Bangladeshs 2nd LNG Terminal Starts Operations

first_imgBangladesh has commissioned its second LNG terminal with the launch of operations of FSRU Summit LNG offshore Moheshkhali Island in the Bay of Bengal.According to Excelerate Energy, the FSRU completed commissioning of the LNG terminal, owned by Summit LNG Terminal, on April 29, 2019. The terminal has a send-out capacity of 500 million standard cubic feet per day (MMscf/d) of natural gas.In August 2017, Summit entered into a 15-year charter agreement with Excelerate for the FSRU. In addition to providing the vessel, Excelerate acted as the owner’s Engineer for Summit in regard to the fixed infrastructure components of the terminal, which included a subsea plug, mooring system, and subsea pipeline.“The successful completion of the Summit LNG Terminal represents a significant positive change to Bangladesh’s energy supply – helping bolster local industry while benefitting the citizens of the country,” Steven Kobos, Excelerate’s Managing Director, said.In August 2018, Excelerate commissioned its Moheshkhali Floating LNG (MLNG) terminal – Bangladesh’s first LNG import facility. MLNG has so far imported 27 cargoes of LNG and delivered in excess of 70 million MMBtus of natural gas into the Bangladeshi market, which represents an increase in gas supply of over 10% during this period.last_img read more

RCMPs Bruce Carson investigation probes contract with former escort Calgary thinktank emails

