ENGINEER EXPECTS MF INQUIRY to CONFIRM ALLEGATIONS of FALSIFICATION, DECEIT

Guest Post by the “Anonymous Engineer”
EDITOR’S NOTE: The author of today’s article is the
whistleblower, dubbed the “Anonymous Engineer”, who disclosed – on
this Blog – falsification of the estimates for the Muskrat Falls project in January, 2017. His disclosures helped bolster the case for the Government’s call of the Commission of Inquiry under Judge Richard LeBlanc.

The Muskrat Falls Project – Nalcor’s DNA (Deceit, Deception, Falsification)

Background
The Muskrat Falls Inquiry is over. We are awaiting the Provincial Government’s release of the report
by Judge Richard LeBlanc. What the evidence at the Inquiry has revealed,
through 6 million documents, 135 witnesses, is an intriguing sequence of
deceit, deception and falsification, which has essentially become the
DNA of Nalcor. Almost every aspect of the project was falsified, information withheld,
writings edited to dilute the impact, and no one takes ownership,
accountability or responsibility for anything.



The segments where the deception and deceit occurred permeates
the entire life of the project from initial justification through to
construction, and all the steps in between, namely, project justification, estimating
and estimate approval, federal loan guarantee, allocation of budgets to work
packages, awarding of contracts, and cost forecasting during construction. Each
of these segments were thoroughly, meticulously and deliberately falsified,
misleading the recipients into making the wrong decisions. The recipients were
the highest level and may have included the Premier’s Office,
Ministry of Natural Resources, Ministry of Finance, various other Deputy
Ministers, the Independent Engineer and the Nalcor Board of Directors, and
finally, the Government of Canada.


Such deception is unprecedented in Canada, where the entire governing body of a province was so completely misled.  This is a breach of trust and integrity
without precedence.
Each of the impacted segments will be analysed in turn.


Related to this Post:

Muskrat Cost Estimates: A Complete Falsification, says Engineer
Muskrat: Allegations of Phony Cost Estimates
Project Justification
In order to create a need for the project the future demand
for power was overstated. There was major deviation from established practises
used in other utilities within Canada and USA. 


Conservation Demand Management (CDM) was not used – which, in addition to the failure to account for a declining populations and price elasticity, allowed the demand for power to be overstated. 

There was no quality control in the Load Forecasting process


The operating costs increased from $34 million per year to
$109 million per year. 


It is not conclusively determined who took responsibility for
this process.

Estimate Preparation and Approval
The estimate for the project at $ 6.2 billion (plus financing costs) was
completely wrong. Every aspect of the project was wrong. It was so blatantly
wrong, that any senior person with experience in Estimating and Project
Management could identify  them.


The unit prices used did not represent the harsh conditions of
the sub arctic climate of Central Labrador. The labour productivity was far too
low.  The hours used for concrete
placement – the heart of the project, were wrong by a factor of at least two.


The contingencies used were nonsensically too low. The
contingencies were established at P50, which is a fatal error. According to
Westney Consulting, the Risk Consultants on the Project, Nalcor should have
used P85 or P90, which would have raised the contingency level to about $1
billion, instead of the artificially low $368 million which was used.


Validation Estimating, a consultant hired specifically to
review the estimate, was very strongly critical of the estimate.  Validation estimating said the contingencies
made no sense at all. Their contract was terminated for being critical of the
estimate.


Westney Consulting was also tasked with conducting a Risk
Review of the Construction Schedule. They concluded that the project had a 3%
chance of successful completion at best. If it materialized, it could result in
a 21 month delay. In hindsight it did materialize. The project is delayed by
over two years.


Nalcor undertook to make estimate adjustments for labour
productivity, which they did not do. Nalcor also tried to hide Validation
Estimates criticisms and Westney’s schedule review. They were both made public
by the Grant Thornton Report Phase 1.


If the estimate was done with correct rates for concrete
placement, the risk evaluated at P85, and a proper construction schedule,
the cost would have exceeded $ 10 billion.  Stan Marshall, CEO of Nalcor, is on record
saying the project cost of $6.2 billion was “way, way too low. $ 10 billion is
about the right number”.


At a price tag of $10 billion, there would not have been a
project.
Therefore, it was not in Nalcor’s interest to get the estimate
right.  Such is the degree of
falsification.


The critically low estimate was approved at $6.2 billion (Excluding
Financing). The process of estimate approval and accompanying signatures,
remains unclear.


The road to ruin and catastrophe was wide open. Date December
2012.


Allocation of Budgets
The budget of $6.2 billion was now being allocated to the
various work packages on which the project would be managed. As the estimate
was low balled, the budgets assigned to the work packages were also critically
low.


Between January 2013 and April 2013, bids were received on
some large work packages. The corresponding approved budgets were exceeded by a
wide margin. By April 2013, the project contingency was exhausted. Nalcor
Project Management Team was fully aware of this.
The contingency was depleted before major work was even
started, with billions of dollars of work yet to be done. The contingency was
not reassessed, the project cost was not reforecast.  This is contrary to all principles of Project
Management.


