BC Hydro badly mismanaged: NDP

British Columbians pay the price for BC Liberal mismanagement of BC Hydro, says Kamloops-North Thompson candidate Kathy Kendall

KAMLOOPS Newly-released documents show the Liberal government’s mismanagement of BC Hydro and the province’s energy supply will result in a billion-dollar loss over four years, says Kathy Kendall, NDP candidate for Kamloops-North Thompson.

“People in Kamloops and across B.C. are paying more for their hydro as a direct result of Liberal government policies,” she said. “We’re paying for mismanagement that has resulted in a massive surplus of expensive power, and it’s just getting worse.”

Kendall said the BC Liberals required BC Hydro to sign long-term high-priced contracts with private power producers, resulting in a massive surplus. BC Hydro documents revealed by the NDP last week show a power surplus of 5,200 GWh for 2013, and an expected surplus of 5,500 GWh in 2015.

BC Hydro’s 2012 Annual Report shows the utility is purchasing electricity from private producers at an average of $94 per MWh, but can only sell the surplus for an average of $37 per MWh. The result is a $296 million loss this year alone, amounting to more than $1 billion over the coming four years.

“There’s only one place to turn to make up for huge losses at BC Hydro – their customers,” said Tom Friedman, NDP candidate for Kamloops-South Thompson. “The Liberal government’s decision to force BC Hydro to purchase expensive electricity from privatize power projects is costing everyone.”

The New Democrat candidates said Liberal policies have led to private power projects on hundreds of B.C. rivers and streams, and higher electricity prices for British Columbians.

 

“New Democrats would take practical steps to get BC Hydro back on its feet, beginning with restoring the oversight role of the independent BC Utilities Commission,” said Friedman.