Canadian Biomass Magazine


WPAC Pre-Conference Workshop: Safety

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September 18, 2023

It’s been 25 years since the first shipment of wood pellets left Canada. Today our sector is a global powerhouse when it comes to clean, responsible and renewable energy and a critical solution in the fight against climate change. With global demand comes increased production and renewed focus on the safety of our workers.

Join us at this full-day workshop on September 18 at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa as we discuss and explore ways to ensure that safety is keeping up with the pace of industry. One such way is the enhanced adoption of process safety management (PSM), with a focus on two critical drivers: inherently safer design (ISD) and safety culture.

Together we will identify key issues, trends and opportunities to strengthen safety across our sector.  Your insight will provide an important foundation for the sector’s safety initiatives both short-term and for years to come.

Upon completion of this workshop, participants should be able to:

  • explain why inherently safer design is typically more effective than other levels in the hierarchy of controls (add-on safety devices and procedural safety measures)
  • identify the key features of an effective safety culture
  • incorporate inherently safer design principles and safety culture considerations in a safety management system appropriate for high-hazard industries
  • provide recommendations on effective ways to share and communicate new safety initiatives, tools and learnings across their organization and sector.

The session will be facilitated by Dr. Paul Amyotte, P.Eng., Distinguished Research Professor and Professor of Chemical Engineering at Dalhousie University and supported by safety experts and leaders across the Canadian pellet sector. Participants will receive a certificate of completion for continuing education.



9:00 am – 9:10 am        Opening Remarks: Julie Griffiths, Shaw Renewables and Chair of WPAC Safety Committee

9:10 am – 9:40 am        Session: Evolution of Process Safety Management in High-Hazard Industries, Dr. Paul Amyotte, P.Eng., Dalhousie University

9:40 am – 10:20 am      Session: Operations Safety Panel – PSM and ISD

10:20 am – 10:40 am     Coffee Break

10:40 am – 12:10 pm    Session: Mini ISD Workshop, Kayleigh Rayner Brown, MASc, P.Eng., Obex Risk Ltd.; Bill Laturnus, BC Forest Safety Council; Dr. Paul Amyotte, P.Eng., Dalhousie University

12:10 pm – 12:55 pm    Lunch

12:55 pm – 1:10 pm      Session: Introduction to Safety Culture, Dr. Paul Amyotte, P.Eng., Dalhousie University

1:10 pm – 1:40 pm        Session: Operations Safety Panel – Safety Culture and Communications, Bill Laturnus, BC Forest Safety Council; Karen Brandt, Brandt Strategy Inc.; Julie Griffiths, Shaw Renewables

1:40 pm – 3:10 pm        Session: Safety Culture – Dr. Paul Amyotte, P.Eng., Dalhousie University; Kayleigh Rayner Brown, MASc, P.Eng., Obex Risk Ltd.

3:10 pm – 3:30 pm        Coffee Break

3:30 pm – 3:45 pm        Session: Safety Resources – Fahimeh Yazdan Panah, PhD, P.Eng., WPAC

3:45 pm – 3:50 pm        Closing Remarks, Julie Griffiths


Registration fee: $150 + tax and service charge

Register now to guarantee your space!

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