Paul Harrington , Project Director, had stated to Grant
Thornton, that it was not his responsibility to revise the forecast. If not the Project Director, then whose
responsibility was it? 


No one outside of the Nalcor Project Management Team was
informed of this.


It is a requirement within Nalcor that there has to be
sufficient budget for a contract package to be awarded. That is the budget must
exceed the value of the bid. As the budgets for the packages were critically
short, Nalcor circumvented the problem through “ creative accounting” –  transferring budgets from work from work
packages not yet awarded. This practice continued until all the wells ran dry.
There was no choice, but to increase the forecast.


Cost Forecast During Construction
The bids received far exceeded the budgets, causing major cost
overruns. The forecasts were gradually increased in small increments at a time.
In August 2013, the forecast was increased to $6.99 billion, then to
$7.65 billion in September 2015. The internally available forecasts were higher.
These were never published.


The construction schedule, adversely impacted by the poor
performance of Astaldi, was never updated. The whole year of 2014 was lost as
Astaldi was not familiar with the work.  A significant portion of 2015 was lost as
Astaldi was learning the work. The construction schedule was the same as that
developed in December 2012, despite losing a year and a half of construction. The
construction schedule was essentially meaningless, and had not been updated in
three years.  Nalcor did not want to show
a multi year construction delay. Costs associated with construction delays were
never included in the cost forecasts. 
Such was the degree of deception.


In December 2015, the Provincial Government changed and
falsification of costs and schedules was no longer possible.


In January of 2016 Premier Ball engaged EY to review the work
done by Nalcor. They concluded that the Nalcor forecast of $ 7.65billion was
unreasonable, and developed their own. The EY forecast was $ 10.1 billion,
developed in May of 2017, and later increased to $ 11.7 billion, which included
the Astaldi claim. The present forecast stands at $ 12.7billion.
The Nalcor forecast of $7.65 billion, was deliberately wrong,
as there were no changes in scope between September 2015, when Nalcor made it’s
forecast and the $10.1 billion forecast made by EY in May 2016.


Nalcor strongly resisted the engagement of EY and became as
difficult as possible, not cooperating , not providing information, delaying
the release of data and reports as revealed during the Inquiry.


Nalcor falsified the costs and schedules during the entire
period of construction, as confirmed during the Inquiry. This is deceit
unparalleled.


Federal Loan Guarantee
The
negotiations with the Federal Government were in progress during 2013.
When the Federal Loan Guarantee was finally secured in
November 2013, the project cost had been updated to $6.5 billion, while the
Nalcor Project Management Team had an internal forecast of $7 billion. No one
outside of the Nalcor Project Management Team was made aware of the increased
forecast. 


All parties namely,  the
Provincial Government, Federal Government, the Independent Engineer, and the
Nalcor Board of directors claim did not know that at the time of the loan
guarantee, the forecast had already exceeded the stated amount of $6.5 billion. Only
Premier Dunderdale was ambivalent whether she was told.
           
Observation
The Inquiry made available a torrent of evidence that
supported numerous allegations of deceit, deception and falsification.
It is obvious from the evidence that this practice was not a mistake made by a
junior employee. Instead, it is a consequence of strategic business decisions
made at the highest levels at Nalcor.  Conclusion
is that the relentless drive to build Muskrat Falls was driven by the
opportunity for personal gain.


The Nalcor Project Management Team profited enormously by the
project going ahead. If there were 10 persons earning $ 250,000 per year on
average, for say 10 years, that is $ 25 million in earnings, which they
otherwise might not have had.


This is a large amount of money, an incentive strong enough to
keep the project going at all costs. 


Most likely, no one in the Project Management Team ever
expected a Public Inquiry, at the level of detail we have seen.


Recommendation
It will be in the public interest, once Justice LeBlanc’s
report is issued, if the Report is reviewed by the by the Royal Newfoundland
Constabulary and the Director of Public Prosecutions.  If the decisions were calculated Executive
Management decisions, those who perpetrated this catastrophe must be held
accountable and charges laid as appropriate. The Province having been brought to
the doorstep of bankruptcy, no other outcome is appropriate.

THE PROOF MUSKRAT FALLS IS NOVA SCOTIA’S PROJECT

The substance of Hydro’s mission is to satisfy the contracts with Emera to get large amounts of power flowing into Nova Scotia for the betterment of that province and its ratepayers.  The Island could easily live without the Muskrat Fals project and in fact, other than for the onerous Emera contracts, NL ratepayers would be best off if it was abandoned and left to rust.

FIRST YEAR OF OFFICIAL ENERGY DELIVERY NOT QUITE WHAT EMERA BARGAINED FOR

PlanetNL52: Happy Anniversary Emera on 1 Year of Official Energy Delivery Not Quite What Emera Bargained For Despite all the bad news related to Labrador Island...

