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The response of the private power industry (IPPs) to the recently released study on BC Hydro is goofy even against other barmy statements they make.

The defence against the charge that their power costs many times what BC Hydro can make it for themselves is that BC Hydro has paid for its facilities long ago so doesn’t have any capital costs whereas IPPs must build new plants.

Of course that’s true – AND THAT’S THE WHOLE POINT!!!

Why should BC Hydro (that’s us folks) pay huge rates to cover the construction of private dams when they can get the power from their own system at a fraction of the cost? To pay a triple, quadruple bonus to IPPs so they can build power plants that ruin our rivers and supply us with hugely dear power is plain and simply nuts – yet that’s what the Campbell/Clark Government has been doing for 10 years!

Repeat after me – Vaughn Palmer and Mike Smyth too please: “We have never needed IPPS, don’t need them now and won’t need them in the foreseeable future.”

Independent experts make it clear that with reasonable conservation, upgrade of current facilities, new generators on flood control dams and taking the Columbia River Treaty power back that we currently sell, puts us in a position that no new power will be needed for decades.

My Liberal colleague on our Monday morning Political Panel said today, obviously thinking this was in the government’s favour, that the Committee Report is a window into BC Hydro’s inner workings.

I replied and say again, “Yes that’s absolutely right and when the experts look into that window they see a screwed up mess of massive proportions all of which happened during the last 11 years the Campbell/ Clark government has been running the show!”

There is no escaping this charge because BC Hydro has its policy directed by the government of the day and always has. The orders to bugger up our rivers and streams by IPPs came directly from the Campbell/Clark government. The government has persisted in this policy even though they have been fully informed throughout.

This report also, without saying so, is a condemnation of the media which knew all the facts leading up to the report’s criticism of IPPs, but stayed silent. This is disgraceful and there’s no excuse for their silent support for the Campbell/Clark encouragement of IPPs. If Vaughn Palmer had dealt with this issue the way he dealt with the “fast ferries” issue under the NDP, I have no doubt that the outcry from the public would have been such that the government would have been forced to cancel this outrageous policy.

As with fish farms, and will be with pipelines and tankers, it’s all there for everyone to see – BC Hydro has been brought to where, if it was in the private sector, it would be in bankruptcy protection.

Premier Clark would like to distance herself from the past and considering her role in government and her silence when in radio, one can understand why.

She could make a big step towards her goal by ending BC Hydro’s commitment to private power immediately.

If Ms. Clark refuses to change, she will deserve to have her name linked with that of Gordon Campbell because her government will continue to be joined at the hip to the 10+ years the Liberals have been destroying BC Hydro and the environment.

My Liberal colleague on the CBC is right – the report is indeed a window into BC Hydro’s government-directed follies which have destroyed our rivers, are bent on destroying many others and committing corporate suicide in the bargain.

6 Responses to “BC Libs, IPPs Can’t Distance Themselves from Hydro’s Woes”

  1. Mike says:

    I suggest that BC should have a second body, a Senate, to approve and reject legislation and even policy. But this senate can form like we form a jury: randomly picked from the people. A People’s Senate! Then they look at these kinds of government policies and say, hmm, this is goofy.

  2. jartann says:

    Words are useful things, but it is important that we understand what they mean.

    For example, Rafe tells us that “independent experts” Who are they independent from? They have no axe to grind? Pure as the driven snow?

    The word “expert” is thrown around. There are lots of experts who say lots of things. People with a cause to promote, will always argue that their experts are the real deal, and anyone else’s are not expert, or they are on the take, etc.

    This is a tried and true, but dishonest way to argue a case.

    We are told that with “reasonable conservation”, we can avoid the need for new electric facilities. The trouble is, when I ask greens I know what terms like this mean, they become quite vague. Occasionally they are honest enough to admit that what is “reasonable conservation” to them represents a major life style change for others, including the business community that presumably is being relied on to create some work (I use the term work because jobs can be created out of thin air-like digging one whole, and then filling it back in again).

    Rafe’s complaint is that BC Hydro is in trouble because all the political interference from incompetent politicians (or corrupt ones). The former almost goes without saying-these people and the NDP are all in over their heads. So his solution is to make us even more dependent on an organization managed by politicians. Doing the same thing over and over again even though you get the same unpleasant outcome looks like insanity to me. For that reason, I welcome the private sector into this field. As someone who has always worked in the private sector, I am getting sick of people who suggest that people in the private sector are all greedy, incompetent slime and those in the public sector are perfection come to earth, and their only problems stem from evil, corrupt, wicked politicians.

    The advocates of big government promise utopia if only we would elect the “correct” people. Somehow, these “correct” people never materialize. Anyone who thinks that the NDP would not be equally or more incompetent simply chooses to ignore history.

  3. r says:

    libs connected to ipp
    about 2134 people a year make over 100k at bc hydro

  4. jartann says:

    Accenture is a private company-so is the problem they are doing a poor job? If so, isn’t it up to the people at Hydro to end the contract? If public control of Hydro is such a good idea, why don’t they do that?

    Liberals connected to IPP? What does connected mean, specifically on a case by case basis? i.e. IPP #1, where is it, who owns it, and how are these owners “connected’ to Liberals?

    If all these people make this kind of money at Hydro, and this is a government owned company, why wouldn’t they fire them, reduce their salaries, or whatever it takes?

    People keep complaining about Hydro all the while defending public ownership. This suggests very confused thinking by most people.

  5. ron wilton says:

    OK jartann, here is a little homework for you.

    Google ‘insiders move to IPP industry’ and learn for yourself what everyone outside of the main stream media blindfold already knows, and is pissed off about.

    I suspect you are not as dumb as you appear, so a little research on your own might not be too difficult.

  6. G.J.W. says:

    Actually, we everyday people aren’t that confused. If it looks like crap, and smells like crap, then it has to be crap. They can smell the stink of corruption in this province, clear up to the space station.

    What about Hahn and his gigantic salary. Why don’t the Liberals fire him? For what reason did, Campbell thieve and sell our rivers, in the first place? If Campbell only leased the BCR out. Does that mean, the very valuable real estate, that went with the BCR, is leased out too? Why is the government allowing Norway’s dirty diseased fish farms, to kill our wild salmon?

    Don’t worry we dumb, stupid and confused people, really can connect the dots. If we aren’t sure about, what we read, we really are able to research for ourselves. Never, never, have I ever have I read Rafe Mair, being untruthful. I have also never caught, The Common Sense Canadian bloggers, in a lie either. All of them, can put their money, where their mouths are. That’s a hell of a lot more, than others in this province can do. Especially the BC Liberals.

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