I don’t know
about you, but to me 220,000 people without power or suffering rolling
blackouts, seems a rather compelling crisis. 

Not to Premier
Cathy Dunderdale, though.  “WE’RE NOT IN
A CRISIS” says Dunderdale at the Sunday News Conference. The Premier must have
been the only one, in the whole Province, running a high temperature!  Appearing on the third day of, yes…a “crises”,
to acknowledge something is afoot, perhaps it is still not clear if the Premier
even knows the power is out.

If the
outages failed to cause Premier Dunderdale frustration, anger and resentment
that was not the outcome for most people.   

NL Hydro V-P’s
admission, “we saw this coming” apparently applied only to his ability to read
the next days’ weather forecast. Couldn’t someone have told him: when it gets
cold, as it often does in Newfoundland especially in winter, the demand for
power increases. It’s been happening since Newfoundland got electricity.  DA!!!!!

The foresight
needed to complete the summer maintenance program, DURING THE SUMMER, evidently must require uncommon vision. Though Henderson’s
honesty was refreshing, his boss Ed Martin was not nearly so humble…hearing him
backtrack on Henderson’s admissions at the Sunday’s News Conference, blaming
“aging” equipment at Holyrood for the outages, reminded me of a Smallwood Book
title, “No Apology From Me”.  The media
let him get away with it…again!  Is there
anyone among them who can ask a decent question!

For Pete’s
sake it’s Newfoundland in the month of January…Nalcor’s SUMMER maintenance
program is still not finished…aging equipment, my ass.  If anyone looked at the few days per year
when Holyrood actually operates let alone at peak capacity they would have Ed
Martin’s hide for footwear for not having Holyrood, and all the back-up
turbines, in tip top shape.

People have a right to be damn mad, especially as you shiver
and your kids are getting crankier by the minute. Look people: stop letting
your selves be bamboozled with bullshit. JUST STOP LETTING AUTHORITIES PULL THE

held its open line on the rolling blackouts, on Friday morning, the Hostess
attempted to invoke the importance of Muskrat Falls; all their electricity problems
would then be resolved.  Sensible callers
to “the Show” were having none of it. 
They could see that bad planning by the Utility was largely responsible
for this debacle and any facile comments to the contrary would not be permitted
to camouflage the truth.

VOCM is as
guilty as any of the others for pretending that serious analysis of public
policy issues can be substituted with talk, talk, talk, more chatter and arrant
nonsense. VOCM is a useful tool if you want to find out whether the Mall is
open or where the “warming centers” are located; even its talk Shows have a
purpose.  But as to serious journalism, it
may as well be owned by the Emergency Measures Organization (EMO).

The CBC is another
great EMO microphone….god, if I have to listen to the shrill voice of Mayor Doc
O’ Keefe one more jeesely minute, I’ll choose freezing in the dark!

Think any of
the ‘Journalists’ would follow up and report on what happened, at Holyrood, to
cause $13.2 million damage to a turbine, last year…good luck with that!  What did the Fire Marshall say? What did the
expert analysis conclude? Was anyone at fault?

Did anyone
think to ask why Nalcor cancelled its PUB Application for a new transmission
line from Central Newfoundland to the Avalon as Nalcor chooses to spill water from
Bay d’Espoir and other Hydro sites or how that played into the current debacle?
Not likely. The CBC chooses to be another Call Centre just like VOCM! 

The subject
of the media’s failure to deal with Nalcor and a complicit Government was to be
the subject of today’s Post.  But how
could one ignore the conditions in which so many people find themselves?

While issues
of power security and supply get lost in the multiplicity of other issues that
plague an unwise and enormous use of public funds, these power outages ought
now to cause greater reflection on our vital electricity system among members
of the public.

People have
a right to be ‘pissed’ as these blackouts continue daily.    

Isn’t this a
good time to ask yourself: what position will you find yourself in if the
Labrador Island Link, the transmission line from Muskrat Falls, goes down in a
winter storm? The same geniuses that can’t complete a Summer Maintenance
Program on Holyrood generators and back-up turbines to supply a vital
commodity, next in importance to food and shelter, are going to run a
transmission line where?  Answer: down
from Labrador and over the Long Range Mountains, one of the nastiest spots in
North America for wind and sleet and snow. 