GROUP SEEKS PUBLIC SUPPORT FOR CABOT MARTIN RESEARCH AWARD

Cabot Martin’s sudden passing, in September, has stirred his friends, colleagues, and others familiar with his work, to honor him and encourage continued work in applied research and public policy development.

85 COMMENTS

  1. I am stunned that at this point in the debacle that even you Independent Engineer, can't admit that the Nalcor management was directed to maintain secrecy by the emperor that wanted a legacy…at ANY cost.

    " Conclusion is that the relentless drive to build Muskrat Falls was driven by the opportunity for personal gain." Personal gain was a secondary byproduct of a system undermined by the Premier.

    Nalcor was directed to use the treasury to build a legacy… at any cost!

    Rather than a shining monument on the hill NL got a turd that will cripple the province for decades.

    And still even the author finds scapegoats without fingering the Emperor. Sad!

  2. Excellent Post. I would also add that the schedule being communicated to the Public was knowingly <P10. No chance of making it. A P50 schedule would have added hundreds of millions in AFUDC.

    By bowing out, Ball has effectively washed his hands of the next decision. Should the AG commence fraud investigations on the then senior leadership of Nalcor.

    This debacle will be the subject of future law books.

  3. A good overview by the whistleblower, to remind us of the travesty details on the eve of the release of the Leblanc inquiry. The whistleblower gives us his foresight, now hindsight, of what he knew. The Inquiry Report will give us proof positive of his allegations. And as he ask, will the findings be passed along to the RNC and RCMP to see where charges can be laid. If a report found persons guilty of the improper use of government funds, like a few hundred dollars, charges would be laid. Why should it be any different here? How many lied through their teeth on the stand by claiming they knew nothing? Yes, the management team had a personal interest in making the project proceed, come hell or high water, a good paying job for 10 years or so. And their other reason for making it proceed was to satisfy the ego of "the all mighty". So they could kill two birds with the one stone, and dam the torpedoes, which could include possible bankruptcy. If the government redacts a single word from the Report, as many others have said, then there should be a general strike of the entire province against government. Joe blow.

  4. "Each of these segments were thoroughly, meticulously and deliberately falsified, misleading the recipients into making the wrong decisions. The recipients were the highest level and may have included the Premier’s Office, Ministry of Natural Resources, Ministry of Finance, various other Deputy Ministers, the Independent Engineer and the Nalcor Board of Directors, and finally, the Government of Canada".

    While this post provides a broad outline of the breadth and depth of the deceit, etc., it is blatantly incorrect (at least) to claim that the "highest level" was mislead.

    This Muskrat fiasco began, and continued, with direction from the highest level of government.

    While Nalcor is far from blameless, Muskrat could never have happened without direction from the provincial government and the complicity/enabling approval/resources provided by Ottawa.

    • Amen, Maurice and Bruno. Nalcor was just following directions from government, do it "by hook of by crook" and so it was mostly by crook.
      Nalcor carried out orders as did our Regiment on July 1 1916. I suppose most of the govn orders to Nalcor were verbal, and anything in writing, that could be incriminating, were transient documents that needed destruction, as stated by the shark lawyer Ralph. Some things must be kept secret, and Ralph now wants to censor what he can. Rule of Law you know. Protect the scallywags,the puppet masters, who are exempt from some laws.
      So, our democracy is flawed, not equal justice. It's as crocked as it is straight, is it not?
      Winston Adams

  5. This post by the Anonymous Engineer cites, what seems to me, to be scandalous and corrupt behaviour by many engineers, not just a few. I have expressed this opinion before on this blog. PENG2, a geotechnical civil engineer, (if I recall correctly) disputes that there was significant engineering failure on this MFs project, citing management decisions,and many engineers not being practicing engineers. Does he still hold to that opinion? I recently referred him to what has been called the greatest civil engineering boondoggle in Canadian history for comparison, to which he showed little interest, to compare whether this one is now the greatest boondoggle.
    Winston Adams

    • PENG2, your silence makes me speculate that you are engaged with your investment portfolio? A worried man, or wooooman? You never did say?
      I assume you direct trade and not depend on brokers during these panic times, as they are just too busy.
      One reputable economist says it best to ride it out, stay on the sidelines, as markets are now down about 15 % but likely so see a drop of 25 to 30%, so not a time to buy in these dips nor to panic sell. Sound advise I think.
      You never advised if you margin? If so , to that %? If highly margined that is dangerous, keep you awake at night, and distressed in daytime, and not able to comment on UG as to the Anon Engineer's piece.
      Panic sellers are calling brokers saying sell 50% of everything. These investors must be highly margined and risk losing everything.
      Energy stocks are being hard hit, many with high debts. Utilities only down about 5 % so Fortis may not do too bad…..but they have over 30 billion in debt? Not sure, but electricity is an essential commodity more than oil.
      Orsborne is worried and plans to borrow more, at present oil price it could be 600 million lower income.
      But amid all the bad news, lower oil consumption is expected and is good for the planet, do you agree?
      Why does Orsborne not support the Saudi and cut production to boost prices. And Alberta too fearing a 5 billion hit. We need a worldwide cartel for production cuts, do we not? Drive up prices, and makes for more green energy, like wind , and throw in a few Bruno batteries for jurisdictions where it is cost effective, but not here.
      But no one takes my advise, so we will borrow more like in the early 1930s.
      Winston Adams

  6. Trumpie is conspicuous by his lack of tweets this morning. Gone as silent as any demagoguery when he is powerless to do anything about it. Trading on the NY stock market is brought to a grinding hault, 5 minutes into trading as the Dow Jones drops 7 per cent and oil prices plummet. The result of Trumpie and his trade and tariff wars. The Russians, Chinese and OPEC combine to cause Cacos on the world markets. The C virus is just an excuse. Joe blow.

