19 January 2012

Locke admits assessment was “probably not” fair #nlpoli #cdnpoli

In an interview with the Telegram that appeared in Thursday’s edition, Memorial University economist Wade Locke admitted that his assessment of Muskrat Falls probably offered an unfair comparison with alternatives.

When asked by The Telegram, “If that doesn’t include transmission, is that a fair comparison?”

Locke answered, “Probably not. You’d want to include transmission as well.”

The impact of Locke’s omission was to hide almost 50% of the estimated cost per kilowatt hour for the project. As SRBP noted on Wednesday, that rendered his comparisons useless.

It also meant his conclusion – that Muskrat Falls was the cheapest solution – had nothing to support it.  “Unfounded” would be the polite word for it.

No word on whether Locke will get a do-over.

No word either on whether or not the Western Star editorial team will retract their Thursday editorial in light of Locke’s admission.

Under a headline “A trusted opinion”, the crowd on the west coast called Locke’s voice “independent and dependable”.  The editorial said that Locke’s opinion “will almost certainly carry more weight than many other opinions.”

D’oh!

- srbp -