuclear power plant sites and pipelines.
Doc Sloan Works Water Resources in Africa
Dr. Sloan started a fresh drinking water campaign in Senegal more than 20 years ago that has led to the location and construction of 158 wells in Africa. Doc worked to elevate the capabilities to include state-of-the-art, real time water quality monitoring with passive filtering techniques that can be utilized without the need for large power requirements, complicated maintenance or technical skills that are frequently not available in locations where the capability is needed most.
Dr. Sloan Inspects Fresh Water Well in Senegal
Dr. Sloan works with many organizations to help fund these programs. There are numerous studies on the topic, but it is generally accepted worldwide that the provision of clean, fresh drinking water to the general population could have profound and lasting benefits of good health by virtue of the significant reduction in the transmission of infectious disease.
Doc Sloan and his son Dr. Erik Sloan inspect fishing fleet in Africa as part of a Sustainable Resource Revenue opportunity for local communties
Dr. Sloan can provide further information about the programs and donations can be made directly to the Center for these critical efforts at DocSloan@cfece.org or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org, or by phone at the main office where Mr. Hal Dreyer will assist at 443-569-5102.
Shenango Inc Coke Plant Upsetting Community Over Emissions
The Allegheny County Pennsylvania Health Department monitors emissions near the Shenango Inc coke plant and has levied more than 150 citations for violations at the plant this year, including about 40 since August. DTE Energy, the Detroit-based company that owns the plant, is appealing 114 violations and $114,000 in fines it received through July.
Dr. George Sloan, right, Chairman of Center Special Projects, intends to assist the community groups in monitoring and mitigating the emissions from the plant.
Local groups want to discuss the reasons the violations occurred, whether the problem will be fixed, why the company appealed its fine and what it plans to do to improve the region's air quality. DTE, which bought the Shenango plant in 2008, has regularly participated in meetings of the Neville Island Community Advisory Panel. The health department is working with company officials on an agreement to create control measures to reduce harmful emissions when production increases.
Emissions are released when hot coke -- a fuel used in steelmaking that is produced by baking coal -- is moved from an oven to a quenching station. Shenango has 56 ovens inside its battery. Smoke from the plant can contain particulates and pollutants that can cause cancer and respiratory problems, according to the health department. (Pittsburgh Trib Live, 12/15/2011)
EPA Can't Find Partner For Fracking Study
The Environmental Protection Agency cant find a partner to help perform a study of shale drilling and drinking water in Pennsylvania, a year after it said it would take such action. The result is that federal scientists may not be able to do before-and-after testing of shale gas operations in Washington County and other locations. The agency still is looking for companies to give them access for the study, due in 2014.
Dr. Sloan would like to facilitate before-and-after tests in examing whether fracking is contaminating drinking water.
Agency officials said in June 2011 they were going to test through the full life cycle of wells at a Range Resources Corp. site in Washington County. The agency has yet to finalize a deal with the company that was going to give it access. Lawyers from the agency and the drilling company in question are negotiating and still could reach an agreement, though the agency is looking elsewhere.
The work was among 21 research projects Congress ordered in an effort to assess the impacts of the countrys natural gas boom on drinking-water supplies. Despite the setback the other projects are on course and Paulson believes they will represent a significant scientific advancement when the agencys final report is finished. (Trib Live News, 11/9/2012)
Encasing Nuclear Waste In Glass
The Center has an extensive history of working in the nuclear power sector. Dr. Sloan is examining the feasibility of facilitating glass encapsulation as one solution to our nuclear waste problem.
The March 2011 Fuckushima Daiichi nuclear power plant accident in Japan gave Kurion, Inc founder John Raymont the idea of using his company's waste-treatment technology to build an ad hoc system to filter radiation from contaminated water and recycle it to cool the power station's reactors. Within months, the Irvine, Calif., company's system was the backbone of a successful effort to stabilize the crippled plant. "Without Kurion's system," said Dr. Shunichi Suzuki, an executive at plant owner Tokyo Electric Power Company, "we would really be in trouble."
Fukushima Daiichi Before
Now, Kurion is hoping to build on its Japanese success by getting a piece of one of the biggest and most difficult nuclear waste problems facing the U.S.: mopping up the radioactive waste at the Hanford Site in southeastern Washington state, where nuclear weapons were made decades ago. Last month, Kurion took a step toward that goal, opening a testing facility at the site. Earlier this year, the company signed a contract with the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, a Department of Energy facility, an important part of getting its technology approved for government work.