  7. If no criminal investigation proceeds, then we are clearly living in a Banana Republic. The very thought of any redactions by Government in LeBlanc's report deserves, in itself , an investigation and confirms there is a conspiracy to protect the guilty.
    Everyone has a pretty good idea who the guilty are. The monumental ego of the "exalted one" who put those in place to "get 'er done at all costs" to ensure Quebec would see how powerful he was, has brought this province to it's knees and must not be without consequences.
    Lay charges on one person involved and watch what happens as it makes it's way up the proverbial ladder.
    How in the name of Hell could something like this be allowed to happen and still no one being held accountable?

    Our debt as a result of MF, the continuing overspending of the Provincial Government, and now the falling oil prices, will be the final nail in our coffin.

    How's that for a legacy ("we got it b'ys") Williams?

  8. So… the truth is known and will soon be published. Now, what will "we the people" do about this corrupt and tragic excremental mire that "The Infamous Mr. Williams" et al, has smeared all over our babies (and adults) for the next 57 TO 100 YEARS??

    We will just continue "take it" like weak and stupid little masochists?

    Will "we" just head right on up to Costco and PetSmart and dump (even) MORE of our money at his sacred feet. Why not just wash and kiss his feet too while we (you) are at it?

    Is THIS our future. Is THIS our legacy?

    It is time, (high time indeed) that the citizens of NL unite.

    Either we unite and seek justice or we die pitifully, having lived a (mostly) meaningless life, and having let one (several) of the world's most pathetic losers walk right over the rights and needs of our own children…. for many… many… many decades to come.

    The choice is truly OURS.

    What will YOU choose to do?

  9. Is the average Joe allowed to write what he thinks…no matter how ludicrous it might be? Why not? May be as much value as what the experts tell us. So let me see where are we. Putin and the Criwn Prunce have conspired to bring oil prices to an all (modern) time low. Maybe kimmy and Ch have combined to bring on the C-virus. It was man made they reported. South Korea has the next number of cases to China. What was the Chineese lady doing at Trump Retreat a few months ago. No virus or spying was found on her phone. Maybe she was planting a human virus. Only a few thousand people to date have been tested in the US. They say that as many as 4 high level politicians in the US has come in contact with the virus and have self quartineen. Two have shook the hands of the president and VP in the past few days. With so few tested, and why so close to the top of the US food chain? Result, the stock market has fallen more points than ever before. A world recession is a possibility. If you combine all of this, it sounds like the perfect storm. All brought on indirectly by the Man Himself. They played him like a squeeze box, and have beat him like a drum. He is a broken man. Self destruction. If you lie down with mangy dogs, don't be surprised if you wake up with the flees. Joe blow, way out on his limb again.

  10. AJ, Saudi is now into an all out war with the USA, economically…..much of the world infected with oil on the brain, much more than infected with coronovirus.
    Here the song goes it was cod liver oil on the brain, but we know cod liver oil is an important Vitamin D source for those in the land of fog and little sunshine. The black oil is much more dangerous. Saudi Arabia will now pump 12.2 mb/d, up from 10. Now Iraq will join them, and Russia too, and others will join the war. The aim is too cripple the largest producer in the would, the US of A, now producing about 12 million per day, much from fracking. Those USA producers have much debt and this can cripple many of them. Nfld and Alberta are caught in the crossfire, needing 65 dollar oil and now heading towards 20 dollar.
    Airlines and cruise and hotels are taking a big hit on the little virus, and poor Trumpie, a germophile, shaking hands with risky people. Trump may have met his match with this little virus. I tell you, God sometimes works in mischievous ways. Trump threatens fire and brimstone against Iran, and Kim,but his legs grows weak over this little virus.
    Lost revenue for travels industry is projected to be 3 times that of 9/11 event. Despite low prices for oil, consumption will drop by a few million bls per day. Great news for the planet. Greta must be pleased, and me too, but that only a small step for the environment. The Digger not so pleased. Bruno is silent as to the big picture, also PENG2, who may be fully engaged with his investment exposure. Gas prices will be lower, thanks to the Arabs.

    Nfld will borrow more money says Tom.
    What are our chief economists saying? What is our Plan?
    Winston Adams

    • Winston,

      One word says it all?

