Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 


Marsden Point refinery vulnerable to fire, tsunami: Air NZ

Marsden Point refinery too vulnerable to fire, tsunami, says Air NZ

By Pattrick Smellie

Jan 8 (BusinessDesk) - New Zealand's only oil refinery, at Marsden Point, is too vulnerable to the risks of a major fire or destruction from a tsunami, says Air New Zealand in a submission on a government review of the country's transport fuel security arrangements.

The national carrier also suggests the country should abandon its $10 million a year membership of the International Energy Agency, which it says is an anachronism and the money spent investing in more robust domestic fuel storage and transport infrastructure.

The submission calls for the creation of a new, standalone fuel storage facility in West Auckland to augment the existing major storage facility at Wiri, in South Auckland. It proposes the new facility be used for ground-based transport fuels while Wiri would solely store jet fuel for use at Auckland International Airport.

The airline approached the oil companies in 2005 with the proposal, but says it now considers "the oil industry collectively will not act to develop a coherent medium-term strategy and undertake new investments that have medium term benefits."

Commenting on risks in current infrastructure, Air NZ says the Marsden Point refinery's various elements "interface into each other", which "makes the complex vulnerable to a fire in, say, the refinery impacting the ability to import fuels over the wharf or to operate the storage facilities, or send fuel down the RAP (refinery to Auckland) pipeline."

"Fires do happen in well run refineries," the submission says, so ensuring the refinery can operate in the event of a fire "is a critical aspect to enhancing New Zealand's fuel supply security."

Likewise, the government's discussion document underplayed the risk to fuel security of a fire at the Wiri terminal, which the airline describes as "the most at risk asset that has the potential to cause the biggest long term problem."

The vulnerability of Marsden Point to tsunami damage should also not be lightly discounted, the airline says.

The Air NZ submission takes a swipe at the inability of the four major oil companies to work together in customers' best interests, saying they had been unable to provide a single data file for the airline's monthly fuel purchases from all four. Similar examples existed in fuel storage infrastructure.

"The government needs to take a more active strategic interest in in promoting sensible economic outcomes for the supply infrastructure for petroleum fuels."

In similar vein, the only New Zealand-owned fuel company of the big four, Z Energy, argues there is a "rare case for an element of government co-ordination in designing an investment framework and programme" to update the country's ageing and inadequate fuel storage and transport arrangements.

Several submissions also call for protection of the Wiri site as a site for transport fuel storage, warning of serious risks if new land uses that could compromise its role as a dangerous goods storage site were permitted.

The submission from the oil company-owned Wiri operation, Wiri Oil Services, says planning is under say to build new storage tanks on the same site but at a distance from existing storage. As a result, one part of the facility could keep operating if a fire or disruption in the other part threatened security of fuel supplies.

(BusinessDesk)

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Prefu Roundup: Forecasts Revised, Surplus Intact

The National government heads into the election with its Budget surplus target broadly intact, delivering a set of economic and fiscal forecasts marginally revised from May to reflect weaker commodity prices and a lower tax take. More>>

ALSO:

Convention Centre: Major New SkyCity Hotel And Laneway For Auckland

Today SKYCITY Entertainment Group Limited revealed plans to build a new hotel and pedestrian laneway of bars, restaurants and boutique shopping on land it owns in the Nelson and Hobson Streets block, expanding the SKYCITY Entertainment Precinct. More>>

ALSO:

Igniting The Spark: Bringing The Digital Enabler To Life

Changing a name is, relatively speaking, the easy part of a re-invention. Changing a culture, getting all the ducks in a row, turning yourself inside-out to become customer-inspired is a much bigger challenge. More>>

ALSO:

Ebola And NZ: Targeted Screening At Airport But Risk Low

The risk of any cases of Ebola in New Zealand remains very low, but health and border authorities are well prepared... anyone arriving in New Zealand who in the last three weeks has visited countries affected will be screened for symptoms of the disease. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Brewer Seeking Crowd-Funding Cancels Shareholders’ Dividends

Shareholders in Renaissance Brewing company, the first business to seek equity through crowd-funding in New Zealand, have cancelled their claim on $147,000 of accumulated earnings “to make Renaissance a more attractive investment opportunity.” More>>

ALSO:

It's Spark Now:
Why Telecom Wanted To Change

New Zealand led the world when Chorus demerged from Telecom. It gave us a telecommunications industry structure where the network is completely separated from the products and services it delivers. The changes brought about a new market dynamic and it dramatically changed Telecom’s role. More>>

ALSO:

Glass Half Empty: Dairy Prices Fall To Lowest Since 2012

Dairy product prices slumped to the lowest level since October 2012 in the latest GlobalDairyTrade auction, paced by whole milk powder and cheddar. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
Computer Power Plus

Standards New Zealand

Standards New Zealand
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Business
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news