Newfoundland and Labrador Natural Resources Minister Kathy Dunderdale says the province plans to pay its fair share of any additional transmission lines that could be added through New Brunswick. Dunderdale was responding to questions raised by Opposition Leader Yvonne Jones.
The Atlantic Institute for Market Studies has released an analysis of the Quebec Hydro/NB Power deal, and it raises serious red flags and key issues to be resolved. The analysis was put together by Gordon Weil, who formerly served as Maine’s Energy Director and Public Advocate. Weil says Hydro Quebec will obtain, manage and control the transmission and distribution system which can enhance its ability to exploit its own generation resources.
Weil’s analysis says the size of the HQ power supply and its control of an extensive transmission system may cause anti-competitive concerns for entities outside the two provinces. He says while NB Power customers will receive significant relief in their power rates in the initial five years of the deal, the promised additional benefits are considerably more speculative. NB Power will retain and close, mainly at its own cost, five major generating stations with the future of the nuclear facility in doubt. Weil concludes that the full impact of the deal, both positive and negative, will depend on a host of variables that he says are impossible to forecast with reasonable certainty.
A past president of the Liberal Party and a former director of Newfoundland and Labrador Hydro is accusing Premier Danny Williams of making it impossible to negotiate a deal with Hydro Quebec on the Lower Churchill. Danny Dumaresque says the provincial government snubbed Hydro Quebec, which was purchasing recall power from the Upper Churchill at fair market value worth billions of dollars a year, and already wanted to buy the remaining 3000 megawatts which the province sold to Emera Energy of Nova Scotia.