Site C: Let's put the brakes on this energy boondoggle

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Martin N.

The reservoir is 88 km long and comprises 5400 hectares resulting in an average width of 613 metres. Hardly an environmental catastrophe.

NorthReport

The reality is that BC Hydro is full of shit with their energy demand projections. The CEO and maybe the entire Board needs to be dumped, and get some people in there that is going to do John Horgan's bidding after all he is now "the boss". Have people ever actually been up to the Fort St John area? You would be hard pressed to fine many BC licence plates on the vehicles as Site C is almost in its entirely an Alberta make-work project. Nothing against Alberta mind you but there are a lot of BCers that would like these jobs. And just perhaps these should be union jobs because wherever you look, if there are strong unions and their members are working, the ripple effect lifts up the entire economy, and the standard of living of the area. If the power is not needed, or these big mega-projects are no longer the way to create energy, if you don't have a unionized work force doing the work, and if BCers are not getting the work on the project, not only should we be stopping the work, but the entire project needs to be cancelled or at least moth-balled for a decade or two.

Martin N.

There is a difference between 'reality' and your ill informed opinions. My ill informed opinion is that the hydro power from Site C will provide baseload power that will displace carbon baseload from Alberta and provide hydro baseload to Alberta. This is where the BCUC's expertise will dispel ill  informed opinions.

Over the years, many of the ( thousands of) BC residents who work for oilfield contractors have switched to Alberta plates on their work trucks while still paying their taxes as BC residents. It's just easier for workers who spend more time in Alberta than BC. ICBC charges a huge surcharge for out of province coverage that is required if working. There is also a reason that the trades unions have had no success in NE BC. Basically workers make more money without the restrictions of a union contract but that is now changing. Labour standards are limiting days of work and enforcing mandatory days off. I've been around FSJ for 40 years and lived within a few k of the dam site for 15, not that it will sway the opinions of those who have never been there but have all the answers. ( not you)

jas

Martin N., as has already been explained by many, the power would be sold for less than what it costs to produce. The dam would make no profit for its first ** 70 years ** of production. And then it will need upgrades. Obviously, this is a ridiculous business plan. There is also currently no market for that power. And energy efficiency and other renewable technology will only get better.

The dam is simply not cost effective. You don't ask 3+ million taxpayers to fund a massively uneconomic mega-project so a few families can have some work. Instead, you do the math on it and make more sensible decisions. There are much better ways to meet any possible future demand. But the future of energy is likely decentralized.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
Martin N., as has already been explained by many, the power would be sold for less than what it costs to produce. The dam would make no profit for its first ** 70 years ** of production. And then it will need upgrades. Obviously, this is a ridiculous business plan. There is also currently no market for that power.

Wowzers.  Can you send it to Ontario??

Because evidently demand must exceed supply here right now, and that's why I'm paying an arm and a leg to run some light bulbs and a fridge.

I would LOVE to pay less for electricity than it costs to produce!!  And I'd even settle for just "less than I pay now".

Martin N.

Jas, perhaps you will be kind enough to read my above post, especially the part about illformed opinions. I do not believe that regurgitated anti-Site C talking points are factual. It will be interesting to understand the cost/benefit analysis from an unbiased source such as the BC Utilities Commission, whose mandate and expertise includes precisely this analysis. I think everything you have stated with such conviction is both wrong and wrongheaded but, like you, I am only voicing an illformed opinion. When Alberta retires its coal plants, will it not be better to replace that baseload with clean hydro rather than not-as-clean natural gas?

Martin N.

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Quote:
Martin N., as has already been explained by many, the power would be sold for less than what it costs to produce. The dam would make no profit for its first ** 70 years ** of production. And then it will need upgrades. Obviously, this is a ridiculous business plan. There is also currently no market for that power.

Wowzers.  Can you send it to Ontario??

Because evidently demand must exceed supply here right now, and that's why I'm paying an arm and a leg to run some light bulbs and a fridge.

I would LOVE to pay less for electricity than it costs to produce!!  And I'd even settle for just "less than I pay now".

If BC Hydro's deferral accounts and transmission system maintenance deficit, along with the government "dividend" payments are revealed by the 'new broom', so to speak, you will be more than content with your miserable existence as an Ontario Hydro debt serf.

I have grave doubts that the shiny new NDP gov will have the political courage to present the electorate with the truth of how bad a puppymaking they are in for when the BC Hydro Ponzi scheme finally collapses of its own weight. Although I do not meet Oscar Wilde's definition of a cynic in regard to the BC government's malpractices of the BC Hydro mandate, I will venture the opinion that government has misappropriated the value and left ratepayers to pay the price.

jas

Martin N. wrote:

Jas, perhaps you will be kind enough to read my above post, especially the part about illformed opinions. I do not believe that regurgitated anti-Site C talking points are factual. It will be interesting to understand the cost/benefit analysis from an unbiased source such as the BC Utilities Commission, whose mandate and expertise includes precisely this analysis. I think everything you have stated with such conviction is both wrong and wrongheaded but, like you, I am only voicing an illformed opinion. When Alberta retires its coal plants, will it not be better to replace that baseload with clean hydro rather than not-as-clean natural gas?

You want me to reread your comment (which was your opinion) about what you call ill-informed opinions. Okay. Did that. Where is your factual information?