How long
will a downed transmission tower take to repair? According to Manitoba Hydro
International, the Consultant in whom Nalcor and the Dunderdale Government
places complete faith, the repair period “…up to one month or greater in remote line sections are possible” . How would you like to be facing a
winter of rolling blackouts?

Now ask
yourself: do I understand even the basic aspects of the contracts which Nalcor
has entered into with Nova Scotia?  How
much power has been legally obligated to that Province, not just from Muskrat
Falls, but from our entire Provincial Grid? 
 What happens if Nova Scotia needs
that power as much as we do when cold weather conditions cause similar
excessive power demands in both Provinces? 
Ask too, if we can be sued by Nova Scotia businesses if we fail to

Hundreds of
millions of dollars, public and private capital, have been spent in this
Province on high speed cable including fibre OP.  A very high percentage of residents have computers,
smart technology, phones, Ipads and the like; all are armed with the ability to
communicate with each other and increasingly with their thermostats, ovens and
hot water heaters. They could even communicate with their smart meters if
Nalcor thought for a moment about an intelligent way of reducing Peak Load or
employing managed processes to limit power consumption in place of having
asking people to comply via VOCM. 

The Economist Article “Smart Grids: Wiser Wires” is an excellent item describing
how Nalcor is missing the boat.  Imagine
if with a few mouse clicks the Utility was able to learn where a problem on the
line is located, route around it, or “fix itself”?

Vice-President of Nalcor, Gilbert Bennett, is a cable guy.  He is supposed to understand the advantages
of Smart Grid technology.  What is he
doing?  He’s heading up Muskrat Falls so
that he can put more highly expensive electricity onto “dumb wires”. 

When Italy,
Sweden, Germany and the U.S. are far advanced on Smart Grid technology, some
even making smart meters mandatory, saving billions of dollars in the process,
Newfoundland remains in the era of the dumb wire just because Danny and
Dunderdale want a political legacy. 

Here at home
highly qualified people, like Economist Dr. James Feehan of Memorial University,
have written helpful solutions to the peak power issue.  Professional Engineer, Winston Adams an
energy expert, former employee of NL Hydro has frequently written to the
Telegram detailing highly credible methods of employing energy saving devices negating
arguments for a foolish project like Muskrat. Others, too, have sound
contributions to make.

They won’t
get listened to because, as one former senior public servant explained: “they,
too, would have to drink Nalcor’s Kool-Aid”.

 There are lots of questions you need to think
about and put to your Utility when the dust settles.  Don’t expect the media to do it for you.  They have proven they are not up to the job. You
have to do it yourself, else it won’t get done.

To quote Ed
Martin’s favourite line:  “The Power is
In Your Hands”. 

While Ed
Martin wasn’t really serious, take that power into your hands.  Take it! Demand a different course. Show
Cathy Dunderdale who is boss. 
Stop being
bamboozled by bullshit!

Keep warm.
Des Sullivan
Des Sullivan
St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada Uncle Gnarley is hosted by Des Sullivan, of St. John's. He is a businessman engaged over three decades in real estate management and development companies and in retail. He is currently a Director of Dorset Investments Limited and Donovan Holdings Limited. During his early career he served as Executive Assistant to Premier's Frank D. Moores (1975-1979) and Brian Peckford (1979-1985). He also served as a Part-Time Board Member on the Canada-Newfoundland Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board (C-NLOPB). Uncle Gnarley appears on the masthead representing serious and unambiguous positions on NL politics and public policy. Uncle Gnarley is a fiscal conservative possessing distinctly liberal values and a non-partisan persusasion. Those values and opinions underlie this writer's views on NL's politics, economy and society. Uncle Gnarley publishes Monday mornings and more often when events warrant.


Bill left public life shortly after the signing of the Atlantic Accord and became a member of the Court of Appeal until his retirement in 2003. During his time on the court he was involved in a number of successful appeals which overturned wrongful convictions, for which he was recognized by Innocence Canada. Bill had a special place in his heart for the underdog.

Churchill Falls Explainer (Coles Notes version)

If CFLCo is required to maximize its profit, then CFLCo should sell its electricity to the highest bidder(s) on the most advantageous terms available.