The cleanup at Hanford remains a formidable challenge. Roughly 56 million gallons of radioactive and chemical sludge sit in underground tanks at the site, where the government produced plutonium for the first nuclear bomb, as well as other weapons during World War II and the Cold War. Some of those tanks have leaked, raising concerns that radioactive waste could threaten the nearby Columbia River.
Fukushima Daiichi After
The Department of Energy has slowed the pace of construction on key parts of a $12.2 billion waste treatment plant being built by Bechtel National Inc., a unit of Bechtel Group, because of questions about their safety and design, raising concerns of a delay in starting a cleanup that is expected to last about four decades.
One of Kurion's products might be able to help because it filters radioactive particles from liquids such as the waste at Hanford.
The company's substance , which it calls "ion specific media," can target specific atoms. The material has another attractive property: It can easily be melted into glass, a process known as "vitrification" that traps the radioactive particles and minimizes potential leaks.
The company pairs the material with a system for straining radioactive waste. Once filled with radioactive waste, electricity is pulsed through the system's canisters, melting the filters into glass for safe storage.
Kurion isn't the only company with technologies designed to treat nuclear waste.
On April 4, 2011, a Kurion team arrived in Japan and described a system that ran contaminated water through a system customized to the situation at the Fukushima Daiichi plant. Kurion's filter would strain out radioactive cesium but let clean water pass through to be redirected to the plant's dangerously hot reactors. (WSJ, 11/5/2012)
South Allegheny School District Needs School Air Filters
The South Allegheny School District, located downwind from U.S. Steel's Clairton Coke Works, has asked the Allegheny County Board of Health to help fund the installation of air filtration systems at two of the district's schools in Liberty. According to documents submitted with the funding request, the district's schoolchildren have asthma rates 300 percent to 400 percent higher than national rates. The facility is located about 20 miles south of Pittsburgh in Clairton, Pennsylvania.
School officials asked the health board to appropriate money from the county's Clean Air Fund, which has a balance of about $10 million that has been collected from companies as a result of air pollution violations. The air filtration systems for 650 students and 200 faculty at the combination high school/middle school and at an Early Childhood Center attended by 80 students in pre-kindergarten through first grade would cost a total of $9.2 million, school district officials said.
In addition to the increased asthma rates among students, recent tests by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency showed that elevated concentrations of benzene, a known carcinogen, were present in the schools.
Dr. George Sloan intends to assist the South Allegheny School District in monitoring emissions and installing necessary air filtering systems to protect the health of students.
South Allegheny is located in the county's hot spot for air pollution. The Health Department's air pollution monitor for the Liberty-Clairton area is located on the roof of South Allegheny High School and regularly registers the highest airborne particle readings in the county.
A $1 billion reconstruction and equipment upgrade at U.S. Steel's Clairton Coke Works is under way and is expected to result in significant air pollution reductions, but not until 2013 or 2014. The school district can't wait and has contacted area foundations, including the Heinz Foundation, for help in funding the new air filtration systems.
A similar air filtration system was installed at the district's elementary school. It cost about $10 million and was funded through a bond issue.
The Health Department has indicated that while there is enough money in the Clean Air Fund to finance the filtration systems, the money also is needed for other projects and programs. (Pittsburgh Post Gazette, 12/14/2011
Salvage of Costa Concordia
A Proposal For
Monitoring & Environmental Controls
The Cruise Ship Costa Concordia grounded and breached its hull on 13 January 2012 and is listed at a 65 degree angle to starboard. All compartments below water are flooded. At the time of this proposal, the fuels and lubricants are being removed to lessen the potential impact to the surrounding area.
Although all marine casualties are unfortunate, this particular casualty occurred in a marine sanctuary and in front of a summer resort island Giglio Island, Italy making the removal even more urgent and challenging.
Global Monitoring, LLC brings two of its suite of technology capabilities to the project via Monitor Instruments Company, LLC www.monitorinstruments.com and Gunderboom, Inc.
Monitor Instruments designs and manufactures a variety of highly specialized instrumentation systems and, for this project, the Sea Monitor is proposed.
The Sea Monitor is a Cycloidal Mass Spectrometer that provides real-time hydrocarbon identification in and under the water.
