Niagara RePower Project

Niagara Falls

Niagara Falls (Photo credit: moarplease)

The Niagara Falls, located on the Niagara River draining Lake Erie into Lake Ontario, is the collective name for the Horseshoe Falls and the adjacent American Falls along with the comparatively small Bridal Veil Falls, which combined form the highest flow rate of any waterfall in the world and has a vertical drop of more than 165 feet (50 m). Horseshoe Falls is the most powerful waterfall (vertical height along with flow rate) in North America. Niagara Falls forms the international border between the Canadian province of Ontario and the U.S. state of New York, also forming the southern end of the Niagara Gorge. The falls are located 17 miles (27 km) north-northwest of Buffalo, New York and 75 miles (121 km) south-southeast of Toronto, between the twin cities of Niagara Falls, Ontario, and Niagara Falls, New York.

The enormous energy of Niagara Falls has long been recognized as a potential source of power. The first known effort to harness the waters was in 1759, when Daniel Joncaire built a small canal above the falls to power his sawmill. Augustus and Peter Porter purchased this area and all of American Falls in 1805 from the New York state government, and enlarged the original canal to provide hydraulic power for their gristmill and tannery. In 1853, the Niagara Falls Hydraulic Power and Mining Company was chartered, which eventually constructed the canals which would be used to generate electricity. In 1881, under the leadership of Jacob Schoellkopf, Niagara River‘s first hydroelectric generating station was built. The water fell 86 feet (26 m) and generated direct current electricity, which ran the machinery of local mills and lit up some of the village streets.

The Niagara Falls Power Company, a descendant of Schoellkopf’s firm, formed the Cataract Company headed by Edward Dean Adams, with the intent of expanding Niagara Falls power capacity. In 1890, a five-member International Niagara Commission headed by Sir William Thomson among other distinguished scientists deliberated on the expansion of Niagara hydroelectric capacity based on seventeen proposals, but could not select any as the best combined project for hydraulic development and distribution. When Nikola Tesla, for whom a memorial was later built at Niagara Falls, New York, U.S.A., invented the three-phase system of alternating current power transmission, distant transfer of electricity became possible, as Westinghouse and Tesla had built the AC-power Ames Hydroelectric Generating Plant and proved it effective. In 1893, Westinghouse Electric was hired to design a system to generate alternating current on Niagara Falls, and three years after that, the world’s first large AC power system was created, activated on August 26, 1895. The Adams Power Plant Transformer House remains as a landmark of the original system.

By 1896, with financing from moguls like J.P. Morgan, John Jacob Astor IV, and the Vanderbilts, they had constructed giant underground conduits leading to turbines generating upwards of 100,000 horsepower (75 MW), and were sending power as far as Buffalo, 20 miles (32 km) away. Some of the original designs for the power transmission plants were created by the Swiss firm Faesch & Piccard, which also constructed the original 5,000HP waterwheels.

Private companies on the Canadian side also began to harness the energy of the falls. The Government of the province of Ontario, Canada eventually brought power transmission operations under public control in 1906, distributing Niagara’s energy to various parts of the Canadian province.

Other hydropower plants were also being built along the Niagara River. But in 1956, disaster struck when the region’s largest hydropower station was partially destroyed in a landslide. The landslide drastically reduced power production and tens of thousands of manufacturing jobs were at stake. In 1957, Congress passed the Niagara Redevelopment Act, which granted the New York Power Authority the right to fully develop the United States’ share of the Niagara River’s hydroelectric potential.

In 1961, when the Niagara Falls hydroelectric project first went on line, it was the largest hydropower facility in the Western world. Today, Niagara is still the largest electricity producer in New York State, with a generating capacity of 2.4 gigawatts (million kilowatts). Up to 375,000 U.S. gallons (1,420 m3) of water a second is diverted from the Niagara River through conduits under the City of Niagara Falls to the Lewiston and Robert Moses power plants. Currently between 50% and 75% of the Niagara River’s flow is diverted via four huge tunnels that arise far upstream from the waterfalls. The water then passes through hydroelectric turbines that supply power to nearby areas of Canada and the United States before returning to the river well past the falls. This water spins turbines that power generators, converting mechanical energy into electrical energy. When electricity demand is low, the Lewiston units can operate as pumps to transport water from the lower bay back up to the plant’s reservoir, allowing this water to be used again during the daytime when electricity use peaks. During peak electrical demand, the same Lewiston pumps are reversed and actually become generators, similar to those at the Moses plant.