This is the most important set of negotiations we have engaged in since the Atlantic Accord and Hibernia. Despite being a small jurisdiction we proved to be smart and nimble enough to negotiate good deals on both. They have stood the test of time and have resulted in billions of dollars in royalties and created an industry which represents over a quarter of our economy. Will we prove to be smart and nimble enough to do the same with the Upper Churchill?


  1. Bamboozled by bullshit is an understatement. Media? I did an interview with the local paper 3-4 weeks ago on the termination of Great Western Forestry, original contractor for the clearing of the Right of Way for the transmission lines from Muskrat to Churchill Falls, stating what actually happened. It never got published because it was the truth. The contractors that replaced GWF is receiving 3 times what GWF was and they are also in court with numerous safety violations. There are a few others issues that raises an eyebrow but it all got shushed. If there was an independent investigation maybe the people of Labrador would get the truth and see what is really happening.

  2. All you have to do is listen to the words of the Heads of Nalcor, NL Power and our government to realize we are being fed a endless amount of BS so much BS that not all the snowplows in NL could clear it away.

  3. As a society we have become far too reliant on the luxuries of our time. Is going a day or two without power REALLY a crisis? A crisis because we can't play Candy Crush Saga, or update our facebook? A crisis because we have to eat food from a can rather than the latest and greatest recipe from pintrest? Maybe a blackout now and then is needed to give the world as a whole a reality check… come on people, bundle up, throw an extra couple blankets on the bed and suck it up.

    • Yes,I would consider being without power/heat (most people have ele tric heat) a crisis especially since in some areas people have been without power for over 4 days. If you think that house is still warm in -25 to -35 degree weather after a few days then you need to go back to school. Also not everyone can have proper/enough backup options or generators to assist xuring this time. So stop undermining a severe condition and actually try offering helpful advice, instead of hurtful criticism.

    • No, not being able to play candy crush sage is not a crisis. Not having a modern day "luxury" we have come to depend upon for survival is. A lot of people can heat their homes and cook their food only with electricity. As a result of this lack of electricity, some people in Corner Brook have had their house burned down and I some people may have died. Many local businesses have taken a bit of a hit as a result of the lack of power as well. If grocery stores suddenly ran out of food would you tell everyone to suck it up people used to live without such a luxury for hundreds of thousands of years?

  4. I have no confidence in a government that cannot manage the current infrastructure or today's budget; to confidently believe that planning for future infrastructure and ongoing managed government spending will occur when committed to doubling the current provincial debt, is a dream.
    When the bill comes in, the past & present actors from Danny to the current government will be held to account, to the same account Joey Smallwood was held – Newfoundland Public Opinion.
    As a Conservative – this government is a disappointment – as Conservative as the Marois government in Quebec – Socialist Economics.

  5. The Media Party are doing as effective a job as the ongoing arthritic bureaucracy in Newfoundland – Part of the assignment of the Media Party is to to vigorously engage in investigative journalism, not to act as potted plants; active investigative journalism is required to root out the deep-seated corruptness and lack of accountability within the integrated Newfoundland Governmental system and pigs at the trough, the usual suspects of the connected in government and the local business community – as a result, exposing the Newfoundland Media Party's open-ended apathetic journalism.

  6. This is complex stuff. Of all the recent media scrums it is Ludlow of NL Power which really impresses me with his knowledge. The others are great communicators, but short on facts. Martin is the master of spin. 35% higher than the average for the past 5 years. Well how about the peak of the past 5 years. Compare apples to apples. It is a small slight of language, but using the average reference answers the question, but it is not the entire story.

    Likewise the third line from GFW not having an impact. Well I just heard on VOCM that the resevoir at GFW is only half full. I am not sure why this is the case. But if true there would be a direct reduction in the possible output. So if the plant could produce 90 MW, is it now only producing 45 MW. Is this 45 MW less due to the head. If is was available could it be directed to St.John's, or would that require the third line. This is based on a call to open line, so I am not sure how reliable it is.

    Martin uses careful, very well scripted words.

    I want the entire truth… and I want it to be consistent.