      "Plan"

      We have none other than borrow more?
      Hopefully for our sakes the bond markets will soon turn off the taps to our treasury.

      Maybe then we will have to "plan"!

    • You are right Winston, but when is trumpie going to call up his best 2 buddies, Putin and the Crown prince, and tell them to knock it off, as he is getting squeezed out of the market. I hear they are not answering their phones. They owe him big time trumpie thinks. The crown prince was the first he called after his inauguration, and invited him to the WH, and agreed he did not murder his news reporter. After his best buddy helped him get elected, he denied it as Putin told him to do, and to blame Ukraine. Where have all my best buddies gone…they owe me..he proclaims…and they respond ..who's. buddies. Meanwhile his trade and tariffs competitors of China say there is more than one way to win wars. How about a little scare virus to shut down your economy? Does GOD work in mysterious ways or is it your trade competitors, ask Joe blow.

  11. Osborne intends to keep borrowing, not to rein in his government's out-of-control spending, but to keep racking up the government credit card…

    "Osborne said if the drop in prices continues, the province will have no choice but to borrow more, adding to it's deficit and debt."

    https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/newfoundland-labrador/oil-price-plunge-newfoundland-labrador-1.5491170

    The intent of Osborne and that crowd of dimwits and culprits in the HofA is to keep borrowing until the bondsmen cut them off, and then just let the province go insolvent or the feds step in to salvage the tattered remnants of the provincial finances.

    So any talk form these buggers about getting their financial house in order is just so many steaming pies of warm, fetid bullshit.

    So where will that leave Dwight Ball's fantasy of "rate mitigation"?

  12. In light of the LeBlanc Report, the monstrosity NALCOR will go down in NL history as forever associated with ignominious malfeasance and scandal… in the same vein as the NL constituency allowance scandal and Mount Cashel.

    Nalcor as a corporate entity MUST be dismantled and dissolved.. such an horrendous betrayal of the public trust makes it impossible for it to continue on as a Crown corporation of the provincial government.

  13. I interesting that Nalcor ruled out higher than 10% wind penetration was possible despite evidence to the contrary.

    "Nalcor’s current CEO, Stan Marshall, testified that these other generation options (Island hydro)would likely have enabled additional wind to be economically added to the Isolated Island Option. It was unreasonable to limit the Isolated Island Option to 10% wind penetration forever since 10% was unlikely to be the long-term limit."

    A consideration of batteries to smooth out intermittent wind (from the nearshore) would have pushed that figure to 50% or higher.

    Weak excuses were found for all the alternatives to MF, offshore gas, LNG, wind/sun/batteries, small hydro, Conservation and Demand Management (CDM), all to be dismissed in favour of the Dog On The Churchill!

  14. "Today, we face a worst-case scenario of low fuel prices, low load, large cost overruns and major delays. Before the Project was sanctioned, the present scenario was not even imagined as a possibility, but it might well have been if the analytical process had been robust."

    Such a polite way of saying the fix was in for Muskrat Falls! Duhhh, Now who done it I wonder???

  15. We must not become complacent. It took a lot of effort to get the Government of the day to launch this Inquiry. Now that the final report is released to the public, a new phase begins. Investigation by the Police and the Department of Justice with the possibility of civil or criminal responsibility.

    The Police and Judicial investigations cannot be a public relations exercise in pacification. It must go after real culprits. This did not happen by chance. If not we will be out there in front of the Nalcor office beating our pots and pans – very, very hard to ignore for any politician.

    James Pearce

  16. 30 minutes reading part of the Summary, Leblanc seems pretty good in his descriptions.
    First thing comes otmind is :How can PENG2 now say MFs is nota major engineering failure?
    Second: that it also seems to implicate Nfld Govn, politicians and beaucrats as accomplices, so not just Nalcor
    Third : that MHI was part of the muck in this whole affair.
    Fourth : that many various alternatives for the Isolated Option were screen out or now considered, deliberately.
    Fifth; That Leblanc lacks insight into the LOW cost of Bruno Batteries LOLs, that could have pushed out wind to 50% …..that would be 900MW needing 1800 MW at 50% capacity, the excess stored in Bruno batteries……at what cost? Arithmetic please?
    Sixth……didn't yet see customer Energy Efficiency mentioned at all , yet, but such a big component in Nova Scotia and most jurisdictions, and much touted by Synapse what they do elsewhere. Intentional or little understood by Lablanc?
    Winston Adams

  17. I just read through the main findings of Justice LeBlanc's report for the Muskrat Falls Inquiry.

    Three main words jump out at you.

    Edmund Martin
    NALCOR
    Misled

    These 3 words are repeated numerous times throughout the report.

    There is also another category I would call:

    "Dishonourable Mention"

    Paul Harrington
    Gilbert Bennett
    Jason Keane
    Charles Bown
    Donna Brewer
    Paul Myrden
    Paul Morris

    As well as a complete fail by our political masters to at least inform themselves on mega projects, and to provide a thorough oversight of this public expenditure of funds up to and including sanction of the project.