During tourist season, water usage by the power plant is limited by a treaty signed by the U.S. and Canada in 1950 to preserve this natural attraction. On average the Niagara river delivers 1,500,000 U.S. gallons (5,700 m3) of water per second, half of which must flow over the falls during daylight hours from April through October. During other times the power plant may use up to three fourths of the total available water. During winter the Power Authority of New York works with Ontario Power Generation, to prevent ice on the Niagara River from interfering with power production or causing flooding of shoreline property. One of their joint efforts is an 8,800-foot (2,700 m)–long ice boom, which prevents the buildup of ice, yet allows water to continue flowing downstream.

The most powerful hydroelectric stations on the Niagara River are the Sir Adam Beck 1 and 2 on the Canadian side and the Robert Moses Niagara Power Plant and the Lewiston Pump Generating Plant on the American side. Together, Niagara’s generating stations can produce about 4.4 gigawatts of power.

In August 2005 Ontario Power Generation, which is responsible for the Sir Adam Beck stations, announced plans to build a new 6.5 miles (10.5 km) tunnel to tap water from farther up the Niagara river than is possible with the existing arrangement. The project is expected to be completed in 2009, and will increase Sir Adam Beck’s output by about 182 megawatts (4.2%).

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Green Economy: Business Transformation and Process Improvement


Continuous Process Improvement is a strategic approach for developing a culture of continuous improvement in the areas of reliability, process cycle times, costs in terms of less total resource consumption, quality, and productivity. Deployed effectively, it increases quality and productivity, while reducing waste and cycle time. The Army has embarked upon one of the largest enterprise-wide deployments of Lean Six Sigma in an effort to institutionalize the tenets of Continuous Process Improvement, a component of Business Transformation. Lean Six Sigma combines the principles of Lean (reducing and eliminating non-value activities) with Six Sigma (reducing variation, increasing quality) to improve process effectiveness and alignment with the voice of the customer.

Lean Six Sigma is a business improvement methodology that maximizes value by achieving the fastest rate of improvement in customer satisfaction, cost, quality, process speed, and invested capital. The fusion of Lean and Six Sigma improvement methods is required because:

  • Lean cannot bring a process under statistical control
  • Six Sigma alone cannot dramatically improve process speed or reduce invested capital
  • Both enable the reduction of the cost of complexity

An award-winning, world-class program applies Lean Six Sigma as a core capability in business transformation by reviewing core business processes to better support business operations, to reduce waste and to improve quality. The ultimate goal is to free human and financial resources for more compelling operational needs. Shingo Prize is a recognition for organizations demonstrating operationally excellent strategies and practices that achieve world-class results in business and public sector/government-owned facilities.

The Army’s Lean Six Sigma program has trained more than 1,450 senior leaders. As of the date of this report, the Lean Six Sigma community has completed nearly 5,200 projects, and more than 1,900 projects are currently in progress. Completed projects have yielded significant financial and operational benefits at organizations across the Army.

Senior leaders have laid out an aggressive and focused agenda on performance management in the Department of the Army. The Army adopted the Lean Six Sigma program more than five years ago to specifically help the Army overcome the unique challenges and complexities of the enterprise. In 2009, the Army submitted $96.6 million worth of projects in response to an Office of Management and Budget data call to support President Obama’s government-wide $100 million savings goal.

In fiscal year 2011 the Army is proposing to train over 3,100 people; and anticipates completing over 3,000 Lean Six Sigma projects. Additionally, the Army is establishing a cost and performance culture in which leaders better understand the full cost of the capabilities they provide and incorporate cost considerations in their planning and decision-making processes. This approach will enable the Army to more efficiently achieve its readiness and performance objectives. To support this effort, the Army is embarking on aggressive plans to provide new top-notch education and training programs for flag officers and senior civilians to give them the business acumen necessary to lead the Army enterprise.

Long Term Social Concervation Strategy

We are in the last decade of an extra -ordinarily eventful twentieth century. The worldhas seen spectacular political, social, cultural, economic and scientific progress during this century. But this progress has been monopolized by the chosen few at the unbelievably and indescribably large cost of the majority of mankind. The most disconcerting manifestation of this lop sided progress has been our planet’s ravaged ecology.

A good environmental sense has been one of the fundamental features of ancient philosophy. However, during the last few decades global circumstances have forced our country into a situation where it is becoming increasingly difficult to practice a life style that does not push this planet towards doom. During the last ten years, there has been a gratifying resurgence of this good environmental sense in this country. The most important aspect of this growing environmental consciousness in this country is its permeation at the establishment as also the people’s level. It is imperative that environmental consciousness becomes a pre-occupation with our people as no amount of government intervention can reverse ecological collapse. I see clear signs of that happening in India. Against this backdrop, we now have a system of environmental checks and balances fully in place. There is enough institutional, legislative and political strength to combine with a responsive citizenry to produce a practicable environmental culture. In Constitutional terms too, India has enough guarantees to protect its ecological systems. Since the inception of this Ministry, we have evolved enough to be able to chart out a life, which is happy without compromising the environment. There is a sizeable number of people who can rein in an indiscriminate establishment. In fact, we are now working towards a unique compatibility between the Development and the Environment.