  7. The Culture of Fear in Newfoundland is open to all to view, to openly criticize the governing & business class in Newfoundland is to risk their censure – the limiting of one's current and future opportunities in Newfoundland.
    When comrade Hugo Williams controlled the regime, openly giving bad press would be greeted with the full force of the unified regime of the political and business public, akin to being ostracized or blackballed – Hugo was not the maker or designer of this arrangement, he was a pro at abusing, milking, and refining the art – the ruler may have changed, but the practice will continue due to the insular & cut-off nature of Newfoundland.
    Without free debate and active opposition – bullying prevails – Newfoundland seems to lack either, generating a Culture of Fear.

  8. This editorial represents nothing but opportunism after the fact. The editor like all of us had no understanding of what was coming down before it happened. He dug up a few facts and throws in a bit of spit and fire to create a backlash against everything.

  9. Mr. Sullivan, I don't think that the people of Newfoundland and Labrador need this right now. Yes, we are in a critical period or crisis, whatever you want to call it, but to heap this onto people is not really necessary. We need to let the people with the know-how (not you or me) get this fixed and then we can deal with blame and accusations. This issue would have been an issue right now even if Muskrat Falls did not exist. Why are you trying to tie the two together with your fire and brimstone attack? You article does nothing to help the people who are presently without power. You would be better served at the moment if you went door to door in your neighbourhood to see if everyone was ok. Let me guess – you are sitting all warm and comfortable in your home or at your office.

    • I think Mr. Sullivan is right on by bringing this to bear now while the conversation is heated. I do think his wording is a little strong in places but I understand his intentions and have my own concerns about leadership and the decisions they have made.

      Otherwise, here is what happens.

      1. Say nothing until things quiet down

      2. When things are quiet, people worry less and are less likely to demand change.

      3. When change does not occur, more problems occur and things that are preventable end up starting over again.

      The only way to break the cycle is to speak when the subject is relevant and before complacency sets in again. Speaking up about poor leadership is NOT preventing the talented people on the front lines from getting everything back online.

    • sounds to me you too got sour grapes in your mouth .you too instead of complaining run for political office .or a spot on the board of directors with nalcor .because you seem to know a lot of stuff about nothing .

    • This is a fascinating string of insults. I have a couple of issues and Des knows I have a great affinity for Hydro Electric.
      That said:

      I would like a business model that makes sense shown to me (us) . I am not sure that has been done.

      Hydro (NALCOR) Apparently has dropped the ball with maintenance and redundancies including ready availability of major components.

      The Cathy Dunderdale leadership has failed to garner the trust and excitement over this project that the Danny Williams regime drew.

      This government with its actions on things like the COD Coalition for the Disabled; where they worked to skew a VOCM Straw poll with names that were likely spelled "Anonymous" . Anyone capable of kicking crutches out from under the lame are very special: Vary capable of poor conduct.

      Calling what just happened anything short of critical (Crisis) AFTER this week end, is to display the cocoon that has become home. This could have been explained until Sunday night when the province went down. Up untill then it was a very severe inconvenience: To push this is not a crisis after that is fool hardy and done at political peril, A lack of empathy with a situation that may be responsible for up to three deaths. There was an opportunity to back track dating the statement before the province went black..

      This being the case as I see it.. It leaves me wonder: Was this allowed to degrade to this level because a business decision dictated this gear will be redundant in 2017 so why fix it. Much like replacing tyres on your car a week before you turn it in off lease.

      Further to that would the government of the day see repeated break downs as a source to justify the Muskrat Falls program.

      No Mr Anonymous: Des Sullivan has some very good points. Mr Sullivan has a history you may want to check out, Business owner with considerable success, Political entity (PC of all things) He is bright, insightful and thankfully sometimes wrong . I Honestly pray he is wrong on the Muskrat Falls thing but he has done his homework and I know his number should I to wish to debate it.
      Oh.. My Name is Alex McGruer, Just in case it comes up anonymous!

  10. I agree with your rationalization, Mr. Tucker. But is that what we're really seeing in this post? All I see is hate towards the present government. I also glanced back through some earlier posts and it sure looks like Mr. Sullivan is on a mission. And I do not think his mission is in the best interests of the people of NL. It's more of an anti-present government. He seems to have an axe to grind over something that happened to him in the past. (And no I am not a member of either political party in NL nor do I support either of the parties specifically).

