Thursday, January 15, 2015
EPA in Alaska
So a truck driver hauling diesel fuel from the Petro-STAR refinery in Valdez is threatened by “Mama Moose Goose” lights and runs off the road, 48-miles up the Richardson Highway. Wow, that's were all the watershed streams converge then feed the “World Famous” Copper River! So when this seasoned driver hit the ditch, he called his boss in Fairbanks – a Jason Johnson – who told the driver don't worry about it until the morning, as there was only a pin-hole leak. So from 6pm through 3am, all 4000-gallons of sulfur laden diesel, well it disappeared through that pin-hole leak. See, it was an Alaskan sized “pin-hole”, more like a hole the size of a Howitzer round! Now state law requires a “spill” to be reported immediately, otherwise you get to wear the “Dunce Cap”, and maybe handcuffs. Yet, the boss of Alaska Petroleum Distributors went back to sleep – sounds like another Joe Hazelnut at the helm! See, if you wait long enough, well there ain't no need to perform a breathalyser test – just incase! So when the Department of Conservation – which oversees spill clean-up and containment – went finally involved, some 9-hours too late, not only had the time expired to perform a valid field sobriety test, the entire payload had sneaked out of that “pin-hole” and was now making its way to the Tiekel River watershed. So now somebody was in trouble, big trouble, and it will mean jail-time. So the state started overseeing the clean-up efforts because of the “assholes-asleep-at-the-wheel” attitude from the truckers. Maybe they were waiting for that camera crew to show up? But when the sanitation bill went over $1-Million, well it was time for Alaska Petroleum stock-holders to call it quits, as there was no longer any insurance to cover the clean-up costs which meant digging into their own safe-deposit-box as the sulfur laden diesel continued to seep into the watershed at alarming rates - as this stuff doesn't freeze. See, the truck hauling 14000-gallons was going North, to the oil fields of the “Independents”, used as freeze protection for the dry wells these idiots keep encountering after sinking $40-million for, “well” nothing. See, “Big Oil” is smart, as they have their own refinery up in Prudhoe Bay, so don't have to worry about hauling this crap some 800-miles on roads made treacherous by “Ice Road Truckers” looking for that 10-minutes claim to fame on the “Discover the Idiots” channel. Look, the “Independents” are indeed out of their league here in Alaska. So when Jason saw his daddy's dream heading towards bankruptcy, he told the state he could no longer try to protect the world renowned salmon streams and went back to bed. So the state was now responsible, but with falling oil prices, the state has a deficit so they told the EPA it was their responsibility! Talk about passing the buck! Yes, the EPA has now taken over the spill containment and cleanup costs which has already cost the U.S. Taxpayers in excess of $1.5-Million, for something we had nothing to do with! Sure the EPA attorneys will try to get re-reimbursed, but that usually amounts to pennies-on-the-dollar. So we have been screwed, by the trucking outfit and by the State of Alaska. And the state of Alaska has a $51-Billion reserve? Is something wrong with this picture? Sure there is and it goes like this and is yet another indication that “Alaska” never deserved “Statehood”, should have remained a “Territory” as that would have prevented the “Corrupt Bastard Club” from enjoying rape upon underage girls and getting away with it. See, when we found “We're In”, well that provided immunity to the crooks, and “street stoning” was banned! So back some years ago the Alaska Railroad had a similar wreck, a whole lot more diesel fuel went overboard upon the fragile eco-system just south of Talketna. And of course the excuse was a “Moose”! Now the “Railroad” is another outfit that finds it hard to run in the “Black” and can only survive by a “revenue” infusion from Uncle Sam – somewhere in the neighborhood of $45-Million each year since the state took over the rail. Now this train-wreck spill cost Bill “Casey Jones” Sheffield in the neighborhood of $12-Million bucks, for cleanup. Wherein most of that was covered by “State” insurance but in the meantime this was a burden upon the “Railroad's Revenue” so then Governor Tony Knowles decided to declare it a “State of Emergency”, thus allowing the state to file a claim with the “FEMA”, for assistance. Now government assistance doesn't show up overnight, just ask Michael “Heckuvajob” Brown – Dubya's FEMA director during Katrina. So the spill was cleaned up using insurance and fines were paid using state loot and then after Christmas, like a late gift the “FEMA” money showed up – but it was no longer needed! And it is almost impossible to give money back to Uncle Sam, as there is not an open door policy that allows such. You ask for it, you best spend it! Now since the insurance lobby had already paid for the spill, the “FEMA” money ended up as un-used “revenue” and since it was extra, for that year the “Alaska Railroad” actually found some financial soundness – the first and only time it would ever show a “positive” on the balance sheet. See, the $45-million yearly appropriation from Uncle Sam was already spent or earmarked as was the money from Juneau for the ARR executive board's outrageous salaries, which together balanced out to “Zero”, like any worthwhile “balance sheet”. So this $12-million from FEMA from Uncle Sam courtesy the U.S. Taxpayers was added to the “Net Profit”, which was historically “zero” and low and behold the ARR was for once operating in the “Black” by that same amount – a miracle! Wow, now what? So Bill decided to retire, not due pressure from a spill that realized 120000 gallons had wrecked the interior ecosystem, but a CEO's retirement finds a performance bonus option, as the Alaska Railroad is a state run “Corporation” no different than any other similar entity in the private sector. Yes, the performance bonus for the Casey Jones' of past probably didn't amount to a can of beans, but with the railroad now showing a $12-Million “NET”, well it's time for retirement at a 16% “performance bonus” - which means Bill walked away with a handsome $1.9-Million, of U.S. Taxpayers' loot! OK, I got off base. But the moral here is this. Some don't give a rat's ass, as they learned well from our “Corrupt Bastards Club” mentality and when push comes to shove, let somebody else worry about it. I hope that this environmental crime finds jail time for the perpetrators. And it should be a wakeup call to Juneau, that the way the “Independents” are trashing this “Last Frontier” is beginning to show up as the “Lost Frontier”, getting away with environmental crimes without fines and not loosing any sleep over it. No wonder “Big Oil” is pissed. Pin Hole? Maybe it means the size of that Juneau brain!
"Alaska Petroleum Distributors Pin-Cushion"
Posted by Green Mountain Boy at 7:24 AM