BC Hydro waited until the last day permitted by legislation to issue its quarterly report for the period ended June 30, 2018.
It reports the utility’s service plan for fiscal 2019 forecasts “average market energy prices of US $21.43/MWh” and “a Canadian to US dollar exchange rate of US $0.8088.”
So, in the current year, BC Hydro expects to export electricity for a Canadian dollar price of 2.65¢ per kilowatt-hour. Compare that to the 9.14¢ per KWh paid independent power producers in the fiscal year ended March, 2018, an amount 28% higher than five years before. Bank of Canada puts inflation at 7% and the average market price barely changed between FY 2013 and FY 2018.
The June 2018 quarterly report reveals the utility purchased 5% more gigawatt hours from independent power producers (IPPs) than in the same period a year earlier.
Sales of electricity were down 1.5% from sales in the first quarter a year before.
That means the BC Hydro is buying private power it does not need and hoping to recover roughly 30% of its cost on export markets.
Having proven she is unable to bring BC Hydro under control, Energy Minister Michelle Mungall should resign. If she does not, Premier Horgan should fire her and the entire board of directors.
September 14, Quebec company Innergex Renewable Energy Inc. celebrated official opening of two power projects that generate electricity from waters flowing in the Pemberton Valley. From these, Innergex has 40-year contracts to sell power to BC Hydro. That will cost ratepayers over $50 million a year, although about $15 million should be recovered through export sales.
Altagas, a company favoured by Christy Clark, scored 60 year contracts for their operations.
The IPP industry convinced BC Hydro that long term inflation-protected contracts are needed for this surplus power. They haven’t been as successful in convincing customers elsewhere in the world. This chart contains information from Innergex about the terms of contracts they hold in other jurisdictions.