Awash in power at premium prices

Increasing IPP purchases and flat demand for power obviously means that BC Hydro creates less power to meet demand by its users in BC. However, massive spending means the utility employs more than triple the assets to produce one gigawatt hour of electricity than it did a dozen years ago. This is bad policy not explained by mere incompetence of management. We must conclude that the Liberal Government is directing the public utility, either to cripple it or to deliver billions of dollars to friends and supporters.

Log exports updated

BC is exporting substantially more unprocessed raw lags by volume but recording – per exporters’ reports, at least – little more than half the unit value realized in the 1990s. The volume of exported raw logs during Christy Clark’s tenure is 567% of what was experienced in ten years of NDP administration. BC jobs in forestry and support activities have declined by nearly one-half.

Indeed, power does corrupt

Throughout time, elites have commanded portions of national economies that are disproportionate to their numbers within the populations. Of course, that is an inevitable result of different capabilities, opportunities, risk tolerance, dedication and fortune. The distribution of wealth and influence will never be equal but if the imbalance grows too large, particularly if opportunities are class-restricted, a civil society will not function. The elites may hold dominance for a period through force but history demonstrates that order will disintegrate in a society of severe inequality.

Looting W.A.C. Bennett’s legacy

Opponents of Liberal power policy assume that, beyond grabbing the profits to be made flipping IPP contracts, Liberal operatives aimed to cripple BC Hydro to make its privatization palatable. The guiding parties decided they could gain more another way. There was no need to privatize Hydro’s assets and liabilities. Instead, they privatized its profits and left Hydro and the public with all the financial risks…

What’s another billion or twenty?

Moody’s Investors Service issued a warning this week about rising debt at B.C. Hydro. In the first six months of fiscal year 2017, term debt increased $1.3 billion to $19.5 billion. That number is up $7.8 billion during Christy Clark’s time as Premier, which is an increase larger than the total term debt incurred in the utility’s first 48 years of operation. Of course, debt has been rising quickly despite current consumption being the lowest in the preceding 12 years.

Swag, the Liberal raison d’être

Swag is what British Columbia’s Liberal Party is about. Whether it’s cash-for-access, pay-to-play, quango patronage or tried and true scratch-my-back contracting, Liberals are practiced at converting public wealth to private. BC Hydro is an example. The utility paid private power producers over $9 billion between 2003 and 2016. But, that’s only the start.

Public wealth, private benefit

People who are not profiting – or expecting to profit – from corruption in British Columbia’s political arena, should understand. We all pay. We pay dearly and inescapably. Tens of billions of dollars the Clark gang is gifting to private power producers and billions more paid and payable to foreign owned gas producers might provide for an effective court system, better public education, healthcare, small business support and other citizen priorities.

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