Abbott touts power line as "important" - but to whom?

George Abbott said during last night's televised provincial Liberal leadership debate he would allow BC Hydro Corp. to go ahead with a proposed rate increase of 50 percent. The reason: that increase is necessary to support "long overdue" investments in the Crown corporation's infrastructure. But one of the two examples he cited - the northwest transmission line - isn't exactly "very important" to the general public. Instead, it would be fairer to say the line is "very important" to mining companies and independent power producers looking to operate in the region. Its total capital cost is estimated to be $395 million - with taxpayers footing $215 million of that bill.

3 Comments

Just out of curiosity, is the $215 million taxpayer contribution for the NTL coming directly from the government or through BCH? The reason I'm asking is that if it is the former would it then not be a cost pressure on BCH that is contributing to the rate increase? Of course, if this is the case, it would then have been a poor example for GA to cite as an example of why BCH needs a rate increase.

Sean,

I would argue that the Northwest Transmission Line is very important for the residents of Northwest British Columbia where there is double-digit unemployment rates.

Below is a link where you can find hundreds of public submissions from residents in the area in support of the transmission line.. and yes one or two from mining companies and independant power producers.

http://a100.gov.bc.ca/appsdata/epic/html/deploy/epic_project_home_299.html


Evan van Dyk

We are going to pay $215 million so that BC Hydro can jack up rates by 50% in order to sell power from Independent Power Producers, using our hydro resources, back to us? This makes sense because it creates a few jobs? If the government had not caused the closure of all the saw mills in the region there would be a lot more jobs.

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