You "don't believe" the talking points yet you provide no information that contradicts them. The financial facts of Site C were presented by BC Hydro itself -- brought to public attention by Adrian Dix during a BCUC Hydro rates review. Others have also sounded the alarm: economists David Bond, Erik Andersen, former joint review panel chair Harry Swain,  former KPMG partner Eoin Finn, former BC Hydro CEO Marc Eliesen, Dan Potts, Mike Harcourt, Rafe Mair; Norm Farrell has done extensive in-depth cost/benefit and other financial analyses, and many others. But you don't believe these "talking points" and furthermore, you think Alberta's switch from coal is going to propel hydro power prices well above projected market rates because Alberta will somehow not be able to develop any of its own energy resources for cheaper than expensive Site C power. Did I get that right?

I do agree that a BCUC review should have been done before any shovels hit the ground, but at this point I don't trust the BCUC to provide an unbiased determination. I think there's been too much time to influence people on that commission.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..site c serves more than one purpose. none of them good in my estimation. the blueberry river first nation has also had it's case rejected re: site c..yet their struggle continues.

Energy industry’s thirst for water threatens First Nations’ rights

As many as 60 large earthen structures were bulldozed into place by fossil fuel companies without first getting the required authorizations from provincial authorities.

The dams trapped water from numerous sources, including fish-bearing streams, seasonal streams, wetlands and ditches that were cleverly designed to channel their contents into the dams’ reservoirs. Natural gas companies trapped all of that freshwater and more for use in their controversial fracking operations.

Many of the dams were built on the traditional lands of the Blueberry River First Nation, which is currently suing the province, seeking compensation for the cumulative damages to its lands by government-approved industrial activities.

Three quarters of the nation’s territory lies within 250 metres of one industrial disturbance or another. The result? BRFN members can no longer practice their constitutionally protected treaty rights to hunt, trap or fish across vast swaths of their traditional territory.

Adding to worries for the BRFN and its neighbours is how all the water impounded by those dams is being used. Two years ago, Progress Energy fracked a gas well in the BRFN’s territory to the north of Fort St. John. Andrew Nikiforuk, an award-wining investigative writer, noted how Progress pumped 160,000 cubic metres of water underground at the site to liberate gas from deep below ground. Progress’s water use was nearly eight times more than that used in the typical North American frack job. Its relentless water pumping triggered a 4.6-magnitude earthquake felt 180 kilometres away....

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Mr. Magoo wrote:

I would LOVE to pay less for electricity than it costs to produce!!  And I'd even settle for just "less than I pay now".

But the kicker to the story is that residential rates will be sky rocketing. It is only the excess power that we don't need that will go to other customers for less than the cost of production. If we could sell that excess power for more than the cost of production the dam might make some economic sense but the price of power isn't worth enough to warrant the capital outlay.

Martin N.

jas wrote:

Martin N. wrote:

Jas, perhaps you will be kind enough to read my above post, especially the part about illformed opinions. I do not believe that regurgitated anti-Site C talking points are factual. It will be interesting to understand the cost/benefit analysis from an unbiased source such as the BC Utilities Commission, whose mandate and expertise includes precisely this analysis. I think everything you have stated with such conviction is both wrong and wrongheaded but, like you, I am only voicing an illformed opinion. When Alberta retires its coal plants, will it not be better to replace that baseload with clean hydro rather than not-as-clean natural gas?

You want me to reread your comment (which was your opinion) about what you call ill-informed opinions. Okay. Did that. Where is your factual information? That's the point about ill informed opinions - they don't have the facts - hence the expertise of the agency mandated to provide those facts: BCUC.

You "don't believe" the talking points yet you provide no information that contradicts them. The financial facts of Site C were presented by BC Hydro itself -- brought to public attention by Adrian Dix during a BCUC Hydro rates review. Others have also sounded the alarm: economists David Bond, Erik Andersen, former joint review panel chair Harry Swain,  former KPMG partner Eoin Finn, former BC Hydro CEO Marc Eliesen, Dan Potts, Mike Harcourt, Rafe Mair; Norm Farrell has done extensive in-depth cost/benefit and other financial analyses, and many others. But you don't believe these "talking points" and furthermore, you think Alberta's switch from coal is going to propel hydro power prices well above projected market rates because Alberta will somehow not be able to develop any of its own energy resources for cheaper than expensive Site C power. Did I get that right? No, you got it wrong. The worthies you mention are typical of non- experts who believe everyone is entitled to their opinion and, in the case of Rafe Mair at least a busybody who exemplifies having all the answers without understanding the questions. I don't trust them or especially Hydro to present an unbiased analysis.

I do agree that a BCUC review should have been done before any shovels hit the ground, but at this point I don't trust the BCUC to provide an unbiased determination. I think there's been too much time to influence people on that commission. Yeah, well you slander the worthies of the BCUC without any facts. I find it hilarious that you have faith in those that agree with you but consider the professionals of the BCUC open to persuasion. No doubt, climate scientists are principled professionals because they also agree with you. I look forward to the BCUC report before deciding whether this project is economic or not.

Martin N.

kropotkin1951 wrote:

Mr. Magoo wrote:

I would LOVE to pay less for electricity than it costs to produce!!  And I'd even settle for just "less than I pay now".