  18. "Edmund Martin, Gilbert Bennett and the PMT frequently took unprincipled steps to help secure Project sanction. They concealed information that would undermine the business case reported to the public, to GNL and to Nalcor’s board of directors. The PMT did its best to narrow consultants’ terms of reference to forestall independent review and it tried to influence the editing of reports to make conclusions appear more favourable to the Project. Many times, these decisions were made by the same individuals, Paul Harrington and Jason Kean, who had also determined the final inputs into the tactical and strategic risk analysis."

    So far so good! Who gave them license to flaunt the public purse?

  19. I find the Volume 1V- Looking Forward, Page 85, and on, some interesting reading. Almost a Lessons Learned approach. We must all look forward, as to how we can right the ship. The Storm is past. The culprits and Engineers must face their peers, with conscience.

  20. Page 40 is on the LIL reliability, or how vulnerable to adverse weather. Adverse weather is very important.But what about space weather? Like Trump with Space Force?
    Seriously Space weather> GICs I have mentioned and now it is in Nalcors list of 40 risks to the LIL. GICs had impacts on the Atlantic cables even in the 1860s, and can burn up big power transforemrs, and triggered the big USA NE power failure in 1989.
    What of GE software bugs and system integration? What of the synchronous condensers part as to power reliability?
    Much on this now a problem for delays, and no evidence put to Leblanc, so what could he say in his 1 page on reliability? Who could have dived into that? Engineer Kate, who was awarded a judges job, and left?

    And is there mention at all of the North Spur risk? Risk to the project assets and to life and limb downstream?
    Winston Adams

  21. Page 55 LeBlanc says when Ball came to power the project was gone to far to halt. Really? Due to the FLG and other contracts.
    The biggest boondoggle in Canadian history , before MFs, was to built a rail line and port for western farmers to Hudson Bay. A political project. The Port chosen was Port Nelson, Manitoba. 4 years and half built when it was halted for years. Then a decision to proceed, but was Port Nelson a good site, or a boondoggle site? What did they do? They brought an expert from England who confirmed what was generally well known, faulty engineering analysis for the site, so cancel it and relocate to Port Churchill, Port Nelson works abandoned. His report was accepted and it got done, that part on time and on budget.
    What did we do? Bring in Stan Marshall. What if real experts assessed the wisdom to halt and negotiate the complex legalities that added another 7 or 8 billion , and even now no power and questionable reliability.
    Was it really to late to halt it . Leblanc says too late at the FLG close, and then not much spent.
    Too late to halt? They halted Port Nelson, half way finished.
    PENG2 little interested in that, as he agrees with Leblanc and Ball, and Stan.
    Winston Adams

    • WA @ 17:31:

      Alot to digest, but not much different than I expected and have said would likely be said.

      The MF project was driven by politics and ego – though I am interested in if you (or others) changed your opinion on the broadness as LeBlanc said a couple times the ToR was plenty broad and went area that the ToR didn't specifically direct him into.

      I wouldn't expect much from a RNC/RCMP review (just political pandering by DB) – it was government policy, end of story there is suspect.

      As for the markets etc – I don't borrow, and I'm not in much trouble.

      PENG2

    • We finally agree on something PENGzero. The police review is just pandering by Ball. It will amount to nothing and is a weak attempt to absolve themselves of incompetence. In the meantime the Ball government will continue to hide the guilty from justice.

  22. Well folks we have it from the horses mouth.

    According to Stan Marshall as per NTV News, nobody at NALCOR will lose their jobs as a result of this report.

    I literally don't know what else to say other than?

    Amazing!

    • VOCM Article…
      Marshall has worked with Gilbert Bennett for four years and says he trusts him fully and has complete confidence in him.

      Wow. Stan obviously do not view the findings of the inquiry the same way everyone else does. That don't show too well on Stan.

  23. I have read Volume 1 of Justice LeBlanc's report. It is a document that I could not stop reading. Simply "un put downable". Never in all my years in Project Management, have I read such thoroughly planned out strategy for disseminating false information. Nalcor had a very clear game plan to get the project approved, and set about it with impeccable efficiency. The GNL staff, clueless and incompetent, were just a joke. Dona Brewer, Paul Myrden, Charles Bown we lethally ineffective and incompetent.

    The report from pages 45 to 60 has 76 "infractions" fair to say. While incompetence is not a crime, deliberately disseminating false information may be seen as one. In several places in Volume 1, it says the estimate was " Knowingly Understated". This got us into where we are today, billions of dollars in debt, with no hope of debt repayment, except through a Federal Bailout.
    It will be interesting to see how the RCMP and the Department of Public Prosecutions sees all this. Only time will tell.
    Jeremy Hill

  24. This simple rube of a justice minister Parsons is mouthing off about about having the RNC and NL Justice Dpmt investigate, yet he quite possibly provided the defense with grounds for summary dismissal by actually admitting that there could effectively be conflict of interest in such an investigation because he's "pissed off" and his "kids will have to pay" for the fraud. Further, his embarrassingly short-sighted logic for bringing in the RNC is because "most Nalcor decisions were made in St. John's, which falls under RNC jurisdiction."