    And the comments about the Radio stations have nothing to do with the present hydro situation on the Avalon. At least the VOCM people were out and about and trying to help. I doubt if Mr. Sullivan was. He just seems to be a vindictive person.

    • Hi Anonymous,

      Thanks for your comments. I agree with your comments also. While I see some nuggets worthy of exploring in this post, I believe that the language is too strong and confrontational for my taste.

      I prefer a more strategic, more tactful approach myself. Approaching a problem this way will turn people OFF and the intended message gets lost in the anger of confrontation.

      So a call for a review is fair.

      And …… Nalcor and NF Power do a lot of things RIGHT as well.

      I wasn't defending Mr. Sullivan's approach but more that he is right to demand answers when the subject is hot and not when it is allowed to fade in our memories.

      How he is demanding answers is another thing. 🙂

      Create a great day.


  11. IT seems to me that it is indeed an strange time for you to make such remarks regarding .VOCM,and CBC myi think you have been eating to much ice cream and you got brain freeze . . it is obvious that you are against the muskrat falls project . so in order for you to get your so called point across you have to turn on the media as well .shame on you ! thank GOD for the fantastic work that VOCM and CBC does for our province sometimes those reporters go beyond the call of duty to make sure that our province is indeed the safest place in the world to live in winter or summer . as for your remarks about the transmission lines coming down in a winter storm in the long range mountians well . . I would like to ask you this question how do you ever get the courage to fly in a plane . because there is a probability it to could crash in a winter storm .

    • I listened intently to VOCM all week end. It was on in the background all the time. CBC and VOCM are my go to resource for quick local news.
      That said CBC is government funded: Thankfully you would never know listening to the programming.
      VOCM is local. I listen to them and 101.1 when not on CBC
      I was listening to the broadcast and was fascinated by the amount of PSA's and government related advertising going on through the day. They must have had 80 – 90% of the listening public and all I heard was variations of government funded adds. Anti Bullying for example.
      There were some issues this week end that may not go away.
      One argument was $100,000,000.00 has been spent last year in maintenance . this is for 250,000 or so clients. That's $400.00 each.. Is that right? About one months heat and light each. Maintenance has been light.

  12. What kind of rebate is the government going to provide the Newfoundland taxpayers? Maybe no rebate for the poor management and inconsistent service without the option of power service due to its monopoly; but I suspect there won't be a problem asking for a rate increase year-after-after to pay for the current & future mismanagement – the taxpayer always pays.
    Governments become arrogant and forget that governments answer to the taxpayer – it's not there money to mismanage.

  13. I thank Mr. Sullivan for the honest and open reporting we get with respect to this government and its handling of every file, including Muskrat Falls. Does he have an axe to grind? Only he can answer that question but I suspect not. After all, he is a prominent and successful business person and, in colonial St. John's, it is not that safe to be a critic of the tyrants calling themselves PC's. This tyranny started early in the Williams era and continues unabated.

    Mr. Sullivan is a voice of dissent, to be sure, but an odd one…given his past association with the provincial PC Party. He, like many sober former members of past PC administrations, is appalled at the sheer crassness and utter incomprehensibility of this administration"s abiding obsession with Muskrat Falls. In the face of all kinds of evidence to the contrary, they have invoked secrecy and used obfuscation at every level to ensure we do not get an open assessment of this debacle.

    That some of you gutless wonders, hiding behind your "anonymous" facades, would deem to attack his motives is reprehensible. What are your motives, if you don't have the decency or courage to at least sign your name and take responsibility for your comments? I can respect a differing opinion and perspective but only if people have the guts to tell us who they are.

    • Mr Rogers, I don't have any motive. The way that this article was put together was deplorable and opportunistic. I say that "He has an axe to grind" based on what I read in this post and prior posts, you say "You do not think he does but you are not sure". Your argument for your point is no different from my argument to mine neither.

      I have no problem giving my name but I see how freely this guy tosses around names and that I do not want to be a part of him.

      Mr. Sullivan only responded once in this thread in the 24 hours that its been posted and that was when he saw an "opportunity" to did up some more venomous spew. I'm not saying that the guy who posted about the fire was wrong, I'm just saying that Mr. Sullivan has his eye on the radar to get venom and really doesn't have people's best interest in mind.

