BC Hydro

Site C, again

A while ago, I clipped a news item with intention of reflecting on how these words, with name changes, would apply to British Columbia. Unfortunately, I did not note the author’s name and now cannot locate it. Nevertheless, these are worthy of consideration.

Cathy Dunderdale makes me sick! Had she known about the risks she would never have endorsed Muskrat Falls.

[Cathy Dunderdale] was the premier of the province at the time of sanctioning and there were a lot of people warning the government that there were serious issues with the project.

Her response was always the same, “How can anyone question the experts at Nalcor?”

It was her duty, as premier, to do just that before she committed billions of our dollars to the mega project. Every elected official in her government also had a duty and responsibility to protect the interests of this province.

Ignorance is not an excuse.

They all chose to endorse Muskrat Falls blindly, as it turns out, rather than bringing in outside experts for a “cold eyes” scrutiny.

They chose to do the opposite, they decided to ignore the recommendations of the Joint Review Panel and even worse, to dismiss the Public Utilities Board.

Danny William’s government and all subsequent governments right up to the present time need to take their share of responsibility for this boondoggle. The buck has to stop somewhere and someone has to be held accountable.

Ignorance should not be an excuse, nor should stupidity.

They were in power to protect the citizens and best interests of this province and they failed us miserably. Now it’s time to take ownership of their mistake, passing the buck just doesn’t cut it!

Site C did not proceed through ignorance and stupidity. It was a mean spirited and carefully designed choice to favour special economic and political interests above all others.

The province of British Columbia and BC Hydro lied about electricity demand and need for the $11 billion Site C project near Fort St. John. They lied about the cost of alternatives. They lied about agricultural value of 80 kilometres of Peace River valley floor that will be inundated. They lied about cultural significance of lands settled by indigenous people for thousands of years.

They hide the names of companies given huge no-bid contracts and they hide the names of people awarding lucrative deals. The Narwhal reports:

BC Hydro has gone to court to avoid revealing the names of public employees who decide which companies are awarded lucrative Site C project contracts during construction of the $10.7 billion hydro dam.

Secrecy and corruption go hand in hand.

Residential and small business ratepayers were viewed as powerless consumers who, with sufficient advertising and mistruths, could be convinced that Site C was appropriate and inevitable, even a wise choice.

The net effect is to remove money from many pockets and deposit it into the pockets of a few. BC citizens are played for suckers, again.

Categories: BC Hydro, Site C

35 replies »

  1. .. what is the current status quo re Site C and the Christy Clark Memorial Reservoir? Are they still trying to jam that through despite all obstacles, including land slippage, fiduciary failure & the current idiocy of trying to jam all sorts lf pipelines, dilbit and natural gas.. across BC to ‘tidewater’ the alternative politalk name for the British Columbia marine coast and waters. My understanding is the whole enterprise was a giveaway to Big Energy.. presumably for private profit of the few and political donorship monies. I follow the travesty carefully, from an environmental standpoint, cultural question, political ‘fluckery’ viewpoint. and its a pretty clear as a huge microcosm.. of the same nonsense at al provincial levels and at the federal level. It just reminds me what length such political animal scumbags will go to.. for power, money and astonishing wealth.. I often suspect the diehard ‘enablers’ and backroom operators of these corrupted Parties and Governments.. would hire vicious thugs.. to ‘encourage’ silence.. Transparency eh.. ? Right …

    Liked by 1 person

    • Let’s start to name and shame – Gwyn Morgan, former SNC-Lavalin (corruption charges made against SNC); Don Wright – BC government, Liberal appointee and NDP retainee. Next?

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  2. BC Hydro’s top executives are now running the Province. They are warming their hands in the pockets of the B.C. taxpayer. It is as if Homer Simpson or (“BC Hydro Dave”) as the advertisement tells us) is the representative for B.C. Hydro commercials.
    We also have a three-headed spokesman for Hydro: Horgan, Wilkinson, Weaver. … 4 if one counts B.C. Hydro “Dave”.

    On the news today, we are being told that there will an 8% boost in electricity usage as millions of people will be heating frozen piazzas while watching the Super Bowl. Where do they get these statistics? Are B.C. Hydro accountants part of the Creative Writing team?