    In view of similar corporate investigations such as the SNC Lavlin bribery affair, Parsons' ramblings are just a red herring and sound suspiciously like he's setting up the public for dismissal of charges on the basis of no chance of conviction, or some other convenient ruling so as to wash his hands of the mess and let these dodgy fuckers off the hook.

    The RNC and NL Justice Dpt has neither the resources, skills, nor objectivity to investigate a fraud of of this colossal magnitude.

    When SNC Lavlin was involved in the Libyan bribery affair, the RCMP and Public Prosecution Service of Canada was brought in to investigate and determine if charges were warranted.

    Not the Sûreté du Québec or the Ministère de la Justice… the RCMP and the PPSC.

    The RCMP and PPSC have the resources, skills, and objectivity to properly investigate malfeasance willful ignorance on this scale and determine whether charges are warranted.

    The justification for these agencies leading any investigation is because the Government of Canada provide a Federal Loan Guarantee to the province based on information that the LeBlanc Report has determined to be false and deliberately misleading.

    Anything less than involvement by the RCMP and PPSC is further attempt at cover-up and miscarriage of justice regarding the MRF debacle.

    https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/newfoundland-labrador/royal-newfoundland-constabulary-muskrat-falls-1.5493435

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SNC-Lavalin_affair#SNC-Lavalin_bribery_charges

    • Furthermore, it's entirely inappropriate for Stan Marshall to publicly express any personal opinions on the LeBlanc Report.

      Marshall is not a Crown prosecutor versed in the CCC, therefore his public statements regarding possible criminal activity, or lack thereof, as revealed in the LeBlanc Report are both misguided and inappropriate. In other words, he should just stfu and do his job.

      He'll have enough trouble on his hands trying to keep that crowd of skeets and culprits focused on finishing off Deception Dam while they're distracted by the thought of having to lawyer up to fend off possible criminal charges.

    • 12:25 and 13:15 ——– interesting and informative comments, and agree fully that Marshall's comments are, at a minimum, inappropriate — and more in line with the kind of BS we have heard from Nalcor and GNL since day 1.

  25. "The problem with such a one-sided approach is that the outcome flows from an improper, weak foundation at the expense of a balanced perspective of the overall issues, merits and net benefits associated with such a significant investment in the future of Newfoundland and Labrador," Martin wrote.

    My friends, here we have an example of bullshit, such utter bullshit… the fetid vapors arising from such a concentrated concoction of duplicitous bullshit is truly enough to bring tears to one's eyes.

  26. Ed Martin has spoken.

    Quite obviously he is still living in his own rose coloured world.

    Although at this point you have to expect him to still pump the continual lines of BS he has been accustomed to both during, and after his NALCOR employment.

    Ed Martin actually gave me my chuckle for today when he accused LeBlanc for "attacking" him on the stand while he was testifying!

    He must have watched a different video feed of the Muskrat Falls Inquiry than the rest of us?

    Martin describes himself as a "willing and enthusiastic witness".

    The man is quite the piece of work, arrogance personified!

    His entire response is linked to the article itself.

    Worth the read if you want another great excuse to throw up in your own mouth?

    The man is still in his own self imposed state of denial!

    One positive?

    I'm sure he will be just as "willing and enthusiastic" when he is ever interviewed by the Police?

    Somehow, I think not!

    https://vocm.com/2020/03/11/ed-martin-muskrat-falls-report/

    • Martin gets full marks for chutzpa, bald face lies for lines like:

      "We, as a people, need to stick to the plan. It will work. Look forward, not back – this is our time. Stay the course."

      Where was his forward looking assessment when determining future demand? Unlike most utilities he only looked at past consumption and ignored the changes in future consumption. Nalcor was the only bloody utility in North America to have a growing future demand curve.

      "Our Time" my arse!

    • Let me know if Leblanc calls out engineer Stratton, Mr Forecaster, who bet on continued uptake of baseboard heat, no use of end-use modelling, no CDM etc for forecasting. Even Kate let him off easy.
      Without the rosy forecast, nothing could proceed.
      Winston

    • With the release of the LeBlanc Report I'm not sure if the term "fiasco" is a fitting description anymore… nor is the term "debacle".

      Such terms imply a screw-up by the stupidly naive but possibly innocent.

      The LeBlanc Report indicates that Deception Dam was a calculated, deliberate exercise in malfeasance and corruption, the motivation apparently being self-enrichment of the Nalcor PMT during the lifetime of the project via exorbitant salaries and bonuses.

      In effect, the more these sons of bitches screwed up and missed project deadlines and blew budgets, the longer they could suckle and gorge themselves on the public tit. The province was liable to cover cost over-runs, and those fuckers took full advantage of it.

      So, no… I don't think the term "fiasco" is applicable here… rather, terms such as "scam", "swindle", "plot", "scheme", or "racket" are more appropriate in the context of Deception Dam.