But the kicker to the story is that residential rates will be sky rocketing. It is only the excess power that we don't need that will go to other customers for less than the cost of production. If we could sell that excess power for more than the cost of production the dam might make some economic sense but the price of power isn't worth enough to warrant the capital outlay.

I see the Supremes refused both Blueberry and Prophet River leave to appeal and awarded the defendants costs. As it stands the Decision sets precedent for limits to Duty to Consult.

Martin N.

epaulo13 wrote:

..site c serves more than one purpose. none of them good in my estimation. the blueberry river first nation has also had it's case rejected re: site c..yet their struggle continues.

Energy industry’s thirst for water threatens First Nations’ rights

As many as 60 large earthen structures were bulldozed into place by fossil fuel companies without first getting the required authorizations from provincial authorities.

The dams trapped water from numerous sources, including fish-bearing streams, seasonal streams, wetlands and ditches that were cleverly designed to channel their contents into the dams’ reservoirs. Natural gas companies trapped all of that freshwater and more for use in their controversial fracking operations.

Many of the dams were built on the traditional lands of the Blueberry River First Nation, which is currently suing the province, seeking compensation for the cumulative damages to its lands by government-approved industrial activities.

Three quarters of the nation’s territory lies within 250 metres of one industrial disturbance or another. The result? BRFN members can no longer practice their constitutionally protected treaty rights to hunt, trap or fish across vast swaths of their traditional territory.

Adding to worries for the BRFN and its neighbours is how all the water impounded by those dams is being used. Two years ago, Progress Energy fracked a gas well in the BRFN’s territory to the north of Fort St. John. Andrew Nikiforuk, an award-wining investigative writer, noted how Progress pumped 160,000 cubic metres of water underground at the site to liberate gas from deep below ground. Progress’s water use was nearly eight times more than that used in the typical North American frack job. Its relentless water pumping triggered a 4.6-magnitude earthquake felt 180 kilometres away....

Do you have any sort of evidence to present for these accusations? The Blueberry band has partnerships with many of the explorers.

jas

Martin N. wrote:

No, you got it wrong. The worthies you mention are typical of non- experts who believe everyone is entitled to their opinion and, in the case of Rafe Mair at least a busybody who exemplifies having all the answers without understanding the questions. I don't trust them or especially Hydro to present an unbiased analysis.

Hmm. So economists who have worked for both government and industry are non-experts, as is the former chair of the Joint Review Panel which heard submissions on Site C (who is also an economist and has consulted for government), as are engineers, former BC Hydro executives, and some others with long-time energy or industry experience. All non-experts. Only BCUC can possibly offer an expert and unbiased opinion. Who are these amazing people on BCUC?

I sure hope you're right, Martin N. Because, if they have this same or similar expertise, they will likely come to the same conclusion as the others. Sad part is, they weren't allowed to do so earlier. And that's a decision you're apparently supporting.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Northeastern B.C. needs Indigenous consent to keep its taps flowing

By Grand Chief Stewart Phillip & Ben Parfitt

One of the most important things that all Green and New Democratic Party MLAs agreed to in reaching their historic agreement to co-operate in governing together is their “foundational” support of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

The declaration is absolutely unambiguous in stating the “urgent need” for governments to respect and promote the inherent rights of Indigenous peoples to their lands, territories and resources.

Enter the $8.8-billion Site C hydroelectric dam, a project that former premier Christy Clark vowed to push past the point of no return, but that remains years away from completion.

If ever there were a project that impacts First Nation lands and resources, and deserves to be a litmus test of the incoming government’s commitment to the declaration, Site C is it. The dam would flood more than 100 kilometres of the Peace River valley and its tributaries — resulting in irreversible losses for First Nations who have used and occupied those lands for thousands of years.

The West Moberly and Prophet River First Nations have spent years before the courts in a time-consuming battle to stop the project. But just last week, the Supreme Court of Canada rejected their final appeal. The nations argued that governments failed to properly consult them about the project and that the dam’s continued construction would irreparably harm their rights to hunt, fish and trap on their territories as covered by Treaty 8.

A task for the new B.C. government

These realities are well known to all elected MLAs, many of whom also know that Saturday marks the 12th year in a row that hundreds of people will canoe down the Peace River to protest the dam and the devastating consequences it will have on local First Nations, farming families and others. Some of those same MLAs have joined the protest paddle in years past.

The NDP and Greens say that the project will be referred to the BC Utilities Commission for a review that focuses on the economic implications of the project. But will the incoming government also consider Site C’s obvious impacts on the First Nations of Treaty 8?

And will the government look more broadly at the pace of all industrial developments in the region and their impacts on Indigenous peoples? Because, as anyone who knows this corner of the province will tell you, it looks more and more like one giant industrial sacrifice zone.....

Martin N.

jas wrote:

Martin N. wrote:

No, you got it wrong. The worthies you mention are typical of non- experts who believe everyone is entitled to their opinion and, in the case of Rafe Mair at least a busybody who exemplifies having all the answers without understanding the questions. I don't trust them or especially Hydro to present an unbiased analysis.

Hmm. So economists who have worked for both government and industry are non-experts, as is the former chair of the Joint Review Panel which heard submissions on Site C (who is also an economist and has consulted for government), as are engineers, former BC Hydro executives, and some others with long-time energy or industry experience. All non-experts. Only BCUC can possibly offer an expert and unbiased opinion. Who are these amazing people on BCUC?

