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Cut out the middleman — just get your facts from the horse’s mouth.
That might be the way you look at the new world of social media. Who needs the old-school media, when companies or governments can reach out and deliver the goods right to your computer?
Well, maybe the media’s needed because that direct delivery of information always looks at the sunny side of life.
Take this social media missive from Nalcor last week.
“Check out our (Muskrat Falls) website for an update on how things are going on the software and equipment for the Labrador-Island Link (LIL),” the company tweeted.
Here’s that update: “GE is getting closer to fixing the issues with the three synchronous condensers at Soldiers Pond — these are essentially large motors that help maintain the reliability of the electricity grid once LIL is online. GE expects the three units will be in service in June 2020. The units do not need to be in service to flow power over LIL for testing. GE is progressing through their testing process for LIL software; however, their progress is slower than they planned. While it’s disappointing they’re not progressing as quickly as scheduled, they are working towards delivery of software in 2020. We’ll continue to share information on their progress.”
If the latest deadline is met, that will mean the condensers are two years and three months behind schedule. And Hydro warned the PUB, “further schedule slippage remains a risk.”
Missing from that essentially upbeat update?
When Nalcor says “it’s disappointing that GE is not progressing as quickly as scheduled,” they don’t point out that this latest delay is only part of a parade of delays.
Originally, the software in question was supposed to be complete, and the LIL capable of being in service, in 2016. When the project was “rebaselined” in 2017, the software was to be completed by September 2018.
It’s now 2020 — and “they’re working towards delivery of software in 2020,” which means anytime up to Dec. 31, 2020. When in 2020, you ask? Well, Newfoundland and Labrador Hydro told the Public Utilities Board (PUB) in a letter last Friday that GE “will be providing a new schedule to Nalcor” sometime in the next week or so.
Meanwhile, those synchronous condensers were supposed to be ready for full operation in March 2018. If the latest deadline is met, that will mean the condensers are two years and three months behind schedule. And Hydro warned the PUB, “further schedule slippage remains a risk.”
Not mentioned in the update? That the PUB has been told by outside consultants that “The operation of the synchronous condensers, which is not possible with the current uncertainties, is necessary to permit … commissioning testing at greater than low power levels.”
That’s interesting, when you compare it to the upbeat update’s “The units do not need to be in service to flow power over LIL for testing.”
So, like Nalcor says, “We’ll continue to share information on their progress.”
Only the best kind of information, keep in mind.