The BC Construction Monitor - Environmental Assessments
In the debate over energy infrastruc-ture and other major projects, one common question recently has been whether proposals are being rigorously enough reviewed. This issue of the Monitor takes a close look at what major project review processes actually consist of.
Even with more renewables and energy efficiency, rising global demand means we’ll need to rely on conventional energy sources for a long time yet. Fossil fuels provided 84% of the world’s energy in 2012, and are projected to provide 78% in 2040.
Chris Gardner and Jordan Bateman talk about the BC Liberal leadership race, the swan song of Gregor Robertson (and Greg Moore), B.C.-Asia trade, and minimum wage. Watch us now – or download later as a free audio podcast in the iTunes or Google Play stores (just search for ICBA Cast).
The popular Harassment in the Workplace – Employer Responsibilities breakfast session is back! Our next session will take place on January 24 in Burnaby; don’t miss out!
The presenter will cover the following issues:
What is bullying and harassment and what are the risks?
What should an Employer do when faced with a potential bullying and harassment situation?
Employer’s duty to investigate
Complaints made for improper reasons
Creation of policies
Access to information
Proactive steps to help protect the workplace
Participants will be provided with real life examples involving the above topics together with practical business-based solutions. There will also be time for questions, so feel free to think about some real-life situations you may need some assistance with. You will also earn 2 Group A Continued Professional Development points from BC Housing.
To register for this course or any of ICBA’s other training sessions, visit www.icba.ca/training. Or, send our training team a message at email@example.com. They’d love to chat with you.
ICBA Communications Director Jordan Bateman joined HoweStreet.com’s Jim Goddard just as news broke that Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson will NOT run for re-election. They talked about Robertson’s run as mayor, next month’s BC Budget, and why Premier John Horgan is leaving his energy minister at home while he goes on a trade mission to Asia.
We invite you to register now for our January 17 breakfast session in Burnaby, Drugs and Alcohol in the Workplace – Employer Rights and Obligations.
With the prevalence of prescribed marijuana for medical reasons, employers need to be aware of their options. How do you deal with an employee in a safety-sensitive role who has a medical marijuana licence? Are they still allowed to perform their safety sensitive job? If an employee with a licence says they need to use their marijuana at the workplace, how is this addressed? Are employees with medical marijuana licences exempt from drug testing?
Here’s what will be covered:
Drug and Alcohol Policies
Testing for Drug and Alcohol Use
Consequences for Testing Positive
Impaired at Work Situations
Accommodation requirements for workers with drug and or alcohol addiction
Suggested wording on Medical Marijuana to update company policies.
ICBA Communications Director Jordan Bateman cut a 90-second guest editorial for NL Radio in Kamloops Jan. 3 – and dug into why Site C matters for Kamloops residents.
It’s easy to think that big decisions like the Site C Dam project won’t have a major effect on you, your friends or your neighbours in Kamloops.
After all, Site C is nearly a thousand kilometres away from Riverside Park. How could a Fort St. John construction site possibly contribute to the prosperity of your community?
But for 89 families living in and around Kamloops, Site C is everything. 89 men and women from your city are part of the thousands working to build the dam. And the NDP’s decision to keep the project going was a huge relief to them.
That’s 89 families who can now count on up to 7 more years of high-paying, steady work at the dam. And more construction workers will be needed as the project progresses. A generation of apprentices will cut their teeth building Site C – becoming the backbone of the industry for decades to come.
Those 89 families aren’t the only beneficiaries in Kamloops. Keeping the project going saved us all from a 10 per cent Hydro rate hike. That’s a big chunk of change for the average family.
And the electricity that Site C will generate will be used by every business, every government office, every home for the next century.
Want a thriving tech economy in this province? We’ll need Site C’s clean power.
Want to make life more affordable? We’ll need Site C’s inexpensive power.
Want a good quality of life? We’ll need Site C’s reliable power.
Kamloops may be a thousand kilometers away from Site C, but the city is a big winner.
For NL Radio and the Independent Contractors and Businesses Association, I’m Jordan Bateman.
The new year will be here in less than two weeks, and it’s time to start thinking about your 2018 training needs. It’s never too early to make a plan!
Our training department is here to help. The new year will bring new courses, including new breakfast sessions such as The Energy Step Code and new technical training programs such as a January workshop on Aerial Boomlifts/Scissor Lifts in Prince George.
Have you subscribed to our biweekly training newsletter? It’s as easy as visiting www.icba.ca/trainingnewsletter; we tailor each newsletter directly to your region to make sure the courses you receive are easily accessible. No more frustration when a course interests you but it isn’t offered in your area!
We will continue to offer some of our most popular sessions, such as Responsibilities of Joint Health & Safety Committees, Occupational First Aid Level 1, Effective Management Skills and many, many more. The training department adds new courses nearly every week all over BC; check out www.icba.ca/training for the latest updates and to register for any of our upcoming courses.
Want more information or looking to suggest a course? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org; we’d love to talk about training with you! Don’t forget, most of our courses offer Gold Seal Credits and BC Housing Continued Professional Development Points.