    How about the moronic joke of “How many businesses does it take to change their bottom line?” asks the enlightened Dave.

    Perhaps Dave should be asking, “How many lawyers does it take to have B.C. Hydro executives tell the truth about Hydro deferred accounting? How about explainIng the massive debt, ruined environment and mercury poisoning behind the dam?

    No one is above the law.
    Andrew Wilkinson indicated that 3 MLA’s will not be running in the next election. Rich Coleman says he is “too busy to appear before the Courts regarding, Timberwest, money laundering, Casinos, real estate etc.” He also supported the sale of B.C. Rail and construction of the Site C Dam.

    The resigning Liberals and friends should be before the Courts … before they are allowed to claim their pensions. Maybe Daryl Plecas will be turning off the lights at the B.C. Legislature.

    Liked by 4 people

  3. Years ago a fella I knew had a standard saying about company’s in general. Question; “What’s another name for a successful business?” Answer; “A future failure”. This certainly applies to BC Hydro.

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    • B.c. hydro was created to ensure a sufficient,reliable power supply to as much of b.c. as possible. Along the way, many violations of citizens rights were comitted,and many lies were told.
      But in the main,that goal was acheived.
      If a crown corporation acheives its purpose and covers its costs,ITS WORKING FINE.
      Pre hydro,there was a mess of-drum roll-ipps. Who were notorious for arbitrary bill increases,disconnections,failures to provide,dam fails(mt polley,anyone?)and a staunch refusal to acknowledge any regulation.
      B.c. hydro,for my lifetime,provided the most reliable,and almost the cheapest power on this continent,at no cost to the public purse. In fact,AFTER their running costs,and reserves were covered,the surplus was remitted TO the public purse,to help pay for all the nice stuff we seem to have a ‘right’ to.
      Gordo changed all that. Like a neighborhood extortionist,he insisted on upfront ‘protection money’,and gave orders to buy from these suppliers,at whatever they wanted to charge.
      Sounds like the good old mafia restaurant scam, only approved suppliers,linen service,here,make a job for my buddies kid.
      He also ,by appointing various minders,stacked the upper mgmnt with fellow travellers on the road to personal wealth, to stamp out any pesky notions of duty to the public.
      In short,all the sighns of organised corruption. And for 16 years we drank the koolaid.
      Are we smarter now? Stay tuned.

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  4. BC Hydro and the provincial government should be supporting these contracting professionals and giving them public awards for their excellence. Instead they are hidden in darkness. There is a message there for the public.

    BTW, I believe the article Norm quotes from is on the Labrador Land Protectors Facebook page.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I don’t get a warm fuzzy feeling when multi billion dollar contracts are awarded without a bid process.
    OR when the govt agency awarding the contract tries to crush any access to information by the public.
    who ARE these people that can squander BILLIONS in taxpayer dollars and walk off into the sunset with an obscene, garanteed taxpayer funded pension.
    An earthen Dam, built on muck,in the middle of a seismically active area, where fracking continues to occur……
    What could possibly go wrong?
    An 11 billion dollar Vale tailings pond?

    If Satan himself ran for office on one promise.
    “ANY politician or govt employee found guilty of fiscal impropriety during their tenure in govt…they immediately forfeit their pension for acting in bad faith”

    I would vote for him.

    And if Satan reneged on his promise….what the hell, he’s no different than the current bobblehead dolls infesting the Leg.

    Liked by 3 people

  6. According to a BC Hydro posting in October of 2018 they have 124 IPPs contracted to produce 21,429 GW hrs per year. That is about 43% of the 50,000 GWhrs BC residents, businesses and heavy industrial customers have bought each year for the last decade or so. We all know that the IPP contracts provide payments to producers at $90 per MWhr and more.

    Before there were IPP secret contracts the production from legacy dams and the backup gas generation plant delivered 50,000 GWhrs per year for a cost of less than $40 per MWhr. We signed on to NERC supposedly so we could not just sell into western North America but also buy when there was a need. So far all I can see is BC Hydro using only the sell side of the market suggesting that the deal is deliberately one sided. We are being volunteered to provide inexpensive electricity for others.

    If one thinks back to 2003/4 the then premier was public with the idea of privatising BC Hydro, the idea met with a ground swell of public outrage.