I sure hope you're right, Martin N. Because, if they have this same or similar expertise, they will likely come to the same conclusion as the others. Sad part is, they weren't allowed to do so earlier. And that's a decision you're apparently supporting.

hm. Wrong. I support our democratic processes that empower agencies and commissions to fulfill their mandates in an unbiased and non- influenced manner. I do not support agenda-driven individuals or entities attempting to undermine said agencies and commissions with opinions based upon their ability to attract media recognition. I also do not support the prevailing reaction to said agencies and commissions decisions: denouncing the agency or commission as corrupted IF the decision is not in agreement with the denouncer's agenda.

Since it was a political decision to circumvent the BCUC, I do not agree with it.

Martin N.

Epaulo, your habit of ignoring any news that runs counter to your agenda and the returning much later with someone else's counter argument gives off a whiff of sneakiness. The highest court in the land has refused leave to appeal. Given the support of the SCC for numerous appeals by indigenous entities, even the worthies of your persuasions cannot dispute the legitimacy of the court's ruling and are reduced to pleading. Eventually, for the nation to survive, the realization that 'the greater good' is always counter-balanced by 'the opposing not good' must be ameliorated by a caring society.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..you don't understand my position at all martin. i report on the struggle by pointing out positions taken. sometimes that coincides with discussion here. my personal position is that settler powers are and have always brutally fucked the indigenous folk over using all kinds of tools including the scc. i see our ability, meaning both indigenous and settler folk, to have a decent and just future is dependent on that ending once and for all.   

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

How Much Will It Cost to Cover the Liberals’ Site C Gambling Debt?

The new NDP government plans to ask the BC Utilities Commission to review the economic viability of the $8.8-billion Site C hydroelectric dam. With, presumably, the project’s shutdown a possible outcome.

Incoming premier John Horgan has said he wants answers within six weeks. If the utilities commission can provide a preliminary report that quickly, the recommendations will likely focus on tangible financial matters, like the relative costs of continuing or halting work.

The ultimate decision by cabinet will also consider issues like the province’s reputation in international financial markets and the likelihood of a credit rating downgrade.

With some assumptions, it is possible to construct a ballpark estimate of the financial costs of shutting down the Site C project, or going ahead. (More detailed information is available in my paper “Options for Financing Site C.”)

And it’s clear that either option means hundreds of millions in added annual costs for BC Hydro customers, taxpayers, or both....

Martin N.

epaulo13 wrote:

..you don't understand my position at all martin. i report on the struggle by pointing out positions taken. sometimes that coincides with discussion here. my personal position is that settler powers are and have always brutally fucked the indigenous folk over using all kinds of tools including the scc. i see our ability, meaning both indigenous and settler folk, to have a decent and just future is dependent on that ending once and for all.   

Fair enough and a decent and just future a sentiment I agree with. None the less, however, is the fact that competing indigenous strategies, from hereditary/elected power struggles to historic/modern grievances give too much wiggle room for political jiggery-pokery by slippery eels like Mr. Selfie who always has a kind word and a warm hug for every supplicant. I am reminded of Junius, in his instant: (This issue) "has all the parturience of a mountain and the delivery of a mouse". 

I am somewhat alarmed that the rule of law is presumed by activists to be merely a tool of the status quo when the SCC does not agree with Indigenous positions: refusing leave to appeal Site C, thereby creating precedent for limits to ' consult and, if necessary, accommodate'. Apparently, the SCC is not a tool of the status quo when it agrees with indigenous positions.

As far as the 'settler' issue is concerned, history gives us many examples of barbaric overthrows of societies by more powerful ones but nothing about cohabitation except for the choice of assimilation or slavery. I do not believe it helpful to guilt trip the status quo into mercy rather the solution lies in all parties watering their wine.

NorthReport

BC HYDRO FISCAL 2017 TO FISCAL 2019 REVENUE REQUIREMENTS APPLICATION

 

http://www.bcpolicyperspectives.com/media/attachments/view/doc/bcuc_bc_h...

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..i'll not go down your rabbit hole martin. life is to short to waste. you say you agree with what i am saying but everything you say after that exudes something very different.

NorthReport

Do folks think the Kitimat and or Prince Rupert LNG projects will proceed without cheap energy from BC Hydro's Site C

Martin N.

epaulo13 wrote:

..i'll not go down your rabbit hole martin. life is to short to waste. you say you agree with what i am saying but everything you say after that exudes something very different.

Yet you have no compunction about digging a veritable warren of rabbit holes while daintily stepping around them yourself. The rule of law must be respected. Change is fine, anarchy is not.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Martin N. wrote:

epaulo13 wrote:

..i'll not go down your rabbit hole martin. life is to short to waste. you say you agree with what i am saying but everything you say after that exudes something very different.

Yet you have no compunction about digging a veritable warren of rabbit holes while daintily stepping around them yourself. The rule of law must be respected. Change is fine, anarchy is not.

..feel free to ignore my rabbit holes

..as to the rule of law you can educate yourself right here on babble

here

..and if you want something even more direct and active join this conversation to express your views on the rule of law re indigenous folk

here

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

 

Site C Dam Late for Key Milestones Under BC Liberals, Report Reveals

quote:

Report Cites Reasons for Site C’s Late and “At Risk” Milestones

The report lists some of the reasons for Site C’s late and “at risk” milestones. Among them are a pesky 400-metre long tension crack on an unstable Peace River embankment and delays — prior to March 31 — in awarding contracts. 