first_imgBy Kenneth Jackson and Jorge BarreraAPTN National NewsArmed with thousands of emails written by Bruce Carson, the RCMP has stepped up its investigation into the activities of Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s former confidante, APTN National News has learned.Investigators with the RCMP’s Commercial Crime Unit are actively probing the activities of the former political operative nicknamed “The Mechanic” regarding his dealings with federal Aboriginal Affairs officials, his relationship with an Ottawa-based water company and the role played by Carson’s fiancée, a former escort who went by the name of Leanna VIP.Investigators already hold thousands of emails written by Carson along with documents on his laptop computer from his time as head of the Canada School of Energy and Environment, a $15 million think-tank created by the Conservative government. The emails would reveal the extent of the electronic networking world of a man who professed links to highest levels of federal political power and Alberta’s energy titans.Carson, a former adviser in the Prime Minister’s Office, is under investigation for alleged illegal lobbying and influence peddling by three different agencies, including the RCMP, the Lobbying Commissioner and the Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner.None of those investigations have reached their conclusions.The Prime Minister’s Office requested the probes on March 16, 2011, following a meeting between the PMO’s director of communications and APTN National News reporters investigating links between Carson and an Ottawa-based water company seeking to sell filtration systems to First Nation reserves hard hit by contaminated water.The water company, H2O Pros, also known as H2O Global Group, had signed a financial arrangement guaranteeing a share of profits to Carson’s fiancee, a former Ottawa escort, on the sales of water filtration systems to First Nation communities. Carson attempted to use his federal government connections to land meetings with Aboriginal Affairs officials to promote the company’s product.Carson told APTN National News that he also planned to use his contacts with Minister John Duncan and Environment Minister Peter Kent to help the company sell its water filtration system to First Nations in deals worth potentially tens of millions of dollars.Duncan and Kent both denied ever discussing the company with Carson.RCMP investigators initially told APTN National News last March that they did not have an official complainant and that they were launching a preliminary review of the matter. In September, an RCMP spokesperson said the investigation had wrapped up. But then the federal police force retracted the statement, saying an official investigation had yet to be launched.The probe, however, has since been taken to another level with two new officers from the same unit.RCMP investigators have already obtained thousands of emails Carson wrote while he was director of the Canada School of Energy and Environment. When Carson stepped down from his post after the scandal broke, the think-tank immediately secured Carson’s laptop and its contents were made available to investigators from all three agencies.This past February, investigators contacted Nicolas Kaszap, the former co-owner of H2O Pros, and approached him for an interview.During an exclusive interview with APTN National News, Kaszap said he told the RCMP investigators he was present when the company signed its financial deal giving 20 per cent of gross profits from sales of water filtration systems to First Nations to Michele McPherson, the former Ottawa escort who had agreed to marry Carson. He told them Carson witnessed and initialed the contract. The amount was eventually lowered to 15 per cent in a subsequent contract.Kaszap, who left the company over a business dispute, confirmed he met with the RCMP.Kaszap said RCMP investigators issued their standard preamble for an interview that is part of an official investigation, telling him his statement would be recorded and could be used as evidence if the probe led to charges and an eventual trial.Kaszap said that during the interview, the investigators focused on the initial contract, McPherson’s role, meetings with Aboriginal Affairs officials and the degree of Carson’s influence over the company. Kaszap said they had a number of emails in hand, which they referred to during the interview.“They pretty much wanted to get to the bottom of (Carson’s) involvement and how much did he really know about the company,” said Kaszap.Kaszap said investigators asked about a Sept. 14, 2010 meeting he attended involving Carson, water company president Patrick Hill and federal Aboriginal Affairs official Gail Mitchell, the director general of the community infrastructure branch, Garry Best, director of the engineering and technical services directorate, and another official.Kaszap said that Carson tried to make it clear to the officials that he wasn’t part of the company and only there to guide them. Kaszap said he told investigators that the company made the pitch and Carson sat apart, at the end of the table. Carson did ask questions about funding and how the company could get it, Kaszap said.Kaszap said he told investigators his involvement with Carson and company diminished after that meeting. On Oct. 23, 2010, he signed over his shares in the company and left for good.Investigators also asked who Carson claimed to have connections with and whether Kaszap believe Carson could deliver deals for the water company.Kaszap said he told investigators Carson claimed he knew people like Assembly of First Nation Chief Shawn Atleo, television handyman Mike Holmes, former cabinet minister Jim Prentice, Aboriginal Affairs Minister John Duncan and Prime Minister Harper.Kaszap said he told the RCMP he did believe Carson had high-powered connections and could help the company sell its water filters through the AFN and Aboriginal Affairs.Carson told APTN last March during a series of interviews that he was in contact with Harper and several of his ministers on a regular basis.“I thought they (RCMP) were trying to get as much information about Bruce as they could. I gave it to them as the best of my abilities. He said he could basically push a pilot project through and go from there basically,” said Kaszap. “I think they really want to confirm he did tellPat (Hill) and the company he would take care of everything and he would do everything for the company as long as Michele (McPherson) was taken care of in the end. That was really what his priority was all about.”Kaszap’s version is corroborated by an email Carson sent to him on July 26, 2010, following a meeting with AFN officials.“Thought we did as well as we could today–i (sic) told Michele and I will you because it means so much to her and I that we will get this done -the AFN need my help of getting rid of the Indian Act-so all of this will work together—i (sic) think 6 months from now we will be well on our way,” wrote Carson.Kaszap said Carson repeated that message in person several times.The RCMP also turned their questions to McPherson. Kaszap said they asked several times if she did any work for the company while he was there and whether she was paid.Kaszap told them she was not paid and did not do any work.The investigators were also interested in the contract between the company and McPherson that guaranteed her a share of the profit from sales of water filtration systems to First Nations.According to the contract, McPherson was supposed to act as the agent of the company or face for all dealings with First Nations.The RCMP wanted to know what qualifications McPherson had to perform this task.Kaszap said she had none.Kaszap said he told the investigators he thought the contract was a legal way for McPherson to get money for nothing.The contract was signed in a Chateau Laurier meeting room on Aug. 31, 2010, two weeks before the first meeting with Aboriginal Affairs officials, Kaszap said he told the RCMP.Kaszap said he told investigators he had misgivings, but signed it anyway, along with McPherson and Hill. He said Carson initialed the document as a witness.The company was never able to sell one water filtration unit to a First Nations community.“I think they wanted to have the terms of the contract, what was said and who was there,” said Kaszap, about his RCMP interview.The investigators also wanted to know when and how many times Kaszap met Carson.He said they met through McPherson in June 2010, and that he met Carson several times. He also told investigators McPherson asked him to pretend to be her brother for the initial meeting.“What I felt from it was they were trying to get a timeline of when I met Bruce and what was involved in the conversations with him and what he said he could do, who he knew, who he spoke to and stuff like that,” said Kaszap.Kaszap said investigators, referring to an email they had in hand, stated it was odd that Carson was being sent materials from Aboriginal Affairs officials and the AFN when such information would typically be sent directly to the company.Kaszap said he “felt like I worked for him (Carson)” and once wrote Carson thanking him for keeping him in the [email protected]@aptn.calast_img read more