    • Quote" That some of you gutless wonders, hiding behind your "anonymous" facades, would deem to attack his motives is reprehensible. What are your motives, if you don't have the decency or courage to at least sign your name and take responsibility for your comments? I can respect a differing opinion and perspective but only if people have the guts to tell us who they are."

      Mr. Rogers, I did not realize that the name of the person who wrote a message was more important than the message. That tells me something.

      For your information, I do not work for any radio station, I do not work for the government. I am not an employee or employer of Nalcor. I do not even live on the Avalon. I do not know Mr. Sullivan nor come in contact with anything he's written before. I just happened on this article through whatever method. For the past 3 or 4 days I've been following the Hydro problems on the Avalon and I've felt the deepest sympathy for those going through the emotions of the situation. I have been following the Radio almost constantly.

      And then I come upon this article which was written in the guise of the present Hydro problem and the article fills up with Muskrat Falls bashing along with the Radio stations bashings. My eyes went agape when I read this since it was not the appropriate time to get on a MF bashing bandwagon. That's why I said that this is not the proper time. The time should be spent trying to get through the problems on the Avalon.

    • This was the proper time for Mr. Sullivan to say what needed to be said….that both the government and NALCOR are run by incompetent people who have their heads in the sand when it comes to dealing with the "everyday" realities faced by the people who are dependent on reliable power.

      I don't live on the Avalon but a very close relative of mine works for the power company and he, like many others, was out in the bad weather, trying to help restore the power. These workers are doing a fantastic job in getting power back on stream….that is not my issue.

      My issue is the the spin machine used by both the government and NALCOR to try and hide their own incompetence and lack of preparation, all due, in my opinion, to their eternal obsession with their pet project. By that I suggest that key financial resources are being syphoned off from the regular system to finance the monstrosity that is Muskrat Falls, only to give away the puny power output from that project to Nova Scotia. We have sufficient power capability on the Island already, if only they were more diligent in upgrading and maintaining the system already available. There will be NO stability on the Island for another 10 years at this rate and people may have to get used to rolling blackouts every year.

    • So, cancel Muskrat Falls. But then what do we do? Give suggestions as to what to do. And no our present hydro production are not large enough to be sustainable in a growing province. Give us viable realistic alternatives. Alternatives that will get us 3000 megawatts and beyond. That's what we need.

    • Rogers says we have enough power capability on the island already, and 'anonymous' says our present hydro production is not large enough for a growing province.
      Solution: 1. Through cost effective efficiency measures (especially for heating and hot water) we can flatten our peak winter load up to 600 MW., which is way more than necessary
      2. about 80 Mw of additional hydro is available on the island
      3. add 100 Mw of wind, technical feasible according to MHI, and more if required with added controls( this is intermittent power , but very useful

      Cost: Item 1 is no cost to the public, as it is self fianced by energy savings( see what other jurisdictions are doing….. 10 times more than we are
      Item 2 and 3 together about 1 billion cost.

    • You want specifics on this site. MF specifics involve some 10,000 or more pages. As Nalcor had assessed all alternatives, perhaps you should ask for their detailed assessments for the solution suggested. But a quickie for dummies: average house electric heating load is about 6 kw. Efficient heating load for same heat at minus 18C is just 3 kw. 150,000 houses is a reduction of 450 MW. Do the same for commercial buildings, for hot water consumption = 600MW reduction. then there is reductions from making existing houses more air tight, more basement insulation etc, all which are efficiency improvements. Then lower loads from this reduces transmission losses, likely another 50MW reduction……do you get the picture? Efficiency gives big time conservation at relatively low cost, the most effective tool for demand management . Flatten the winter peak, stupid. It's as simple as that, and should have started a decade ago. But never too late, or expect more rotating blackouts as the alternative.

    • You sound just like Mr. Sullivan with your choice of language. All I asked for were specifics on how to reduce hydro consumption rather than waiting on MF. Thank you for that, even though your choice of words indicate that you are either Mr. Sullivan or a member of the same Rat Pack.