In the Costa Concordia salvage project, the important uses of the Sea Monitor are:
o The ability to provide constant and real-time analysis and data reporting/logging of the waters surrounding the casualty providing immediate indications of even the slightest level of pollutants that may escape from the hull.
o In conjunction with an ROV, the unit can be used to "explore" submerged areas to check for harmful and/or toxic substances prior to, as an example, engaging divers to go into confined spaces.
o From a Health & Safety standpoint, the unit can be used in the proximity of workers to confirm that the surrounding waters are free of any harmful substances and provide a log of that information.
o Having the Sea Monitor on the project means that there will always be a Mass Spectrometer on site. This is a unique situation and has only become a viable option with the advent of the Cycloidal Mass Spec, which is highly portable. Having this unit on site will allow the technicians to run any questionable or unknown liquid substance through it to make an identification - Real-time and immediate.
Detailed information regarding the Sea Monitor can be found in Exhibit A attached herewith.
Gunderboom provides Engineered Aquatic Filter Barriers (AFB) for a number of differing applications. Common to most applications are two key aspects of the systems. The AFB is typically a very robust, floating boom system that has a vertical curtain that extends to the sea floor and seals at that point.. The AFBs are design so that water can pass through them, but hydrocarbons, sediments, debris and, if applicable, bacteria are contained or excluded from passing.
Gunderboom systems have been used on many projects that present similar challenges as may be seen with the Costa Concordia salvage effort. Most notably, but not most recently, was the Exxon Valdez disaster where over 5 miles of Gunderboom systems were deployed. The majority of these full water depth curtains were placed at the mouth of bays that have fish hatcheries at the head. These systems blocked, or filtered, neutrally buoyant crude and allowed the hatcheries to continue circulating water.
For the Costa Concordia project, Gunderboom proposes to design and fabricate a full water depth AFB that completely surrounds the causality. What this will do is:
o Provide a complete physical barrier from the waters surface to the sea floor such that nothing can get in or out. Alternatively, the boom system can be installed with the curtain "reefed" up and only dropped if there is an "event".
o This will be accomplished with curtain system that will still allow water to pass so the area inside does not become stagnant.
o The AFB design proposed will have a 600mm dia. floatation hood, be capable of operating in up to 2 meter seas and 3 knots of current
o This system can be utilized as a platform of sorts by providing an attachment point for sorbent materials, instrumentation, hazard lighting and so on.
o The full water depth AFB provides a solid line of environmental defense during a challenging refloating effort that will most likely require dewatering of compartments containing various debris and a matrix of whatever was in the ship originally
The utilization of Gunderboom technologies also allows the system to be designed in a manner that will attenuate harmful noise from machinery or overpressures from blasting that may be transmitted into the ocean. Equipment and activities that generate 80 dB above water, as an example, will create a sound level that is 62 dB higher than that underwater, or 142 dB.
The system can also be designed to filter out harmful bacteria and pathogens as well. These technology can be applied either at the system surrounding the casualty or it can bedeployed as a stand alone system surrounding beaches or intakes special areas that may need a higher level of protective systems as a second line of defense.
We recommend that at least two units and associated spare parts be on the project full time.
One consultant is required for each operating unit. However, if one unit is stationery, as an example, the moving unit on an ROV or being towed can be tended to by one consultant and that same consultant can occasionally check on the stationery one.
The SEA MONITOR USAGE rate can be discounted by 20% for a monthly rate and 40% for anything over 4 months.
On a preliminary basis, we have outlined an AFB that is 1,000 meters in length that will surround the casualty with a full water depth curtain. This AFB would stand approximately 16 meters off the hull, but can be adjusted or moved as necessary.
Design assumption provides for 18.5 meter water depth on average. Shallower on shore side of casualty, deeper on sea side.
The boom system is manufactured in 30 meter sections and has anchoring attachment points every 15 meters, inside and out.
The system is contemplated as having several entry points where the boom system can be separated for ingress and egress of marine equipment and/or a section of the floatation can be arranged such that is submerges to accomplish the same thing.
The anchoring system is typically a specially designed concrete anchor with poly line and chain mooring rigging to hold it in place and allow for adjustments over time.
The design, fabrication, delivery and installation of these systems is typically undertaken in Phases or in progressive Tasks ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------