    We should be seeing the same outrage today now that 43% of our in province needs are being met by private providers leaving the much less expensive electricity to be sold at maybe $35 per MWhr to folks outside BC or used as a subsidy to miners and the LNG industry.

    Those secret IPP contracts represent about $60 billion of contractual obligations BC Hydro customers are forced to pay over contract life. Adding insult to injury BC Hydro customers are not gaining any ownership from these payments so at the end of these contracts all IPPs will own a fully paid for asset that should have residual value. A pretty good financial plan for the few that is being paid for by the many.

    In the world of bonds there is the term “toxic debt” , used to describe debt that was taken on by people who over stepped their authority or used fraud to have the debt get issued. We should now be talking about “toxic contracts” where the contracts are signed by people with no authority or because of bribery. SNC Lavalin is in the news today for that kind of behaviour and of course they are now saying they are a reformed organisation. I think the old saying applies; fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me. We in BC are a way past twice with SNC L.

    Liked by 5 people

  7. Erik, it was bad enough when I thought it was 25% of our power coming from IPPs — despite no increase in demand since when Hydro could produce all of its own power (with some +/- trading on the spot market.)

    I’m surprised to now learn that we are at 43% supplied by IPPs. (Does Norm agree on that number?)

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    • According to the govt, the $10 billion Site C dam was ‘needed’ to provide back up capacity for the $60 billion in intermittent IPP power that BC Hydro contracted.

      BC Hydro will pay and pay, its debt will continue to grow, and hydro rates will continue to skyrocket.

      Natural gas-burning Burrard Thermal could have been used as a backup for IPP power, but it emits GHG so they’re not supposed to use it.

      But apparently it’s ok to export LNG, which is compressed natural gas……

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  8. Just came up with a clincher to scrap Site C–the retard government neglected to take notice of the fact that it is situated directly on one of BC’s major fault lines–the Rocky Mountain Trench Fault. Google “Where Terranes Collide.”

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    • Uh oh .
      You cant use politically incorrect terms like “retard”.
      .The pc police will arrest you.
      Just say “corrupt” we’ll take it from there.
      But then again.
      Even if corruption is assumed and then proven in Court…No politician will spend a day in jail……..

      Where is the trough these days so I can gorge myself as well?.

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  9. It seems that the NDP government is a willing accomplice with the site C sham, but they are also a willing accomplice with the $5 billion+ Broadway SkyTrain and Surrey SkyTrain scams as well.

    ” Building with SkyTrain is a mean spirited and carefully designed choice to favour special economic and political interests above all others. ”

    Who is running the province?

    Bring me back the NDP of old, because this lot is as bent as an used nail.

    Liked by 2 people

    • The NDP of old, yes, well that ship has sailed and many who control the party today have yet to do an “honest day’s work” as we used to say. It reminds me of a Knowledge network series, about a fictional P.M. of Denmark. The leader of their Labour party goes off and as he leaves, he says, he is the last of the party who actually worked and shows the P.M. his tattoo which iron workers in his plant all had. That is what more or less happened to the NDP. It once was made up by people who actually worked. Then came along the younger ones, who are older now, many university educated never having actually worked in the real world. They were professional non profits, professional advisors, professional aides, professional politicians. they are out of touch and it shows.

      If we continue as is, we will be much like British politicians, regardless of party, they all went to the same “public” schools and universities.

      Sky train to U.B.C. give me a break. That is so they can open the west side of Vancouver to development. Expect to see the high rises go up after the completion of it. During the current down turn of prices in Vancouver, expect many developers to start buying for the future. The offers will most likely be quiet, they buy, pay cash and the vendor gets to remain in the house for 5 to 10 yrs for a nominal fee. Those working class people who need to commute from Langley and points east, they’re still spending a fortune on gas and if they start taxing roads it will be very expensive. But with a ski train to U.B.C. expect to see nice developments, densification, etc. all for multi million dollar condos. Just have a look at New York City and their real estate. One condo has just had a contract written for it at over $200M. B.C. with its climate, location, etc. isn’t far behind.