One key milestone, a new civil contract award for the dam’s generating station and spillways, was five months behind schedule by March 31. A milestone to complete a road on the north bank, where the tension crack appeared in February, was 13 months behind by the end of March.

And a contract to relocate a section of provincial highway away from the Site C flood zone — the reason Clark gave for the pressing need to evict farmers Ken and Arlene Boon from their home as scheduled on July 15 — was one month behind and deemed to be “at risk” before the election campaign kicked off in April.

The report notes that the delay, even as of March 31, “may impact the overall work schedule” for highway relocation at Cache Creek, where the Boons live.

Site C Dam Late for Key Milestones Under BC Liberals, Report Reveals https://t.co/e6dpYO9KlM #bcpoli #SiteC pic.twitter.com/3Wf53gQUKl

— DeSmog Canada (@DeSmogCanada) July 14, 2017

It also states that “plans are in place to address potential delays” in constructing Peace River diversion tunnels — the river must be diverted to allow construction of the dam structure — as a result of the tension crack. 

Yet Clark made no mention of these potential delays when she told Horgan that allowing the farmers to stay in their homes for a few more months could prevent river diversion from occurring as planned in September 2019. 

In Clark’s words, “Preliminary work undertaken on this issue by BC Hydro indicates that should river diversion not be completed as scheduled, a year-long delay would occur…” That one-year delay, Clark wrote, was expected to cost BC Hydro customers $600 million.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

quote:

Muskrat Falls, Keeyask Dam Costs Escalate

Adjustments to Site C’s spending timeframe come as the people in charge of building the other two large dams currently under construction in Canada — the Keeyask Dam on Manitoba’s Nelson River and the Muskrat Falls dam on Labrador’s Churchill River — disclose that both projects are significantly over budget.

The bill for the Muskrat Falls dam — called a “boondoggle” by the CEO in charge of building it — jumped by another $1 billion last month and is now pegged at $12.7 billion. The dam will produce roughly three-quarters of Site C’s energy.

The price tag for the Keeyask dam — which will produce 695 megawatts of power compared to Site C’s projected 1,100 megawatts — jumped by $2 billion this year, to $8.7 million. 

Muskrat Falls is expected to tack an extra $150 onto the monthly hydro bill of every household in Newfoundland and Labrador. Rate increases for Manitobans as a result of the Keeyask dam’s escalating price tag have not yet been determined, although news reports say they will be in the double digits.

Former BC Hydro CEO Marc Eliesen has called Site C a “big white elephant” that will lead to significant hydro rate increases.

 

Martin N.

epaulo13 wrote:

Martin N. wrote:

epaulo13 wrote:

..i'll not go down your rabbit hole martin. life is to short to waste. you say you agree with what i am saying but everything you say after that exudes something very different.

Yet you have no compunction about digging a veritable warren of rabbit holes while daintily stepping around them yourself. The rule of law must be respected. Change is fine, anarchy is not.

..feel free to ignore my rabbit holes

It appears very much like I am the only one on babble not ignoring your rabbit holes, epaulo. Is this the new activist mode, lazy spamming without any analysis?

..as to the rule of law you can educate yourself right here on babble

Ah, I see. Reeducation without all that pesky critical thinking cluttering up the agenda. 

here

..and if you want something even more direct and active join this conversation to express your views on the rule of law re indigenous folk

I have expressed my opinion above and will await new developments with interest. 

here

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

martin

..people aren't posting in this thread very often i don't take personal.

..what you call critical thinking, like your position on the rule of law, i see as devolution. instead of affording indigenous nations scope re rights, nation rights, you try and stuff them in a colonial box with the ssc as the arbiter.  this won't work here on babble.

..canada has adopted undrip. it is the law and site c is in violation of undrip. now canada won't accept the un definition and has embarked on a mission to redefine what it means. this is what a colonizer does. stacks the deck in it's favour, ignores or changes laws it doesn't like and in the end uses brute force when all else fails.

..this site c/pipelines/lng long time struggles certain shows when folks come together colonial powers can be pushed back.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Martin N. wrote:

The Supremes have refused to hear appeals by the Prophet River and Moberly bands of Appeals court decisions, awarding the defendants costs as well. This decision puts to rest the practice of ever evolving demands that the duty to consult and, if necessary, accommodate has not been met. While this decision will likely be met with stony denial by activists, it is as important as the Delgamukw decision.

Here is a link to the actual decision.  I disagree completely with MArtin's characterization about the impact of this case. I had to read it first to understand what it was about. It is a very narrow decision that specifically did not rule as Martin claims. Don't take my word for it read the case yourselves. 

[77] Finally, the appellants submit that the Judge made an error in finding that judicial review is not the appropriate forum to determine if Treaty 8 rights were infringed and that an action would be the more appropriate course to determine the issue of infringement of the appellants’ treaty rights (Judge’s reasons at para. 53). The appellants’ contention in this regard also fails.

https://www.bchydro.com/content/dam/BCHydro/customer-portal/documents/pr...

NorthReport

Where do folks think the proposed LNG projects in Kitimat and Prince Rupert are going to get their cheap power to fuel their plants? Well Site C of course

So if Site C is discontinued what will happen to those LNG plants?