Trump administration to deploy National Guard troops to USMexico border

first_img Show Caption Hide Caption 1234 Show Caption Hide Caption Trump administration to deploy National Guard troops to U.S.-Mexico border Show Caption Hide Caption Categories: Local San Diego News, National & International News Tags: Border Wall, President Donald Trump FacebookTwitter 00:00 00:00 spaceplay / pause qunload | stop ffullscreenshift + ←→slower / faster ↑↓volume mmute ←→seek  . seek to previous 12… 6 seek to 10%, 20% … 60% XColor SettingsAaAaAaAaTextBackgroundOpacity SettingsTextOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundSemi-TransparentOpaqueTransparentFont SettingsSize||TypeSerif MonospaceSerifSans Serif MonospaceSans SerifCasualCursiveSmallCapsResetSave SettingsWASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump and border-state governors are working to “immediately” deploy the National Guard to the U.S.-Mexico border to fight illegal immigration, with some troops potentially arriving later Wednesday, Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen said.“The threat is real,” Nielsen said at an afternoon briefing, adding that Trump was signing a proclamation to put the deployment into effect. “It’s time to act.”The announcement came hours after Trump pledged “strong action today” on immigration and a day after he said he wants to use the military to secure the southern border until his “big, beautiful wall” is erected.In a tweet early Wednesday, Trump said that “Our Border Laws are very weak” and that Democrats “stand in our way” of new laws. He added, “We will be taking strong action today.”Trump told reporters on Tuesday that he’d been discussing the idea of using the military at the border with Defense Secretary Jim Mattis.“We’re going to be doing things militarily. Until we can have a wall and proper security, we’re going to be guarding our border with the military,” Trump said, calling the move a “big step.”President Donald Trump said Tuesday he wants to use the military to secure the U.S.-Mexico border until his promised border wall is built and warned Mexico to halt the passage of “caravans” of immigrants or risk U.S. abandonment of NAFTA. (April 3)Federal law prohibits the use of active-duty service members for law enforcement inside the U.S., unless specifically authorized by Congress. But over the past 12 years, presidents have twice sent National Guard troops to the border to bolster security and assist with surveillance and other support. The White House counsel’s office has been working on the idea for several weeks, according to a senior official who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss internal plans.Trump has been frustrated by slow action on building a wall along the Mexican border. He’s previously suggested using the Pentagon’s budget to pay for the wall, arguing it is a national security priority, despite strict rules that prohibit spending that’s not authorized by Congress.Nielsen said the administration was considering a model similar to a 2006 operation in which President George W. Bush deployed National Guard troops to the southern border, with a focus on assisting U.S. Customs and Border Protection personnel.“We are anxious to have the support,” she said.Under Operation Jump Start, 6,000 National Guard troops were sent to assist the border patrol with non-law enforcement duties while additional border agents were hired and trained. Over two years, about 29,000 National Guard forces participated as forces rotated in and out. The Guard members were used for surveillance, communications, administrative support, intelligence, analysis and the installation of border security infrastructure. In addition, President Barack Obama sent about 1,200 National Guard troops to the U.S.-Mexico border in 2010 to beef up efforts against drug smuggling and illegal immigration.Texas also deployed military forces to its 800-mile (1,290-kilometer) border with Mexico. Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry, now Trump’s energy secretary, sent 1,000 Texas National Guardsmen to the Rio Grande Valley in 2014 in response to a sharp increase in Central American children crossing the border alone.Trump met Tuesday with top administration officials, including Mattis, Nielsen and Attorney General Jeff Sessions, to discuss the administration’s strategy to address what White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders described as “the growing influx of illegal immigration, drugs and violent gang members from Central America.”In addition to mobilizing the National Guard, Trump and senior officials “agreed on the need to pressure Congress to urgently pass legislation to close legal loopholes exploited by criminal trafficking, narco-terrorist and smuggling organizations,” Sanders said.Trump has been fixated on the issue since he grudgingly signed a spending bill last month that includes far less money for the wall than he’d hoped for.The $1.3 trillion package included $1.6 billion for border wall spending — a fraction of the $25 billion Trump made a last-minute push to secure. And much of that money can be used only to repair existing segments, not to build new sections.Trump spent the first months of his presidency bragging about a dramatic drop in illegal border crossings. Indeed, the 2017 fiscal year marked a 45-year low for Border Patrol arrests. But the numbers have been slowly ticking up since last April and are now on par with many months of the Obama administration. Statistics show 36,695 arrests of people trying to cross the southwest border in February 2018, up from 23,555 in the same month of the previous year.At last week’s meeting, Trump “directed a vigorous administrative strategy to confront this threat and protect America’s national security,” Sanders said. Tuesday’s briefing was a follow-up to discuss the plans. Show Caption Hide Caption center_img AP, Steve Bosh AP, Steve Bosh, Posted: April 4, 2018 Show Caption Hide Caption Show Caption Hide Caption April 4, 2018 Updated: 6:14 PMlast_img read more