New Zealand Oil Spill Cleanup Near End
Salvage crews believe they have finally retrieved almost all of the oil from the container ship spill in New Zealand last month, the country's worst maritime pollution disaster. After a Liberian-flagged ship carrying 1,700 tons of oil crashed into a reef on October 5, over 350 tons of oil spilled in the North Island's Bay of Plenty, devastating tourism and killing about 1,300 birds.
New Zealand's Environmental Minister Nick Smith discusses October's events:
“While getting the bulk of the oil off the Rena is a significant milestone, our job isn't done yet,” according to Maritime New Zealand (MNZ) on-site commander Mick Courtnell. Authorities expect to clear the remnants of the oil and unload about 1,280 containers from the vessel this week with local beaches soon to reopen.
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With about 60 tons of oil remaining in one of the tanks, there is still a possibility more oil will show up on the beaches, but not to the extent most were worried about.
"Our oil spill response team has been doing painstaking work over the past few weeks, cleaning and re-cleaning, all the while being prepared for another big spill at any moment," Courtnell told the NZ Herald.
Today, over 70 people are working in the wildlife center, handling over 400 live birds affected by the spill. Over 900 tons of oil waste has been collected under a shoreline clean-up team of 300 people.
Hydrostor receives $4m funding for A-CAES facility in Canada
Hydrostor has received $4m funding to develop a 300-500MW Advanced Compressed Air Energy Storage (A-CAES) facility in Canada.
The funding will be used to complete essential engineering and planning, and enable Hydrostor to plan construction.
The project will be modeled on Hydrostor’s commercially operating Goderich storage facility, providing up to 12 hours of energy storage.
Hydrostor’s A-CAES system supports Canada’s green economic transition by designing, building, and operating emissions-free energy storage facilities, and employing people, suppliers, and technologies from the oil and gas sector.
The Honorable Seamus O’Regan, Jr. Minister of Natural Resources, said: “Investing in clean technology will lower emissions and increase our competitiveness. This is how we get to net zero by 2050.”
A-CAES has the potential to lower greenhouse gas emissions by enabling the transition to a cleaner and more flexible electricity grid. Specifically, the low-impact and cost-effective technology will reduce the use of fossil fuels and will provide reliable and bankable energy storage solutions for utilities and regulators, while integrating renewable energy for sustainable growth.
Curtis VanWalleghem, Hydrostor’s Chief Executive Officer, said: “We are grateful for the federal government’s support of our long duration energy storage solution that is critical to enabling the clean energy transition. This made-in-Canada solution, with the support of NRCan and Sustainable Development Technology Canada, is ready to be widely deployed within Canada and globally to lower electricity rates and decarbonize the electricity sector."
The Rosamond A-CAES 500MW Project is under advanced development and targeting a 2024 launch. It is designed to turn California’s growing solar and wind resources into on-demand peak capacity while allowing for closure of fossil fuel generating stations.
Hydrostor closed US$37 million (C$49 million) in growth financing in September 2019.