    • Thank you for the compliment, as my writing skills are far inferior to Mr. Sullivan. So language aside are you now a convert to how to cut energy consumption (primarily Holyrood , which is about 500 MW)
      As to your other questions (added controls for more wind), some jurisdiction already exceed 15 and even 25 percent wind on the system. Mhi says 10 percent is no problem. Wind is variable, and good coordination is needed for forecasting wind speeds and allowing the controllers to optimize the wind without bringing down the rest of the system. This can add 1 percent extra to the cost of wind.
      Wind is about 2.5 million per MW, so 100 MW =250 million
      Island hydro 80 MW was estimated by Nalcor, I believe around 500 million?
      Of note ……our wind on Jan 3 was delivering 28 Mw , about half of its capacity. This is about normal. On Jan 4 it got more windy, and was delivering 47 MW out of 54 Mw max capacity. At this time of crisis…. that was like a gold mine. That should be a big boost for the wind promoters. And you know our leaky houses need more energy at windy times, crisis or not.
      So are you of the MuskRAT Pack? Or an open minded person seeking facts and information.
      I am of the Green species….. solution offered is pretty green, right? but look at the cost savings.

    • No, I am not a Pro-MF, nor am I an anti-MF. I'm just trying to find information. But I must say that when someone makes a comment that can be construed as pro, the anti sure has tender skin. There have been a few posts which goes against the grain of the anti and they've been shot down with a choice of words which could be considered slander.

      The original post that I made here was in reference to Mr. Sullivan whom I consider an opportunist. I think that his feathers have been riled in recent history and now he is grinding a bitter axe. But as soon as something falls into his lap, he will abandon this group as quick as you can blink.

      Again, if you want to increase the number of people that support your cause, you will not do it by shooting people down. They will just not go for the cause and will not want anything to do with a Rat Pack.

    • You seem to prefer to knock Mr Sullivan on a personal level rather than comment on the merits of solutions that would have avoided this power crisis.
      I do not personally know Mr Sullivan, but I really like his writing style, and reminds me of Ray Guy. His arguments against MF are good in my opinion. I wish he would say more on technical issues, but he does not have the resources of Nalcor, so it is unfair to ask him for specifics for alternatives while letting Nalcor off the hook for not evaluating many worthwhile alternatives ( like the proposed solution above). I could steer you to more info on that, but you seem more interested in attacking Sullivan personally as an opportunist. As to my cause, it is no more than what all should expect: reliable low cost electricity that is environmently friendly. MF is not low cost, has serious issues with reliability, but is environmently friendly if you exclude mercury poisoning to fish downstream. Can you disagree?

    • No, I do not disagree with you because I do not know. The naysayers keep saying that our hydro bills will increase big time with MF. I have never seen a counter argument saying that they will nor rise with MF. But that's not to say that they haven't said. And of course I want hydro as cheap as it can possibly be.

      I find it irritating the way he comes across, not only in this thread but prior threads as well. Right now is the time to discuss what can be done whether it's good or bad. But the timing of his post when so many people were insecure as to what was happening to them and their homes was not the time to rile people in that fashion. The people without hydro needed support at that time. Time and place for everything. That time of a blasting argument is just as bad as the premier not going to public earlier.

      Whatever happens, let's all hope it's for the better of our province. God guard thee Newfoundland…..

    • On Jan 11 you said you cannot agree because you do not know. Lets look at cost. Our present cost is about 11cents per kwh. the government came our with their calculator saying an increase of about 40 when MF comes on and about 2 percent a year more after that. So with tax that is about 16 cents per kwh, And this is a blended rate.For comparison Nova Scotia is expecting a one percent jump per year. We get about 8 percent jump per year. The new power by itself is 25 cents or more and our existing power is relatively cheap. And with cost overruns , the power must go up more. And if people use less electricity, either by conservation, efficiency , or higher cost, the power cost again must increase because it is a take or pay deal. Nfld hydro must pay Nalcor even if less power is used. That's a viscious circle. Any with these power outages, conservation and efficiency is seen to be necessary, BUT that fundamentally goes against the economics of MF, which is hindered by conservation and efficiency moves. Are you sold on that logic?

