15 August 2013

Time to re-think dam costs #nlpoli #nspoli

They call it Site C.

No, it isn’t a sequel to Jurassic Park or The Lost World.

Site C is a 900 megawatt hydroelectric dam project in British Columbia that BC Hydro originally estimated would cost $6.0 billion. The provincial government shielded the project from scrutiny by the provincial utilities regulator.

Sounds familiar, doesn’t it?

Well here’s a bit that will freak you right out. 

As the Vancouver Sun reported last week, the provincial energy minister thinks the government should review the entire project now that the price tag is up around $6.6 billion, $8.0 billion if you toss in a transmission line.

If that wasn’t enough, here’s another bit of weirdness.  In Newfoundland and Labrador, the provincial government did everything in its power to avoid talking about natural gas as a way of generating electricity.  That’s because natural gas would be way cheaper than Muskrat Falls.

In British Columbia, they are talking about Site C as the way to develop natural gas.  The hydro project would produce enough electricity to run a liquid natural gas terminal to allow BC to export natural gas.