Category Archives: Louisiana

Wärtsilä’s control system for Harvey Gulf LNG fueling facility

The contract for the control system for a shore-based liquefied natural gas (LNG) fueling facility in Port Fourchon, Louisiana, USA, has been awarded to Wärtsilä.

The facility is owned by Harvey Gulf International Marine, a major owner-operator of offshore supply and specialty vessels headquartered in New Orleans. It will be used to supply fuel to Harvey Gulf’s fleet of LNG powered platform supply vessels (PSV), and will be the first source of LNG fuel in the Gulf of Mexico. The order was placed in July, 2014.

The Wärtsilä scope of supply comprises the control cabinets, the PLCs, computers, software programming and service commissioning. It is designed to enable the entire fuelling process to be fully controlled from the control room onboard the HARVEY ENERGY class platform supply vessels, thus making the fuelling far more efficient and safer than would be otherwise possible. Delivery is scheduled for November, 2014.

“The Harvey Gulf PSVs are to be fitted with the Wärtsilä LNGPac gas control system, so it was natural that the same basic technology should also be used for the shore fuelling facility. There is a growing need for an LNG fuelling infrastructure in the Gulf of Mexico, so this represents an important step forward. Both Harvey Gulf and Wärtsilä are fully committed to promoting environmentally sustainable operations, and by facilitating the use of LNG as a marine fuel, this philosophy is clearly enhanced,” says Joe Amyot, Sales Director, Wärtsilä Ship Power.

The new fuelling facility will enable the refuelling of offshore supply vessels powered by LNG. It will also have the capability to provide a fuel source for LNG fuelled cargo ships operating in the Houston – New Orleans region.

Harvey Gulf currently has six LNG fuelled PSVs under construction, all of which will be powered by Wärtsilä 34DF dual-fuel engines. The vessels will also have various other Wärtsilä equipment onboard, including the Wärtsilä LNGPac gas storage and supply system. The company, additionally, has two diesel-electric construction vessels in production equipped with Wärtsilä 32 engines and other Wärtsilä solutions.

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LEASE SALE DISPLAYS POWER OF THE GULF

A message from Executive Director Lori LeBlanc

The oil and gas industry demonstrated its confidence in the power of American energy during the federal government’s Central Gulf of Mexico lease sale held March 19 in New Orleans. In fact, a total of 50 companies submitted 380 bids, and the Department of Interior garnered $850 million in high bids for about 1.7 million acres off the coast of Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. This signals a continued strong business interest in offshore energy production.

It’s this confidence in the valuable resources of America’s Gulf that continues to drive our national and state economy, fund the U.S. government, employ hundreds of thousands of men and women across our country, and keep the lights on from Portland, Oregon, to Portland, Maine. Here in Louisiana, we proudly serve as the gateway to the Gulf, the front door to the boundless energy potential miles off of our coast and thousands of feet under the water’s surface. We proudly do a job that other states refuse to do; a job that literally fuels America.

GEST is pleased to help promote this rebirth of the Gulf as America’s energy workhorse, as well as the thousands of men and women who go to work each day to provide power to our people.

Hats off to all of you!

Read More: Here

Billionaire Swindlers Line Up for ObamaCare Cash

July 17, 2013
By Michael Volpe 

An information technology (IT) company in line to bid on billions in new contracts as a result of ObamaCare is the subject of a growing list of scandals and investigations in which its alleged that, among a number of abuses, the company has produced low ball bids in order to win Medicaid related contracts, only to create overages that balloon the expense of the project as it is implemented.

The name of the company is Client Network Services, Inc (CNSI) and it’s headquartered in Maryland. The company will be able to bid on billions in new ObamaCare-related IT contracts because, in order for states to receive new grants for expanded Medicaid rolls, ObamaCare requires states to have IT systems that are able to share data at so-called finger-tip access. Because most states have antiquated systems, such overhauls will often require the assistance of companies like CNSI.

In March, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal canceled one such contract between CNSI and his state after it came to light that a federal grand jury was investigating the relationship between one of his top aides and CNSI.