The training department wishes you a safe and happy holiday season and we look forward to seeing you at one of our courses in 2018!
One of our popular past training courses is coming back in 2018! The ICBA training department is pleased to add Project Planning & Cost Control to our Lower Mainland course calendar in February.
The course is designed to provide owners, managers, estimators, and field personnel with a general knowledge of the process of planning and controlling a project from beginning to end utilizing ways and means of monitoring, saving and controlling costs. Here’s what’s covered:
Understanding the impact and methodology of construction cost control.
Ways and means of minimizing and controlling costs on site.
Project cost forecasting and accounting functions on site.
Project planning and its purpose and effect on project cost control.
How to communicate & assist management re: cost methods and control.
Gain additional insight into the process of work and cost analysis.
Cost reporting systems – new technology in monitoring costs and reports.
Understanding the effect improper field reporting has on cost control. Maintaining and managing documents, material, tools and equipment.
Understanding the Contract process from bidding to project close-out.
Review of 100 companies and their methods in controlling & saving costs.
You’ll also earn Gold Seal Credits and Continued Professional Development Points from BC Housing. The two-day session starts February 20; register now here.
Interested in putting this course on privately for your employees? Email our training team at email@example.com and they will handle all of the logistics for you.
You don’t have to be a member to take our training! Start planning your 2018 workshops now by checking out www.icba.ca/training.
Canada just can’t seem to get out of our own way when it comes to major infrastructure projects and responsible resource development. Political leaders and bureaucrats keep tripping us up with red tape, questionable decisions, higher taxes and costly self-inflicted mistakes. One could be forgiven for thinking that we have set about to sabotage our economic future.
Earlier this year, a little-known federal body, the Canadian International Trade Tribunal (CITT), issued a decision that, if left to stand, could kill British Columbia’s emerging LNG industry and cost us thousands of high-paid jobs and billions in new investment.
LNG Canada is close to a final investment decision on a major LNG plant in Kitimat – the $40 billion project would represent the largest private sector investment ever anywhere in Canada. To do it, the company would need large complex steel modular components built abroad and transported to B.C. where they will be installed.
But the trade tribunal has issued a ruling that certain fabricated industrial steel components exported from China, South Korea and Spain, are being “dumped” into the Canadian market and causing “injury” to the Canadian domestic steel industry.
This has created a major problem for the emerging LNG industry in B.C. A key component of LNG facilities – large, complex, steel modular components – can only be built at a few shipyards around the world. No company in Canada can build these things here. The components cannot, and will not, be produced in Canada.
Astoundingly, CITT chose not to decide on the critical issue of these large complex steel modules, simply lumping them in with all the other steel imports.
We’re baffled. How on earth is the Canadian steel industry harmed if it is incapable of producing these large complex steel modules in the first place?
The Independent Contractors and Businesses Association has repeatedly expressed concern about the ruling’s impacts on the broader competitiveness of B.C.’s construction industry. There is simply no domestic supplier network – including fabricated steel – that warrants protection from international competition.
And as bad as the ruling is for the construction industry generally, it could be fatal for B.C.’s potential LNG industry, and it simply couldn’t have come at a worse time.
LNG Canada and Woodfibre LNG are both hard at work “sharpening their pencils” as they drive toward final investment decisions. If this CITT decision stands, it will inflate costs and could very well make these projects uncompetitive.
The trade tribunal risks smothering billions of dollars in investment and killing thousands of jobs. LNG Canada alone would need 4,000 workers to build a facility in Kitimat. In addition, 3,000 more workers would be required to build the pipeline that will move natural gas from B.C.’s northeast to the west coast.
The Conference Board of Canada has estimated that the LNG industry could deliver $7.4 billion annually to Canada’s GDP and generate about 65,000 jobs per year over 30 years.
An all-hands-on-deck approach – including the federal government acting in the national interest – is required as the LNG industry drives hard toward the final investment decision goal line in 2018.
B.C. and Canada do not have a great record of approving and building large infrastructure projects – witness the cancellation of PNW LNG, Energy East, and Northern Gateway while Site C, Keystone XL and the TransMountain Pipeline expansion projects are all facing legal challenges and protests. No wonder B.C. has sunk to the bottom 25 per cent, worldwide, of places where oil and gas executives feel comfortable investing billions of dollars.
If there was an international “get-to-yes” challenge on major infrastructure projects, B.C. and Canada would fail.
The stakes are high. We need to find a way to build these projects or risk being forever labelled a country where new capital, new talent and new ideas are not welcome. All Canadians will benefit through increased tax revenue, job creation, and the purchase of goods and services throughout the energy value chain. Further, Indigenous communities are important partners and significant beneficiaries from these projects.
The CITT’s recent ruling is short-sighted and potentially fatal for the LNG industry. Time is of the essence, and the federal government should overturn this ill-advised, ill-considered and ill-timed trade ruling.
And if the federal government fails this test, British Columbians and all Canadians will be the losers – our competitiveness and our long-term prosperity will suffer while our global competitors will benefit.