There’s a dif­fer­ence be­tween city and county elec­tric­ity rates

Seaway News - - OPINION - Elaine Kennedy Enviro News

How much en­ergy do you use? How much do you have to pay for it? If you live in Corn­wall, per­haps you feel lucky. If you live in the Coun­ties, per­haps you feel put upon.

Ac­cord­ing to the On­tario Clean Air Al­liance, “On­tario Power Gen­er­a­tion (OPG) wants to in­crease the rate it re­ceives for power from its nu­clear units by a 30% next year. OPG is ba­si­cally ask­ing to dig into elec­tric­ity ratepayer pock­ets at the rate of $755 mil­lion a year to pre- pay for re­build­ing its ag­ing Dar­ling­ton Nu­clear Sta­tion.”

OPG is also ask­ing for a sig­nif­i­cant in­crease in the rate it re­ceives for power from its her­itage hy­dro projects – dams and power plants that were built many, many decades ago. Some of this money may be used to up­date th­ese fa­cil­i­ties, but it is just as likely to be used to sub­si­dize the re­build­ing of the Dar­ling­ton plant given the rock bot­tom costs of op­er­at­ing 60 or 70 year old wa­ter power plants.

Ac­cord­ing to OPG, its rate in­creases will raise the av­er­age res­i­den­tial cus­tomers’ elec­tric­ity bill by $183 per year. “

I have con­cerns about re­build­ing the Dar­ling­ton plant for a cou­ple of rea­sons. The first of course is en­vi­ron­men­tal.

Ac­cord­ing to the Coun­cil of Cana­di­ans “There are 2.3 mil­lion fuel bun­dles sit­ting in tem­po­rary stor­age fa­cil­i­ties in Canada ... And all of it - 46,000 tonnes in all—will be dan­ger­ously ra­dioac­tive for hun­dreds of thou­sands of years.”

This is the legacy that we are leav­ing our chil­dren—to thou­sands of gen­er­a­tions.

The sec­ond con­cern is fi­nan­cial. The build­ing or re­build­ing of nu­clear fa­cil­i­ties al­ways goes over bud­get. That I don’t un­der­stand - isn’t there are bid­ding process and shouldn’t the win­ner have to suck up the over­runs if they don’t do the job prop­erly? But there is al­ways an over­run that we ei­ther as tax­pay­ers or as users of On­tario Hy­dro’s prod­uct, have to ab­sorb — pay for!

The On­tario Clean Air Al­liance points out that “On­tario has many lower cost and safer op­tions for meet­ing its elec­tric­ity needs, ev­ery­thing from ramp­ing up ef­fi­ciency and con­ser­va­tion at a cost of about 3 cents a kilo­watthour (kWh) to im­port­ing power from Que­bec at a cost of 4 cents a kWh, less than half what even OPG is op­ti­misti­cally promis­ing power from a re-built Dar­ling­ton Sta­tion will cost.”

I was sure I heard a lit­tle while ago that On­tario had paid the United States to take some of our sur­plus en­ergy. I hope I have heard wrong! I know it is im­pos­si­ble to store elec­tric­ity - we don’t have the bat­tery tech­nol­ogy to do so yet— but pay­ing some­one to take it? Dump it some­where free of charge!!!

I sug­gest that each of us can be more ef­fi­cient - I re­al­ized just as I sat down to write this col­umn that I had for­got­ten to turn my com­puter off at the power bar this morn­ing. Shame on me!!

Have each of us re­ally looked at our en­ergy ef­fi­ciency? Even if you live in Corn­wall and are not sub­ject to the rates of On­tario Hy­dro, you should be look­ing at ef­fi­cien­cies - it will save you money!!

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.