      Liked by 1 person

    • I think theyre doing what they can,and picking their battles. Cant fight in all directions,all at once all the time.
      These grifters,in all areas,have had 16 years to dig in like tapeworms.
      While its possible to cure tapeworms with a flamethrower,and very tempting, the results are likely to (heh) backfire.
      Leaving the liberals to once again grab the wheel,and point us off the cliff again.

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  10. BC’s CleanBC plan wants us to transition from heating with natural gas to electricity.
    Site C will cause hydro rates to climb even faster than they already are.
    We have natural gas but it is to be exported as LNG, not for us to use.
    We can ponder that as temps in BC interior drop to -30 C tonight.

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    • So right. The NDP are nothing more than a special interest party, which special interest is money.

      The speculation tax is a farce and they will come to grief with it. I am 63 and i am helping may people much older to register. They have no computers and are more or less common folk who worked all their lives for a house and they want to die in it. The upset this tax has caused is unforgivable and I will go so far to say the NDP are hurting O.A.P. types with worry and such.

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    • heat with electricity? right. I may be old but I’m not stupid and I know I can heat for less with gas than electricity. There is always heating with wood, which on Vancouver island is still cheap, for some.

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  11. Well how does one stop the buck from being passed around still? They still have another $ 8 billion to squander with certain cost overruns.
    What happens now with Muskrat Falls. Oops we sorry? We did have your interests at heart kind of approach.
    How are they going to take ownership of their mistake?
    I like the idea if caught in the misuse of public funds by using deceit this is viewed as a serious breach of the public’s trust.
    Secrecy protects our innocent government employees for abuse is the reason given by Hydro.

    Any dealings I’ve had with the public service has been wonderful, and I think whistleblower legislation is just nonsense.
    One thinks of Edward Snowden now confined to live in Russia, or Julian Assange holed up in the Ecuadorian Embassy, and viewed as enemies of the State.
    The Civil Rights movement was certainly not inspired by the Government.
    Nor was any improvement in our human rights.
    Its always been just us, and not those seeking the dream of entitlement
    So I’m still wondering will there be an Independent Audit of the Legislature, and who decides what is to be investigated?
    The Government who is itself the subject of the investigation determines who is to be questioned?
    Its like living in a cartoon train wreck where nothing is real any longer.
    ..

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Yes Secrecy and Corruption go Hand in Hand. This torch is now being carried by the hand of the Horgan government passed on by the previous Clark crime family. The status quo continues. And those legislature gravy train snorters runs across party lines. Does Claire Trevana’s name ring a bell.

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  13. A recent tweet from Vaughn Palmer:

    “#bcpoli BC Hydro deferral accounts. When New Democrats left office in 2001, there was one (1) account with $200 million in deferrals. BC Liberals left behind 29 accounts and more than $5 billion in deferrals.”

    I wonder what the BC Hydro IPP power purchases obligation was in 2001 versus today?

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Dear Millenials,

    Thanks to the BC Liberals, even if you could afford a home in Vancouver, which you can’t, the hydro rates you’ll pay will be ridiculously high:

    “B.C. Hydro will need to recover the balance through future rate increases, which will have a negative impact on intergenerational equity,” she writes in a passage with far-reaching implications for millennials and even younger ratepayers.”

    https://vancouversun.com/opinion/columnists/vaughn-palmer-hydros-deferrals-problem-about-to-become-a-political-problem

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  15. i don’t even believe Site C would be needed for the progress of automobile electrification. not in the forseeable future or never. We could be creating tons of long term and permanent jobs in the tech sector infrastructure building, related to solar, wind, and even thermal. Why not upgrades on existing dams too. I think Site C as has been talked about in depth is nothing but a temporary special interest cash cow. The IPPs and Hydro don’t care about ratepayers interests, environmental interests, First Nation’s interests or anyones interests as long as the cash bar is open, and it don’t even matter what government is in power, even if it was the devil. Is Horgan just another Gumby figure in the big picture of movers and shakers and influencer’s.

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  16. the crooked corrupt federal and crooked corrupt provincial govt working hand in hand issueing all the permits needed to carry with site c totally unhindered-the crooked corrupt ndp govt of bc is taking orders from the powers to be running site c and the project will carry on thru crooked corrupt court decisions in favor of the crooked corrupt corporations and political greed running our province-and they expect us to sit back and pay for there corruptness-all involved with site c should be held crimminally accountable for the wanton destruction of the peace river valley and the wildlife habitat that has and will be destroyed all for crooked corrupt corporate and political gain-mark meiers-charlie lake bc

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    • You said something that really stands out, that i agree with completely as i do with your whole post and that is the project will carry on thru crooked court decisions.