  14. Consider this:1. a third line (209 million cost) to the Avalon was filed to the PUB , and then withdrawn in favour of Muskrat falls hearings, yet this line is still needed and reduces dependence on Holyrood. 2. They spend 100 million a year on maintenance for all our island power assets, and will spend 400 million a year on interest costs alone for Muskrat Falls, whose power may be very unreliable ( a downed power line in the Northern Peninsula in winter will take one month or longer to put back in service).
    Spending billions for a block of power for the island smaller than Holyrood produces while skimping on maintenance and taking huge risks on the timing of maintenance, hoping a cold snap will not occur until late January, suggest incompetence. It has all to do with the decisions taken to proceed with Muskrat Falls as the best choice, come hell or high water, or cold snaps in early January. This crisis is one of the fall outs for this decision, and there will be worse to come. Des said what needed to be said. And he is to be commended for keeping this alive, least we forget what has transpired in misleading the population on the merits of this mad MF scheme. No private company would invest in such a risky plan, but may buy the assets for a dollar in bankrupsy a few years from now. Any reader who thinks mother nature is to blame for these rotating blackouts is misinformed: we have had many peak demand years exceeding this one, and hydro is mandated to have reliable supply capacity exceeding that peak demand plus a good safety factor. In the past, hydro met these challenges, now they cannot , and seek to place blame elsewhere. Heads need to roll for this incompetence, starting with Mien Premier, who is the ring leader is misinforming the population. Eventually incompetence catches up. They say it is easier for a engineer to become a journalist than a journalist to become a engineer. And so the media generally is bamboozeled by the power companied spin on the causes of this crisis, and are unable to ask the important questions to expose their deception. Fortunately, Des Sullivan has a better grasp on the issues, including technical ones, than most of the media. Keep it up Des.

  15. Hugo Williams and the Oligarchs know a thing-or-two about operating government regulated industries that provide steady increases in revenue paid by taxpayer money. Why deal with regulators – PUB, freedom to information – Bill 29, or listen to opposition in Hugo Williams & the Oligarch's Newfoundlandistan – Why even finish out a term in public service when there is more money to be made from the public trough for Hugo & the Oligarchs?

    Who benefits from the construction of Muskrat Falls? The Newfoundland taxpayer or the Oligarchs on Newfoundlandistan's companies?
    Who will receive discounted power rates from Muskrat? Hugo's Alderon Mining interest & the ratepayers of Nova Scotia? Or the Newfoundland taxpayer?
    Who has power on a Sunday night during an power emergency? Hugo's hockey team for his & the other Oligarchs of Newfoundlandistan's enjoyment? Or the taxpayers of Newfoundland at home without power or with and instructed to conserve?

    Hugo may have done without a cheque during his terms of public service to act as common Newfoundlander – but we all understand that the golden-handshake occurs after service & Hugo is an Oligarch of Newfoundlandistan. There is two sets of rules in Newfoundlandistan – One for Hugo & the Oligarchs and another for the Newfoundland taxpayer – taxpayer money is their personal Piggy-Banks to feed from the trough.

  16. Does Alderon Iron Ore Mining have a special power agreement? What rate will this private company obtain compared to Newfoundland ratepayer/taxpayer?

    Globe & Mail article
    "A vast development to the west of St. John’s promoted by a former premier and so known as “Dannistan” was approved despite the grave concerns of planners."
    Does this development have a special power agreement in place that is hidden from the Newfoundland taxpayers?

    It's the taxpayers government – freedom to information is the public concern.

  17. I could understand if we lost power because of an ice storm like Toronto ,but this blackout happened because it got cold,isn't that what happens when winter comes.let's face the truth,the power grid was not up to par,why…because they just didn't want to spend any more money on it ,so they got caught with their pants down and we all got caught in the dark.

  18. You are right about the media…I did simple Google searches and found out much more and I could write a better article and put together harder hitting questions…. Google these:

    Hydro's Holyrood Unit 1 January 11, 2013 Failure Root Cause …

    Jan 8, 2014 – Nalcor Energy

  19. Please stop spamming these links to my school e-mail address. I was not asked permission and I find it extremely disrespectful that my school/work e-mail is being clogged up with links to this nonsense. I'm far more concerned with education than I am Muskrat Falls conspiracies that can't be backed up with solid evidence.

    I ask you once and for all to cease and desist.

    – Brandon King