C02 Is No Pollutant
Re: All They Are Saying Is Give Coal a Chance, The
PEGG, September 2003
This is a very interesting and timely article on the state-of-the-art
of engineering of coal fixed electrical generation plants.
However, I do want to point out one misleading portion.
Midway through, the story says, "GP3 also reins in pollution
The next paragraph states, "The result is a 10 per cent
CO2 is not a pollutant. It is a minor constituent
of our atmosphere essential to the growth and well-being of
Claims that it is a major driver in the "greenhouse effect"
are misleading. Studies show that water vapour is responsible
for 97 per cent of the effect.
Further on in the article NO2 and sulphur reductions
are rightly credited with lowering pollution. The public must
be made aware that CO2 is not a pollutant.
Eric Loughead, P.Geol.
Technical Emphasis Needed
Re: APEGGA Has Lost Its Way, The PEGG, Readers' Forum,
I fully agree with the letter by Merle Wilde, P.Eng. APEGGA
has lost its way, and for some time now.
The placement of its offices within prime real estate has
no rational explanation.
As far as decisions being made by APEGGA, all decisions that
affect members should be put to a full membership vote. Otherwise,
what proof is there that the organization is representing
Most of the Continuing Professional Development qualifying
time has nothing to do with technical expertise. Engineers,
geologists and geophysicists are technical experts (or should
be) by profession, not community leaders and hockey coaches
I have never received any benefit out of APEGGA other than
being able to obtain cheap life insurance - and I have been
a member for 30 years!
I think it's time for the deadwood to be cleared out and
APEGGA be re-organized into a truly progressive, technical-professional
organization, instead of a patronization society for its leadership.
Bill Bohdan, P.Eng.
Re: Energy Sustainability - Economic Millstone or the
Key to Competitiveness? Expert's Corner, The PEGG, September
2003, by Peter Garforth, P.E.
How nice, for a change, to see a writer in a mainstream
Alberta publication who is not complaining about the Kyoto
Accord, denying the climate change effects of energy consumption,
or alleging that the sky will fall if energy production and
consumption are curtailed in the interest of health and planetary
sustainability. Mr. Garforth's article should be required
reading for politicians - municipal, provincial and federal
- as well as for engineers and engineering students.
Some will no doubt complain that Mr. Garforth is writing with
a bias, since he makes his living from advising on how to
reduce consumption. But surely his bias is no greater than
that of those people tied to energy production who constantly
At least Mr. Garforth's bias makes sense in relation to the
growing scientific consensus on global warming, atmospheric
pollution and fossil fuel exhaustion.
Charles R. Neill, P.Eng.
Why Is So Much Mandatory?
Fulfilling APEGGA's mandatory requirements, as reported in
recent editions of The PEGG, has become more time consuming.
Firstly, there's Professional Practice Management Plans for
permit holders. A PPMP is now a regulatory requirement. Am
I the only member who missed previous announcements on this?
Draft 2.0 of the May 2003 Guideline for Professional Management
Plans says that "as a minimum, a PPMP shall address:
Management, Organization and Responsibilities; Ethical Standards;
Professional and Technical Resources; Quality Control; and
Professional Documents and Records." The plan must be
reviewed and revised (as needed) annually.
The document goes on, "This guideline is meant to assist
APEGGA permit holders to prepare a PPMP that will satisfy
regulatory requirements," and, "Ideally, this document
will also be helpful to permit holders in considering how
they manage their professional practices."
Improving the management of professional practices, therefore,
is only a potential secondary benefit and not the main objective.
How does this provide added protection to the public? Who
initiated the PPMPs? APEGGA or the Alberta Government?
Secondly, there's Continuing Professional Development. Legislation
now includes a provision that will result in a member being
struck from the register if he or she fails to produce a record
of CPD activities within 30 days of being asked for one.
The intent of the CPD Program is admirable, although the application
of this enforcement will be interesting. Think of it from
the perspective of the public, if a full-time technical specialist
loses his or her P.Eng. membership for not maintaining adequate
records or failing to be a Boy Scouts Leader, while a non-practicing,
non-technical person maintains the P.Eng. designation.
I request that APEGGA publish a comprehensive spreadsheet
comparing its major requirements, such as the ones mentioned
here, with those of other Canadian associations. What are
other associations' programs and mandatory follow-up requirements?
Wim Veldman, P.Eng.