Cape Cod Times (Oct 13th)

Nantucket board backs untested erosion plan

By JOSHUA BAILING The Inquirer and Mirror October 13, 2009

NANTUCKET – The Nantucket Planning and Economic Develop­ment Commission has reaffirmed its support for a so-far untested plan to curb erosion of the island’s beaches by sink­ing man-made structures beyond the surf.

The commission voted unani­mously last week to support the development of a pilot project by island visitor and international marine-salvage operator Joe Farrell, and instructed its staff to assist in the planning process and site selection.

Farrell, the head of Resolve Marine Group, one of the world’s largest ship-salvage, marine fire protection and hazardous-mate­rials response companies; plan­ning director Andrew Vorce; and marine superintendent Dave Fronzuto have identified four potential sites for the test proj­ect: a stretch of the north shore adjacent to Dionis, off the end of Madaket Road, the area off the former Navy Base in Tom Nev­ers and off Fishermen’s Beach in Surfside.

Under Farrell’s plan, remov­able concrete barges weighing 800 to 1,400 tons would be posi­tioned offshore in such a way to deflect the energy of ocean waves before they reached the beach, thereby minimizing the impact of erosion.

Farrell estimated it would cost roughly $5 million to $8 million a mile to install the concrete structures, and he would work with the town to seek private funding from impacted property owners to pay the bill.

While he admits it’s unproven technology, he’s sunk more than $375,000 of his own money into monitoring the currents and ocean floor off Madaket, and the results have led to endorsements from scientists at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, he said.

“I love the island, and I can reverse what is happening out here, and it’s only from getting my butt kicked by the ocean for 30 years. My problem has always been getting rid of sand,” Farrell said.

“I’d like to do some test proj­ects on town property. Let me try to figure out how we get funding. There are enough people with property at risk on this island, they might be willing to come forward with funding to move this project forward.”

Farrell said the barges would be constructed in such a way to also become fish habitat, so they would be a boon to island anglers as well. As for the proposed locations, Fronzuto said there were several criteria.

“They had to be town-owned properties, with no or minimal impact on endangered species, and two of those areas have abandoned septic systems. At the Navy base, there is some stuff out there that there is no way to get out of the water. As part of the permitting process, those areas could be cleaned up.”

Farrell acknowledged that most people probably don’t con­sider erosion an issue on the north shore, but the Dionis proj­ect would be the simplest one to undertake, with a strong likeli­hood of private contributions.

“It’s simpler on the north shore. There are little waves and big money on that side of the island,” he said.

After spending about 15 min­utes debating how much effort the planning staff should invest in moving the project forward, the commission gave it its bless­ing.

Resolve Restores Fuel Supply Infrastructure In Jamaica

Resolve Marine Group has successfully restored a pipeline which carried almost all of Jamaica’s fuel supply after it was damaged in a tanker accident.

The company reports:
“On June 3rd Resolve was contacted by PetroJam, Jamaica’s oil refinery, in response to
an incident that damaged its main oil & cargo transfer berths. A tanker was scheduled to offload heavy fuel oil on June 2nd when it collided with its berth, damaging a crucial 90ft section of the dock that housed the intake manifolds for nearly all of the LPG (liquid petroleum gas), Ethanol, Gas, Diesel, Heavy oil, and Kerosene lines; essentially interrupting the flow of all the fuels entering Jamaica.

“Resolve was contracted following a 3rd party’s recommendation and immediately mobilised, surveyed the area, and utilised local resources to quickly inspect the debris and salvage any reusable pipes. Time was of the essence as every passing hour meant costly delays in refuelling cruise/shipping vessels, airlines, power facilities, mass transit and general road transportation.

“Preliminary inspections using Resolve’s divers and remote operated vehicles (ROV) found that none of the transfer pipes were salvageable. This meant that Resolve had to quickly identify, flush, cut, raise, weld, and reroute seven major pipes in order to restore the islands fuel supply. Meanwhile, Resolve divers and ROV technicians surveyed the remaining dock’s physical infrastructure and assessed the condition of the entire berth and cargo handling systems as part of the engineering analysis required for reopening for operations.

“Resolve has since completed its work in Jamaica on June 27th and commended both PetroJam and local government officials for their cooperation and responsiveness in this time-sensitive undertaking. “

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