Future BC Hydro ratepayers will be paying excessive rates for electricity and BC Hydro financial statements have been distorted by non-standard accounting methods. These allowed the provincial government to direct payments of dividends funded by borrowing, not by real profits of the utility. But other failures and mismanagement at BC Hydro are apparent…
Limitless supply, limitless potential
You can safely bet politicians and bureaucrats use the latest computers and communication devices and regularly view high-definition smart TVs that replaced smaller screens weighing one or two hundred pounds. Despite knowing about short lifespans in the world of high-tech, decision makers have not used their modern tools to learn how energy technologies have shifted radically as well.
Falsehoods and misinformation, government specialties
Never has the government of British Columbia stood behind a larger megaproject than the Site C hydropower project. Never have more falsehoods been used to justify BC Hydro operations and the spending of tens of billions of dollars.
Campbell Clark Horgan madness
While British Columbia has policies to prevent additions of solar power to the provincial power grid, Germany has been moving forward on this form of renewable electricity. It should be noted that the centre of Germany is at a latitude similar to that of Kamloops…
In the last 28 days, British Columbia has reported half the number of new Covid-19 cases as Alberta. Yet during those four weeks, more people in BC have died from coronavirus than in AB…
BC NDP should pay attention to a Republican Senator
Long time United States Senator Charles Grassley is an Iowa Republican and chairman of the Senate Finance Committee. He joined with retiring Democratic Senator Tom Udall to state a position that current BC NDP members ought to heed.
Future generations will decry what we’re doing
Subsidizing natural gas production by ending industry payments for rights and royalties, while the government is also offering billions in electricity subsidies is indefensible. But the most serious issue is the environmental effect, on the ground and in the atmosphere.
BC is eliminating natural gas revenues
Beginning in Premier Gordon Campbell’s term as BC Premier, natural gas producers lobbied mightily for reductions in the public share of revenue derived from exploiting the natural resource. BC Liberals were receptive to the idea. Surprisingly, when the formerly centre-left New Democrats came to power, they accelerated the reductions.
BC Hydro’s dishonesty about demand growth costs us billions
Most people are educated by BC Hydro’s dishonest claims about demand growth. So, when they read a report that domestic sales have been flat for 15 years, they tend to be doubtful. Today, an In-Sights reader who works in the trades sent a message. It shows one example of modern technology affecting electric utility demand.
BC 2020 election winners
An In-Sights reader identifies the true winners in British Columbia’s October 24 election.
In a few words, over a 15 year span, total annual revenues (what we have paid as customers) have increased by 100% , over the same period and with inclusion of contract obligations the total capital deployed more than doubled but customer needs ( as represented by volume of annual sales measured in gigawatt-hours) remained unchanged.
Indifferent to existential threats
While natural gas producers now pay nothing to the BC public in comparison to earlier days, production of the fossil fuel has about doubled in the last ten years. Fossil fuels may pose an existential threat to the world, but politicians in Canada are either unaware or indifferent. Evidence suggests the latter.
Sacha Baron Cohen, on Facebook
A comedian says he speaks as his “least popular character, Sacha Baron Cohen.”
Why we’re voting
It is easy to conclude why Premier John Horgan ignored BC’s established pattern of general elections every four years. The BC NDP was riding high in the polls but a threat to that popularity was looming. A threat not known to the general public…
A conversation about BC Hydro
My conversation about BC Hydro with Chris Cook for CFUV 101.9 FM radio in Victoria. Chris regularly addresses issues not well covered by corporate media. BC Hydro’s difficulties definitely fit in that category.
North American Megadam Resistance Alliance
Before forming the Horgan Government in 2017, BC NDP was a frequent critic of how BC Liberals managed BC Hydro, our largest and most important crown corporation. NDP promised radical improvements. Those promises were empty. The only substantive changes were the appointment of Chair Ken Peterson and multi-billion dollar increases in capital spending.
Curious deal in BC’s pay-to-play economy
In early 2014, BC Hydro awarded SNC-Lavalin a contract to design, build, finance and maintain the John Hart Generating Station Replacement Project on Vancouver Island in British Columbia, Canada.
BC Hydro salaries
BC Hydro withheld its Financial Information Act Return for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2020 until September 30, the final day before failure to publish the report would have offended provincial law…
BC Government hides fossil fuel subsidies
In 2019, BC’s Auditor General concluded natural gas operators were not required by government to decommission or restore inactive well sites. Furthermore, that funds collected from operators were inadequate to cover restoration costs for wells “orphaned” by gas company bankruptcies. The Auditor General found that because of these deficiencies, the BC Government had not effectively managed the environmental and financial risks of non-operating oil and gas sites. In 2019, taxpayers were on the hook for $3 billion in cleanup costs, an amount that has grown larger in 2020…
Heads they win; tails we lose – updated
Pension managers got huge salary increases; pensioners pay a price. The fiscal year that ended March 2020 was not a rewarding one for public pension funds run by BC Investment Management Corp. The rate of return earned was less than half that of the preceding year and failed to meet client benchmarks. While current and future pension beneficiaries did poorly, the people running BCI did swimmingly well. Regardless of whether investment returns are above or below conveniently flexible benchmarks, massive salary increases are given. For pensioners, this fits the old quip, “Heads they win; tails we lose.”