Front Page Magazine interviewed Tom Aswell, a blogger and author from Louisiana with more than three decades of news experience. Aswell has been writing about the case from the beginning.

Aswell said he first became aware something was amiss in June 2011, when Bruce Greenstein went before the Louisiana Senate Governmental Affairs Committee to be confirmed as the secretary of Louisiana’s Department of Health and Hospitals (DHH), the equivalent of the US Health and Human Services (HHS) secretary.

During the proceedings, things became contentious and confusing when Greenstein refused to divulge the recipient of a contract to upgrade the State of Louisiana’s antiquated computer system, which electronically processed Medicaid health care claims.

Greenstein went back and forth with lawmakers for quite a while before he finally admitted it was CNSI, his own former employer. He assured the state legislators at that hearing that he created a firewall between himself and his former employer during the contractual process.

That turned out not to be true, and, instead, in March 2013, news was leaked that a federal grand jury was investigating the potentially illegal relationship between Greenstein and CNSI during the process in which this contract was awarded.

Once that came to light, not only did Jindal cancel the contract, but Greenstein resigned shortly after. Aswell said that all sorts of issues were raised with CNSI’s bid ($194 million), and a number of people in the media raised concerns that CNSI would not be able to achieve the contract for the pre-arranged price.

In 2012, Southeast Michigan Healthcare Information Exchange (SEMHIE), a multi-stakeholder initiative trying to integrate a health information exchange throughout southeast Michigan, sued CNSI for breach of contract after CNSI allegedly failed to provide SEMHIE with prior agreed upon software. An email was left unreturned by SEMHIE for this story. Jennifer Bahrami, press secretary for CNSI, also didn’t respond to an email for comment for this story.

In 2011, CNSI was accused of lowballing a contract in South Dakota, only to have expenses increase exponentially as the project wore on. A local story on the affair explained:

The South Dakota Department of Social Services has paid $49.7 million so far for a new Medicaid processing system that at this point remains inoperable.

The original contract was for $62.7 million, but the new system is now expected to cost far in excess of $80 million to complete and will take two to three more years to get running, according to court documents filed as part of a lawsuit between the contractor and the department.

The most in-depth investigation of CNSI occurred in Maine in 2006, and it was conducted by the magazine CIO, a journal for IT professionals. In that piece, CIO concluded that not only did CNSI’s system end up costing 20% more than the company’s originally bid, but its implementation was a logistical nightmare.

The department’s Bureau of Medical Services, which runs the Medicaid program, was being deluged with hundreds of calls from doctors, dentists, hospitals, health clinics and nursing homes, angry because their claims were not being paid. The new system had placed most of the rejected claims in a ‘suspended’ file for forms that contained errors.

Tens of thousands of claims representing millions of dollars were being left in limbo.

About 15 IT staffers and about 4 dozen employees from CNSI, the contractor hired to develop the system—were working 12-hour days, writing software fixes and performing adjustments so fast that Hitchings knew that key project management guidelines were beginning to fall by the wayside. And nothing seemed to help.

Because CNSI is a private company, their financials aren’t published, and thus, the exact amount of business it does with our government isn’t known. Furthermore, because most IT-related Medicaid contracts are done on the state level, tracking the amount of IT business that ObamaCare will create is also very difficult to do. It is clear that one company that should be happy with the implementation of ObamaCare is CNSI because it is without a doubt a boon to a company like it. The company’s behavior before and during the implementation of ObamaCare should therefore be watched very carefully and Front Page Magazine intends to do so.

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Galliano, LA: Edison Chouest to build 40 new supply vessels

BY: Jennifer Larino, Managing Editor

Edison Chouest Offshore said today it will build more than 40 new vessels to meet growing demand for offshore oil and gas support in the Gulf of Mexico, the Arctic and Brazil.

The new vessels continue an aggressive build campaign the Galliano-based company launched in 2011. The privately held company, which has vessels under construction at shipyards through the U.S. and in Brazil and Poland, did not disclose the cost of the newest round of builds.