We have our great past to draw from to create an equally great future. I see this environmentally degraded present only as an aberration for an enlightened civilization.

What you will read in the following pages are some of the specific means through which we propose to attain the goals of an environmentally wise society.

Upcoming conferences

Upcoming conferences
Connecting Water Resources 2013: Changing the water paradigm March 18–21, 2013
The Westin
Ottawa, Ontario
Assessing pathogen fate, transport and risk in natural and engineered water treatment September 23–26, 2012
Banff Centre
Banff, Alberta
Previous conferences
Workshop on lead in drinking water: health impacts, monitoring & control Symposium sur le plomb dans l’eau potable: Impacts sur la santé, surveillance et contrôleJune 8–9, 2011
École Polytechnique de Montréal
Montreal, Quebec
Connecting Water Resources 2011: Responding to the opportunities February 28–March 3, 2011
The Westin
Ottawa, Ontario

Workshops for students and young water professionals

CWN offers exceptional training opportunities that provide well-rounded, multidisciplinary perspectives on water management to graduate students and young water professionals. These week-long workshops offer hands-on experience and equip students and young professionals with the comprehensive understanding and skills they need to succeed as future leaders in the water sector, whether it be within the academic, industrial, governmental or nongovernmental sector.

Please check this page regularly for upcoming workshops in 2012.

Current workshops

Be sure to check again for upcoming workshops in 2012.

Previous CWN workshops

Jointly offered workshops

The Canadian Water Network and Waterlution teamed up in 2011 to offer three regional learning events within Waterlution’s The Future of Water Workshop Series

  • Climate change impacts in New Brunswick: Shifting from mitigation to adaptation (October 28–30, 2011)
  • Water & growth: Exploring prosperity, protection and paradox along the Niagara Escarpment (October 28–30, 2011)
  • Pollution & solutions: Leadership for the Interlake (November 4–6, 2011)

Green LSS

US Army 52848 USAG RC Lean Sigma Green Belt Aw...

US Army 52848 USAG RC Lean Sigma Green Belt Award ceremony on the Village Green (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

To remain competitive in the world marketplace, it is imperative that a company be able to respond quickly to various market demands, such as short lead-times, greater variety of products in lower quantities, price pressure. We can train your teams to in identify areas for improvement in all aspects of their business, and then lead them through the process of implementing our methods to achieve their efficiency goals. Our clients receive the full benefit of our combined expertise and experience in the Kaizen technology, developed and accumulated through long-term relationships with world-class companies.

We will create a unique lean six sigma system tailored to your specific requirements and targeted to enable you to identify problem areas, develop strategies to improve. Our consultants work with the client’s staff to continuously assess and restructure the company’s operational systems to improve efficiency and profitability.

Lean is a discipline focused on eliminating waste (muda – Japanese) and variability throughout the supply chain (large logistics hubs, office, finance, manufacturing processes, customer and supplier system integration).

To compliment the Lean in business improvement projects we often utilized the well known Six Sigma approach. Six Sigma is a data-driven set of standards that drives the exceptional quality in operations. It requires in-depth statistical metrics to analyze quality at all levels of the supply chain, eliminating defects.

Success

 

 

Success is a Journey

When businesses executives consider what’s needed to achieve success, there is a tendency to think in absolutes – vision, hard work, sacrifice, timing, luck. Companies often claim to work on improvement projects that help the “bottom line.” Yet despite these valuable insights and the large amount of project resources allocated in companies, success often seems elusive. We can easily spot the significant gap in commitment to learning how to see success for yourselves and the inability to utilize the tools needed to make improvements on your own.

NOTHING IS PERFECT!

With tough market conditions and operating circumstances dynamically changing, no system will function with absolute perfection and without change. So it becomes more important to adapt a lean mindset of continuous improvement that will help employees and teams to continually seek and devise ways to improve the organization. In today’s competitive market environment business survival depends on the establishing a robust set of values, a philosophy and problem solving tools to help work towards “the ideal state.” Teams have to be open to moving in a new direction and follow the path of business transformation.

