Terri-Jane Yuzda


APEGGA Has Come A Long Way

Re: Membership Reaches 40,000th Mark, The PEGG, November 2003.

I was surprised and pleased to see this article and the picture of President Mike Smyth, P.Eng., welcoming the 40,000th member into the Association!

The Association has come a long way since I had the privilege of welcoming the 5,000th member, William R. Davies in 1968(the Alberta Professional Engineer, November 1968).

I congratulate all those who have worked so hard to make this happen! These are exciting times for the development of Alberta and I am glad to see the Association is in the forefront of this development.

Percy Butler, P.Eng.
APEGGA President, 1968
Victoria, B.C.

Electricity Always Comes At Environmental Cost

Re: New Electrical Source Discovered, The PEGG, November 2003.

Congratulations to Drs. Daniel Kwok and Larry Kostiuk, P.Eng., on their remarkable electric power generation discovery. Unfortunately, the article in The PEGG reported the discovery as being a "non-polluting way of generating electricity."

Oops! Remember, we can't create energy, we can only convert it from one form to another. The key word appears later in the article when it talks about the water being "pumped through tiny microchannels."

Typically, water is pumped by an electrically driven device powered by fossil-fuel fired – and hence, air polluting – gensets. Even for a very small, human-powered device, one could argue that the human body and its energy supply system are polluting systems.

On a related note, there has recently been much incomplete reporting concerning so-called pollution-free electric and fuel-cell powered cars. The authors typically fail to address the question of where the electricity or hydrogen will come from.
This irresponsible writing has left the general public believing that they are about to get something for nothing. Not only has this been prolific in newspapers, it has also been appearing in technical periodicals.

While this may be uninformed reporting on the part of newspapers, it must be intentional on the part of technical publications and as such is unethical and inexcusable.

I don't deny that these cars will provide a benefit. However, that benefit must be truthfully and clearly presented as addressing local air quality issues only, while the pollution problem is moved to someone else's backyard and overall fuel consumption likely increases to pay for the additional energy conversion steps involved with the new technologies.

Doug Emberley, P.Eng.
Fort McMurray

BioSand Filter Is A Great Story

Re: Teenagers Point Mom Down a New Path, Engineer Now Helps Clean Up the Developing World’s Water, The PEGG, November 2003.

I was pleased to see this Tom Keyser article as I too have been involved with the Davnor BioSand filter. In 1998 I was the coordinator of a project, jointly funded by several Rotary clubs in Calgary and the Wild Rose Foundation of Alberta, which arranged for the first BioSand filters to be produced in Haiti.

The developer of the BioSand filter, Dr. David Manz, P.Eng., the president of Davnor Water Treatment Technologies Ltd., traveled to Haiti and spent two weeks training staff at the Hospital Albert Schweitzer on how to construct the filters. Since then hundreds of these water filters have been made available to Haitians by the hospital.

This year I arranged for equipment and supplies for a water quality testing lab to be sent to the hospital. This was funded jointly by the Calgary South Rotary Club (my club), the Rotary Foundation and the Wild Rose Foundation. Davnor put together all the equipment and arranged for air shipment to Haiti.

I’m also pleased to say that Rotarians in Calgary funded the introduction of the first BioSand filters in the Dominican Republic and Dr. Manz was involved in that project as well.

Al King, P.Eng.
Former Councillor and
Executive Committee Member

Design-Build Study Participation Needed

The University of Calgary is conducting a national survey as a part of a research project to investigate the design-build project delivery system. The purpose of this research – being carried out under the supervision of Dr. George Jergeas, P.Eng. – is to produce a delivery model that will benefit all stakeholders by both enhancing the project performance and improving communication and understanding of this project delivery system.

We would like to invite APEGGA members to participate in this exciting and very interesting study. We are seeking input from practitioners across Canada, owners, contractors, designers, construction lawyers and other construction professionals, to form a virtual panel of knowledgeable practitioners in design-build. We are also looking for people who have no experience in design-build.

The survey uses the Delphi study and a mini-questionnaire. Participation will involve completing a three-part Delphi survey and mini-questionnaire. This task will take about 30 minutes each time (a total of three times, about five weeks apart).
After each round, the aggregate responses of all other participants will be provided for participants’ review before making their decisions for the next round.
The survey is done anonymously. The data that will be gathered through this research will be completely confidential and highly protected. There will be no reference to names, individual projects or organizations.

We are communicating with all professional associations for architects, engineers and contractors to ensure full coverage of the topic and to get a balanced opinion for the research.

It is important to participate in this survey and express your views and opinions. Your participation will greatly benefit the construction industry.

Visit www.surveymonkey.com/s.asp?u=44033285048 to participate. Please read the consent form, available from me at sami.fahmy@shaw.ca, before completing the survey.

If you have any questions about the survey or the consent form, please contact me at (780) 430-7558 or (780) 497-3842, or send me an e-mail at the address above.

Sami Fahmy, P.Eng.

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