 

https://thetyee.ca/News/2017/07/17/Site-C-Key-Milestones/

NorthReport

Clark is so full of lies she wouldn't know the truth even if it was staring her in the face

 

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Year-Long Wait for Site C Dam Budget Docs 'Disturbing': Expert

Are you curious to know the results of our Freedom of Information request for an updated budget and timeline for the $8.8 billion Site C dam project on B.C.’s Peace River?

So are we.

We were told by former energy minister Bill Bennett’s office that we would have the information on May 30, three weeks after the provincial election and nine months after we filed our request.

But then we received an e-mail from the ministry on May 24, advising us that the deadline had been extended by 45 business days. It had become apparent upon reviewing 880 pages of relevant records, said the e-mail from a government FOI specialist, “that an external consultation is required with BC Hydro.”

“This consult is essential and necessary to ensure that you receive as many records as possible, as they have authored a significant portion of the records,” stated the email. “It is therefore imperative to obtain their input to enable the disclosure of potentially harmful information.”

Now that got our attention.

The note from the energy ministry said there must also be a mandatory consultation with the Office of the Premier, as “the records touch on potentially sensitive information that may reveal Cabinet deliberations and confidences.”

That got our attention too.

But we’ll have to wait for the new deadline of August 2 — almost a year after our Freedom of Information (FOI) request was filed — to sate our curiousity, a delay that Vincent Gogolek, executive director of the B.C. Freedom of Information and Privacy Association, calls “disturbing.”

“This sounds like a public body that does not want this information to come out and they are prepared to do whatever it takes to delay this,” Gogolek told DeSmog Canada. Even worse, Gogolek said, it appears that the government has purposefully “frustrated a request and there is no sanction on them.”....

 

Rev Pesky

NorthReport wrote:

Where do folks think the proposed LNG projects in Kitimat and Prince Rupert are going to get their cheap power to fuel their plants? Well Site C of course

So if Site C is discontinued what will happen to those LNG plants?

">https://thetyee.ca/News/2017/07/17/Site-C-Key-Milestones/ 

 

In fact it is equally likely Site C electricity could be sold into Alberta, where most electricity is fossil fuel generated. Would that not be a good thing? 

​The whole argument about LNG plants using Site C electricity is a red herring. The electricity doesn't care where it goes, and it doesn't care how it is generated. Wind, solar or fossil-fuel generated electricity could be used for the same purpose.

​The fact is that hydro electrical generation is 'green', and is called for in the support documentation for the Leap Manifesto. Opposition to Site C doesn't make any 'green' sense.

NorthReport

 

We need to end all government subsidies for fossil fuels and provide them for solar, wind and tidal research

There  are just too many problems associated with the other sources of generating power Hydro Dams usually involve flooding out some people. How would you like to experience that? Also there are problems with the wild fish migrations and no fish farms are not the answer

NorthReport

The reality is under the Liberals all these run of the river projects were created locking BC Hydro into purchasing their power at exorbitant rates and screwing the citizens of BC in the process

jas

Rev Pesky wrote:
In fact it is equally likely Site C electricity could be sold into Alberta, where most electricity is fossil fuel generated. Would that not be a good thing? 

Sold at a loss, unless AB agrees to pay far above market rates. Assuming AB would even want or need it.

But why would BC go billions into debt to subsidize Alberta's energy grid?

Rev Pesky wrote:
The whole argument about LNG plants using Site C electricity is a red herring. The electricity doesn't care where it goes, and it doesn't care how it is generated. Wind, solar or fossil-fuel generated electricity could be used for the same purpose. The fact is that hydro electrical generation is 'green', and is called for in the support documentation for the Leap Manifesto. Opposition to Site C doesn't make any 'green' sense.

Site C would be a massive contributor to methane emissions, and also eliminate one of the most fertile river valleys accessible in the north, if you actually care about that. Smaller industrial run-of-river hydro electric are also not green as they wreck river ecology and impact fish populations.

But none of this matters as much as the simple fact that Site C power cannot be sold for a profit. Therefore, you don't build the dam. End of topic.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
But none of this matters as much as the simple fact that Site C power cannot be sold for a profit.

Let me just capture this moment.  And while I suppose I *would have* highlighted the salient part, I didn't even need to.

No profit.

jas

Yes, Magoo. Not sure if there's a point in your comment.

Prior to Gordon Campbell's restructuring of BC Hydro in 2005 as primarily a purchaser of private power, it was a profitable public utility that brought in provincial revenues. British Columbians enjoyed relatively low electricity rates, and surplus power was sold to other markets at a profit. Good investment for taxpayers.

Currently, the BC residential market does not require added capacity, as demand has been declining relative to population growth. This is probably due to increased consumer energy efficiencies which are only going to get better. In addition, with all the new private providers of power coming online (and being paid at well above market rates) BC Hydro currently has a surplus it cannot use. At any given time in the year, it is paying some providers not to produce power. This has led to BC Hydro posting operating deficits for the last 10 years, leading to its current $20 billion debt -- some estimate more.

The only new generation capacity Hydro was allowed to develop on its own under Gordon Campbell's new rules, was Site C dam. Site C will cost upwards of $9 billion, many predict more. As Hydro currently cannot use its surplus power and has no projected market for Site C's future power output, the new dam is not justified.