  27. Dunderdale the Dupe From The Boot, says she found it "difficult" to read the report, probably because it had some big words in it. That abject quantity was so far out her depth as premier that she'd make a bunch of toddlers in a wading pool look like an Olympic swim team.

    The combination of Edmund Martin as Nalcor CEO and Kathy Dunderdale as premier has in fact resulted in an existential threat to the long-term viability of NL.

    How many will suffer and die because the health care system will no longer be properly funded due to such an horrendous and far-reaching level of deceit and dereliction of duty by those two individuals? Never mind the lost funding to provincial education and social services.

    Those bastards should be locked up.

  28. " Muskrat Falls was, from the outset a political project, initiated and then relentlessly pursued by a group of politicians for their own reasons. Their leader, Danny Williams, selected Ed Martin to work with him on the Nalcor project, chiefly to build something on the Lower Churchill as Williams’ legacy.

    Martin told LeBlanc that he had one job – to build the project – and that was all of it. But Martin did the job for Williams. Along the way Williams recruited to his circle senior bureaucrats who also actively collaborated in the project for their own reasons. It was this circle that met in April 2010 at The Rooms and decided to plunge ahead with the redefined project now known as Muskrat Falls."

    An alternative view, of which I largely agree (above excerpt copied from https://bondpapers.blogspot.com/2020/03/cleaning-up-mess-of-muskrat-falls-nlpoli.html )

  29. It is amazing that the one-sided narrative presented by Ed Martin and the Nalcor propaganda machine during the sale of the Muskrat project to an innocent public, was allowed to stand with any who opposed it branded as traitors to the province. Now this ridiculous excuse for a person has the unmitigated gall to suggest that the commission of inquiry judgement against him is unfair. Justice has not yet been served for the damage this guy and others have done to this province and its people.

  30. Spotlight should not shine on the Professional Engineering association. Will they launch an disciplinary investigation on those named in the report for actions not becoming an engineer?

    Likely not, as this is a white collar infringement.

  31. I suppose the Misguided Project will be a topic for a while yet. Yesterday was the big day for that.
    Today a bigger event, I think, is seeing Trunpie being nervous over this "foreign" virus, and how the mightiest nation in the world will defeat it. Maybe his Space Force has a secret weapon. Of course our best weapon is our own immune system being fit, and the older folks, like most reading UG, are more vulnerable.
    The biggest news to day, I think, is the number 475 billion. That is the number of tons on average of ice melting at our planet's poles. In the 1990s it was 81 billion tons, so now a 6 fold increase. That from 11 satelite surveys, and absolute proof.
    The climate scientists made various charts of possible outcomes some years ago, like Synapse guessing how many electric cars we might have, low , medium, high uptake say. They had a worse event what they never thought likely, as to the ice at the Poles melting. Today they confirm we are now on track for worst event.
    The boondoggle and the foreign virus are well behind as newsworthy, I suggest. How many wind mills and Bruno batteries do we need to slow the ice melt and flooding? Elon Musk is planning to leave for Mars. By 2100, 400 million people will be exposed to coastal flooding.
    I propose anyone like the Digger that denies such solid science should be locked up as nut cases, because they are dangerous to the survival of our species. Then again, maybe our species is not worthy of survival. If not "lock em up", then force them to argue their case at the Harris case with MUN's best climate scientists?
    475 billion tons a year!
    I used to shovel 3 tons of coal for winter heating in the 60s. My imagination can't capture 460 billion tons,…. how many icebergs disappearing say, each year? And now oil about 30 dollars a barrel, and Trumps is shutting out flights from Europe. Everything going crazy. Stan praising Gilbert Bennett even. I wonder who looked the most nervous, Trump or Stan? Certainly not Teflon Ed Martin.Cool as an iceberg. A rare bird, that Ed. He executed Danny's Plan, which will be worth 100 billion by 2100, ….Ed thinks long term. Maybe he should get jailed for 80 years, garnish his pension and other assets, and return them if he's right.
    Winston Adams

  32. I find it astounding that Valard, an experienced transmission line contractor strung 100's of km of defective wire. They knowingly strung this defective conductor from day one. Stringing should have been suspended on day one (by Valard), not after 300+ km of line strung. Valard shares some of the blame on this one.

  33. Yes, I seem to recall that, an article on the bunch of first class stooges meeting at the Rooms too. Maybe one was the former chair of the Board, that had recruited GB. They were suffering severely from oil on the brain, as smoke and $ signs was coming from their ears. That was back in the days of having equity steaks, royalties galore, not just royalties but super royalties, as oil was at $100 dollars and going up, and up and up, never to come down, according to their combined wisdom at the time. They had money to burn, so had to do something with it, start something on the River. Yes, get Rolling on the River. Would like to know who the bunch of stooges at that meeting, or was there just 3. Their job was to recurite a bunch of second class stooges, later called world class. So the boondoggle had to have its genesis somewhere, maybe it should be nailed down says Joe blow.