Most of the construction work will be spread among Chouest’s four U.S.-affiliate shipyards — North American Shipbuilding in Larose, LaShip in Houma, Gulf Ship in Gulfport, Miss., and Tampa Ship in Tampa, Fla. — as well as its Brazilian shipyard, Navship.

The largest portion of the new build program will be the construction of 17 diesel-electric platform supply vessels. Chouest intends to market the new vessels, which feature a new hull form designed to carry more weight while lowering hydrodynamic resistance, as a more fuel-efficient option to oil and gas operators in the Gulf of Mexico.

Chouest’s plans also include two new ice class vessels designed for service work in the Arctic and four new subsea construction vessels slated for service in the Gulf of Mexico. The company’s fleet of icebreaking vessels, which will total six when the new builds are delivered, has supported Royal Dutch Shell’s drilling activity in Alaska.

Chouest also provided an update about its affiliated port facilities at Port Fourchon.  The C-Port 3 facility currently under construction will open in March and feature six covered slips to transfer cargo and provide support for deepwater support vessels. Design has begun on an additional section, C-Port 4, which could have as many as nine covered slips.

The company is also planning to expand its C-Terminal worksite at Fourchon to include outside storage areas, warehouses, cement and barite plants, and fuel, water, mud and drilling fluid sales stations. Chouest purchased the facility earlier this year.

Chouest, founded as Edison Chouest Boat Rental in 1960, operates a fleet of nearly 250 offshore service and support vessels worldwide.

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Gulf of Mexico: Harvey Gulf to Build LNG Marine Fueling Facility in Port Fourchon

Harvey Gulf International Marine CEO, Shane Guidry, announced that Harvey Gulf has secured plans to construct and operate the first LNG marine fueling facility in the United States, to be located at its vessel facility in Port Fourchon, Louisiana.

The fueling facility will be a vital addition to the growing national LNG supply infrastructure, supporting critical operations of the oil and gas industry’s offshore support vessel fleet operating on clean burning LNG.

Mr. Guidry commented: “To date, Harvey Gulf is the only company in North America that has committed $400M USD to build, own and operate LNG powered offshore support vessels as we’ll as two LNG fueling docks. It is clear that Harvey Gulf’s entire organization is committed to do its part to help reduce our impact on the environment.”

To support the development of the LNG fueling facility, Harvey Gulf has secured CH•IV International of Houston, Texas as the EPC (Engineering, Procurement and Construction) contractor. The facility will consist of two sites each having 270,000 gallons of LNG storage capacity. The tanks will be stainless steel Type ‘C’ pressure vessels with vacuum insulation and carbon steel exteriors. Each facility will be able to transfer 500 gallons of LNG per minute. Aside from the facilities primary role of supporting the Oil and Gas Industry, the facility will be capable of supporting over-the-road vehicles that operate on LNG. The estimate to complete the first site is February 2014, with the second site following shortly thereafter.

Expanding on its commitment to safety and security of vessel operations and port facilities, Harvey Gulf has actively enlisted the expertise of the USCG to participate at all levels of the development of this facility. Mr. Guidry noted “the success of our LNG new build program would not be possible without the gracious cooperation and commitment of the USCG personnel.”

Harvey Gulf also announced the signing of a 6th Offshore Support Vessel to be built at Gulf Coast Shipyard Group (formerly Trinity Offshore) in Gulfport, MS. With this 6th vessel, Harvey Gulf will become the largest owner and operator of LNG powered OSV’s in the world. These OSV’s represent an ongoing collaborative effort by the vessel designer, Harvey Gulf, ABS and the USCG to develop the most environmentally friendly OSV’s that will operate in the Gulf of Mexico, complying with the stringent ABS Enviro+ notation. With 43 persons on board, the vessels, carrying over 16,000 Bbls of liquid mud, 10,000 cu.ft. of dry cement and 1,500 Bbls of Methanol, are 302′x64′x24.5′ with 7,530 installed kW powering 2,700 kW z-drives.

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