So either the BC Lib govt had some other, secret market for that power that they haven't shared with the BC public, or there is some other non-economic reason for the dam. Bankrupting BC Hydro for ultimate sell-off is one theory.

 

 

 

Rev Pesky

From jas:

Sold at a loss, unless AB agrees to pay far above market rates. Assuming AB would even want or need it.

But why would BC go billions into debt to subsidize Alberta's energy grid?

Silly me. Here I thought that those who have no problem with subsidizing wind, solar, and whatever, wouldn't have a problem with subsidizing hydro, the greenest of all electrical generation. And if subsidization happens to decrease the amount of CO2 from Alberta's fossil-fuel generated electricity, that's all to the good...or at least it is if it's subsidizing private power generation by wind farms. No 'green' I've ever heard from has been oppposed to subsidization.

Further from jas:

Site C would be a massive contributor to methane emissions, and also eliminate one of the most fertile river valleys accessible in the north, if you actually care about that..

 I'm not sure where you get your information about methane production, but if you'd care to post a source, I will read through it. The whole fertile valley thing is ridiculous. You know what they grow there now? Hay. Hay to feed cattle, to create meat, and more of that methane you're so worried about. In any case, the amount of the Peace River Valley that would be lost is tiny. To say nothing of the fact that there's no shortage of farmland in BC. I urge you, and any other interested persons to take a look at a map. 

Further from jas:

But none of this matters as much as the simple fact that Site C power cannot be sold for a profit. Therefore, you don't build the dam. End of topic.

I think what you mean is 'can't be sold for a profit right now'. But as I pointed out, greens are always ready to subsidize green electrical generation, so why is this so much different. I'll also point out that the electrical generation greens are fond of subsidizing are not base load. Site C is. That is a huge difference in terms of it's value in the marketplace.

​As far as 'we never going to need it', in 1976 the population of BC was 2.46 million. Since then it has risen to 4.7 million. The population of BC could easily double over the next fifty years. At the same time, the Columbia River Treaty has an important anniversay date in 2024. There could be some big changes that would affect the amount of electrical generation BC Hydro has available for use.

Finally, the Leap Manifesto calls for the building of 270 1300 MW hydro power plants (Site C is 1100 MW). I assume than means the people who wrote the Leap Manifesto saw hydro generation as 'green'. I also assume, because they said so, those hydro plants are necessary to achieve fossil-fuel free electrical generation. 

Pogo Pogo's picture

The reason to subsidize new sources and technologies is to create a level playing field during their incubation stages.  That is not necessary for Hydro Electric.

I do however have serious reservations about the low demand predictions. Power savings from efficiency are going to hit a wall  - you can only make things so efficient. If electric cars take off in a meaningful way, they will need power and lots of it. Not saying that Site C is needed or financially viable, just saying using history to predict the future regarding electricity demand is open to question.

NorthReport

The only reason Site C was being built presently was to supply cheap power to the LND projects. Now that they, including the one in Squamish, are, for all intense and purposed dead in the water, there is no need for Site C.

Close it down!

jas

As far as I know, the BC NDP does not follow the Leap Manifesto.

As for hay in the Peace Valley, there are some other crops there on a smaller scale. The Boons have said that with the constant prospect of expropriation farmers there have not been willing to invest in longer term crops, even over decades, as talk of a third dam comes up pretty much every decade. But the potential is vast there. Have you ever been there? There should be plenty of pictures on the internet, and there may be a map showing the area that would be submerged. If you drive down Hwy 29 you get a sense of the scale, as some signs have been posted showing the flood levels calculated for the dam.

On methane from dams:

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/methane-emissions-may-swell-f...

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/british-columbia/why-construction-o...

 

As for the economics, I can only refer you to those who have done the numbers on it. A whole series of excellent articles. And this is certainly not the extent of them.

https://in-sights.ca/category/bc-hydro/

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

New interactive map reveals largest farmland exclusion in ALR history for Site C Dam

“On April 8, 2015, with the stroke of a pen, the BC Government made the largest exclusion of land from the Agricultural Land Reserve in BC history,” said Hudson’s Hope Mayor Gwen Johansson, upon the release of a new interactive map which visualizes the enormous loss.

“Without Agricultural Land Commission review or public hearings, 3715 hectares (9180 acres) of ALR  land was removed from production for Site C dam.”

Yet the overall impact of the dam on BC’s increasingly scarce agricultural land base is even worse than that, according to two expert agrologists who presented their findings to the Joint Review Panel on the $9 Billion proposed project.

In all, the Site C would impact 31,528 acres of class 1-7 farmland, roughly half of which lies “within the project’s flood, stability and landslide-generated wave impact lines,” the former president of the BC Institute of Agrologists, Dr. Wendy Holm, told the 3-member panel last year. The other half will be permanently lost beneath the reservoir and access roads. Of the total land impacted and compromised, over 8,300 acres  are class 1 and 2 soils – making it some the best farmland in the country.

“The Peace River Valley has extraordinarily high value for agriculture,” soil scientist Evelyn Wolterson added.

It is our opinion that the public interest is better served [by] agriculture and other uses for this valley, rather than a hundred years of power production…Power has other alternatives; agriculture doesn’t.