Effective management enhances customer satisfaction and increases profits. Every business, regardless of its size, product, or corporate history, strives for high production at low cost, streamlined logistics, and efficient operations. However, while the goal is clear (reducing wasteful inefficiency), companies often lack the necessary tools to identify productivity problems and develop effective and lasting solutions. Businesses have been facing severe economic difficulties regardless of their product or location. To survive they have to be are able to satisfy rapidly-changing market trends, deliver high-quality products/services quickly, at ever more competitive prices. Meeting these challenges without raising prices (to keep customers), while reducing costs of production (to stay in business), requires innovative and responsive management techniques, uniquely suited to each business’s individual needs. Staying in business today demands high efficiency in every aspect of production operations, and although every business executive understands this principle, achieving it is often a daunting challenge.

IBM uses Six Sigma to help public cut energy, waste

The Earth flag is not an official flag, since ...

The Earth flag is not an official flag, since there is no official governing body over Earth. The flag holds a photo transfer of a NASA image of the Earth on a dark blue background. It has been associated with Earth Day. Although the flag was originally copyrighted, a judge ruledhttp://www.tabberone.com/Trademarks/CopyrightLaw/Copyrightability/articles/EarthFlagVsAlamoFlag_A.shtml that the copyright was invalid. Earth Flag Ltd. v. Alamo Flag Co., 154 F. Supp. 2d 663 (S.D.N.Y. 2001) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 IBM has introduced the first consulting service designed to help government organizations analyze energy and water use, assess waste management, evaluate overall environmental impact and develop improvement strategies.The IBM Public Sector Energy and Environment Diagnostic can help governments better understand their overall performance on environmental issues, identify improvements that can increase energy efficiency, reduce environmental impact including greenhouse gas emissions, and help ensure public institutions meet their own rising environmental standards.

IBM developed the diagnostic to help U.S. federal agencies comply with current requirements for broad improvements in efficiency and economy for all environmental, energy and transportation management operations. However, it can be adapted to any future requirements for U.S. government agencies or for use with any other federal, state or municipal government in any country.

“Citizens everywhere are demanding that governments improve efficiency and reduce environmental impact, and public officials at every level are responding by raising standards for how they operate,” said Eric Riddleberger, IBM’s business strategy consulting global leader, who heads up the company’s corporate social responsibility consulting efforts. “Using a comprehensive approach that employs new, smart processes and tools to assess current performance and develop improvements can help public agencies meet those standards while maintaining proper levels of public service.”

The IBM Public Sector Energy and Environment Diagnostic offering uses a proprietary Heat Map tool to provide an initial analysis. Based on IBM’s Component Business Model approach, the tool breaks organizations down into logical segments – finance, operations, procurement, etc. – and then provides an analysis as to how well they are performing in terms of efficiency, cost and environmental impact.

Areas for potential environmental improvement are color coded – red for “most critical,” yellow for “moderately critical,” and green for “performing within guidelines” – to help government institutions prioritize where to make changes. From there, IBM can assist government agencies in developing a comprehensive strategy for prioritizing and implementing those changes, accounting for the cost and benefit of each solution.

Specific areas addressed in the diagnostic are:

  • Environmental management systems – identifying leadership, establishing targets, tracking performance and communicating with stakeholders;
  • Energy and greenhouse gases – addressing efficiency and use of renewable sources;
  • Water management – reducing consumption and improving quality;
  • Waste and disposal – waste prevention, recycling, environmentally responsible disposal, and reducing the use of potentially toxic and hazardous chemicals;
  • Facilities and equipment – sustainable practices in motor fleets and renovation and construction operations;
  • Workforce programs – establishing workforce sustainability programs, training, benefits, and awards for environmental sustainability leadership.

The Public Sector Energy and Environment Diagnostic joins a growing portfolio of consulting offerings from IBM designed to help clients address CSR issues throughout their operations, including: the CSR Assessment and Benchmarking Utility, the Carbon Tradeoff Modeler, Green Sigma, Environmental Product Lifecycle Management, the Supply Chain Network Optimization Workbench (or SNOW), and Strategic Carbon Management.

The public sector diagnostic is designed to be used together with many of these other offerings. For example, after completing an analysis and identifying areas for improvement with the public sector diagnostic, clients can use Green Sigma(TM), which applies Lean Six Sigma principles to measuring and monitoring energy and water usage throughout a organization’s operations, and the Carbon Trade-off Modeler, which helps evaluate and balance carbon dioxide emissions and energy usage with other key factors throughout a supply chain — cost, service and quality.

These offerings use “smart” approaches, such as advanced business processes and monitoring dashboards, which allow clients to collect and analyze large amounts of data to make better decisions.

To learn more about IBM’s strategy and change offerings, visit http://www-935.ibm.com/services/us/gbs/bus/html/bcs_strategyplanning.html?re=gbs_fe_leftnav.