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  17. I was tongue twisted saying corrupt, crooked ,courts, corps too fast , after just reading an article in the Narwhal about the Liberals paying in secret without an open bidding process $500,000 to a private investigator firm to spy on the protesters of the Peace River Dam as Hydro used their information to sue these people, our citizens. I’m sure I got this right.
    Its so unbelievable.
    With this kind of information coming out now Site C could be cancelled , as the instigators of this project will be on the run out of fear for the social outrage just begining. Imagine having these scoundrels suddenly having to come out of the closet under this glaring public scrutiny?
    Expensive doesn’t describe it.
    Now an Independent Audit of the Legislature?
    Zowie.
    In the background making up the scenery of this possible theatre act is Stats Canada saying only 20% of Canadians say they respect our political institutions, and voter turnout has been on the decline since the 1990”s.
    We can only hope Democracy will be jump started after these revelations.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. If everything is made secret, then the public is disengaged from the participating in democracy.
    As in “Why bother to vote”.
    Where does one draw the line between BCHydro, and the Liberal Party? I see many Liberal cabinet ministers are on the board of the Independent Power Producers.
    Who is watching over this blurred line which has been crossed?
    The Liberals looted the coffers of ICBC as well for their politics.
    Where is the law on this?
    If no distinction is made between the Liberal Party’s aims, and the aims of BC Hyrdo isn’t this a corruption?

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  19. site c corruption starts with the harper federal govt changing the federal navagable wares act – the federal fisheries act and to some extent the federal migratory bird act to allow equipment to walk in the peace river disrupting the water-fish and migratory birds with no concequences-all this was done quietly behind closed doors -trudeau carried on with this train of thought-so much for protecting canada -much less beautiful bc-the crooked corrupt clark liberal govt went further behind closed doors and quietly removed all the agricultural land in the aglr-(agricutural land reserve)-from the aglr so site c could carry on completly unhindered-of course all federal and provincial people involved in this process were told to keep their mouths shut about all these underhanded dealings-imagine their jobs were at stake-once the federal govt issued the federal permits to proceed with site c on the bassis of their crooked changed laws the shoo- in was set in motion-you can bet your bottom dollar all the crooked corrupt corporations did their share of lobbing and donating to the cause that would put billions of dollars into their private coffers-this is only the tip of the iceberg and the corruption carries on–mark meiers-charlie lake bc

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  20. Mark Meiers: punctuation, please — and paragraph breaks. (If you’re typing on a phone, you can make a paragraph break by holding the shift key, then pressing the return key.)

    You probably have something important for us to read and understand — but I won’t dive into your sea of words if I know I can’t come up for air till it’s over.

    I’ve got to think I’m not alone.

    Liked by 1 person

  21. snc lavalin is the dirt works engineering firm involved in this crooked corrupt mess-aciona from spain and samsung from korea are the major contractors-(dubbed peace river hydro partners)-in this crooked corrupt mess-plus a whole pile of other contractors with their filthy litte fingers in the public money pot compliments of the local ndp govt of the day and bc hydro-under the federal govt migratory birds act after the birds left the nest bc hydro was allowed to destroy all nesting sites and habitat so returning birds in the spring would have no place to nest-this included some dozen bald and golden eagle nests that were 40++ years old–wildlife destruction at its deplorable finest and no one says a word for fear and intimidation by bc hydro and its private investigation firm-what was there name in the narwal article-they got paid 500,000 for this treachery–mark meiers

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  22. i have switched all my lights out for leds in the house- shop-yard- barn and all over the ranch for a 75 plus % in power savings-the lights are so good i have brought a container in from overseas-if bc hydro supplied everyone in bc with good quality led lights and the power savings across bc was 75% we would have 75% more power as excess and bc hydro would tumble-bc hydro is in the market to sell not to save so this will never be done-there would never be a need for another dam and total destruction of the peace river valley and all the crooked corruption would fall by the wayside–mark meiers

    Like

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