Mayor Johansson agrees, especially in light of the dire drought conditions now plaguing California, on which BC depends heavily for imported produce. In fact, BC currently produces far less than half the food it consumes, according to the Ministry of Agriculture....

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

 presented their findings to the Joint Review Panel 

quote:

The Peace Valley’s surprisingly “extraordinary” land

The panel seemed genuinely interested to learn from Holm and Wolterson about the special properties of the valley that make it so productive agriculturally.

For starters, the Peace River’s largely east-west orientation means the valley gets more sun, thus experiencing longer growing days and seasons than other land that far north. “The best farmland in BC is in the southern valleys,” Wolterson told the panel. “The notable exception is the Peace River Valley.”

Other factors like lower wind speeds, excellent Spring moisture, and a longer frost-free period mean, counterintuitively, that “crop yield goes up as you go from the south to the north,” Wolterson explained.

These are all elements of this valley that make it absolutely unique…not only in the region but in all of British Columbia, and perhaps Western Canada.

Even a BC Hydro representative acknowledged to the panel in an earlier presentation Tuesday, “Our assessment certainly accepts that this is highly capable land and a favourable climate.” If anything, he conceded, the climate has improved since the last major study conducted by BC Hydro 30 years ago.

Yet throughout the project proponent’s 15,000-page report, “flawed data is leading to faulty conclusions,” Wolterson asserts.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..bc hydro is/was one of bc's jewels. until the liberals began to plunder it. however difficult it would be, i believe that it can return to what it once was. but not with site c...

BC Hydro’s real debt has grown 1337% under Liberals…Shouldn’t someone call the cops? 

quote:

Liberals raise Hydro’s obligations by $74 Billion

The hard fact is that under the Liberals, BC Hydro’s real debt – including all its obligations – in constant dollars has increased by 1,337%, from $6 billion in 2005 to $80.2 billion today. This total comes from Hydro’s most recent annual report (2016) and is made up by the following three categories:

  1. Regulatory (Deferral) Accounts: $5.9 Billion
  2. Long Term Debt: $18 Billion
  3. Long Term Private Power (IPP) Contracts: $56.3 Billion

It must be noted that since the Liberal reign began in 2001, Hydro hasn’t been hit by a depression, a burst dam, a substantial labour dispute, a diminution of its customer base, nor any other calamity that could explain this huge increase in debt. In fact, according to Premier Clark and the brains of the outfit, Deputy Dreamer, Rich Coleman, thanks to Liberal policies of perfection, we had absolutely Sooper-Dooper times. Just how their largest trust from the people, BC Hydro, went $74 billion in the goo and de facto bankruptcy on their watch simply isn’t dealt with, on the the theory that if no one heard the tree fall in the forest, it never happened.

During this period, Hydro has been borrowing large sums to pay yearly dividends to the Minister of Finance for his annual cooking of the books to make it appear that BC has a balanced budget, a noteworthy piece of fiction in a government noted for fiscal legerdemain.

In fact, this has been a government that doesn’t just employ puffery or exaggeration, it lies through its teeth, as if lying was its default position. I raise this because in a moment I’m going to talk about a criminal investigation being required and in such matters, believability is a critical factor and I tell you plainly that neither Clark nor Coleman can demand to be accepted as truthful people on their public record.

Unforeseen catastrophes aside, there are only three possible answers as to how Hydro could lose all this money: grossly negligent management, money being wrongly spent, or money exerting undue influence on decision makers....

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..from 447

quote:

Losing 72 cents on the dollar

Citizens for Public Power member and SFU professor John Calvert explained it like so:

 B.C. Hydro announced the outcome of its 2006 tender call for electricity from private energy developers. The results were startling. Not only had B.C. Hydro agreed to buy three times the power requested in the tender, it had done so at locked-in prices far above projected market rates…

…The core of that policy was laid out in the 2002 Energy Plan, which prevents B.C. Hydro from building new generation assets, and transforms the Crown corporation from a generator of publicly-owned electricity to a purchaser of energy from the private sector.

The rationale for this change is hard to fathom. The old policy worked very well. By generating its own power, B.C. Hydro ensured that ratepayers enjoyed, on average, the second lowest electricity prices in North America. This is because prices were based on the historic cost of production, not the current energy market price…

 

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..last submission then i'll back off. :)

Why does BC Hydro get their demand forecasts so wrong?

quote:

Forecasting errors are irrelevant if no one takes notice of the values. Unfortunately, your government, BC Hydro Board and senior executives saw these forecasted needs as their license to build, contract, borrow and spend, big-time. Using current cost numbers for the proposed dam on the Peace River, Site C, each annual GWhr of error was/is the same as borrowing/contracting for $2+ million.

The amount of borrowing error in the 2003 forecast was about $14 billion at Fiscal 2013.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
As far as I know, the BC NDP does not follow the Leap Manifesto.

They may not have endorsed it, and they may not claim "this guides our hand on the tiller", but if they do something that Leap calls for, should we argue against it because they're "not all in" or whatever?

If YOU support the Leap Manifesto then YOU tell us what's wrong with building the first of those 270 hydroelectrict projects.  And if you're going to say "profit" again, then this time quote from Leap where they talk about turning a profit.

NorthReport

Dams are so passé!

Time for major solar wind and tidal power projects so BC can at least try and pretend we are moving towards the 21st century as opposed to the 19th

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