Guest Post by PlanetNL

– Atlantic Canada Energy Rates – the Deception of Parity

Muskrat Falls is concerned, the Government, regardless of party, has a clear
track record of getting the facts wrong. The trend continues as we transition
toward the operations and cost recovery phase of project.  The latest misguided gem – being relied upon
by NL Hydro at the General Rate Application hearings last week – is Premier
Dwight Ball’s stated rate target of 18 c/KWh for residential rates.  The Premier defends this as being comparable
to expected rates in the other Atlantic Canadian provinces.  It doesn’t take much research and insight to
demonstrate that the Premier couldn’t be more wrong on this issue.

go through each province one at a time.

Edward Island

PEI market has developed over 25% on-island wind-generated supply (second only
to Denmark in this measure) to displace on-island thermal generation while the
balance of electricity is purchased from New Brunswick Power.  Distributor, Maritime Electric (owned by
Fortis), uses a two-step rate design where the first 2000 KWh of a billing
month costs 14.37 c/KWh and anything in excess of that is 11.42 c/KWh. 

just two weeks ago, the Province of PEI is providing residential rebates of 10%
on the first block of power, bringing the effective rate on that 2000 KWh block
down to 12.97 c/KWh.  The new Clean
Energy Price Incentive is intended to promote electric usage (possibly to allow
more wind power development) but also applies to propane, firewood and wood

may infer that an electric heated home – the benchmark ratepayer most common
here in the Newfoundland Island Interconnected System – would likely experience
an average energy cost of about 12 c/KWh. 
No evidence could be found to suggest long-term rates might increase
more rapidly than inflation.

installed smart meters on all homes, Nova Scotia Power (owned by Emera) has
adopted time-of-use rates of 8.4 c/KWh on weekends and weeknights (11pm-7am) and
15.3 c/KWh during weekdays (7am-11pm). 
During December through February, most of the on-peak period is billed
at an even higher rate of 19.7 c/KWh.  We
can reason that our benchmark electric heated residential customer might
average about 13 c/kwh annually.

Scotia’s high on-peak rates accurately reflect the use of fossil fuel when high
cost thermal plants must be added to the grid to meet load demands.  Going forward, the import of Muskrat Falls
power will displace a large portion of NS thermal energy generation leading to
inevitable rate redesign for 2021 and beyond. 
Recovery of the $1.7B capital cost of the Maritime Link and $0.8B in the
Labrador Island Link are likely to raise the off-peak rates but the on-peak
rates should come considerably down as fossil fuel usage gives way to very cheap
Muskrat power.  We might reasonably expect
NS Power rates could step down about 10% overall post-2021.  The example customer above could yield an
average 12 c/kwh annual rate.

to the expected rate decreases of 2021, the NS Power Rate Stability Program
indicates rate increases of only 1.7% in 2017, 2018 and 2019; this following a
rate decrease in 2016 and no change in 2015. 
The pattern here is exceptionally stable with even brighter days ahead
thanks to the lucrative 35-year supply contract from Nalcor.

is the most directly comparable electricity market of the three, having a
single energy rate, no time-of-use metering, a similar proportion of thermal
energy production, and a similar reliance on domestic electric heating.  In fact, one could consider neighbouring New
Brunswick a highly relevant control sample: Nalcor and the NL Government
insisted thermal energy from Holyrood was such a huge risk that we urgently
needed an alternate energy source but NB Power made no major changes to its
energy supply and would continue a reliance on fossil fuel.

NB Energy and Utilities Board just approved this month a 0.88% increase in the
domestic energy rate to 10.91 c/KWh. 
Meanwhile NB Power touts a long-term rate stability plan that
anticipates 2% rate increases in each of the next 5 years and just 1% in each
of the following 5 years.  Part of the
residential rate increase is not for overall increased utility cost but to
reallocate more fairly the distribution of costs between residential and
commercial customers, as the latter have been historically subsidizing the
former.  Fundamental rate stability at or
below inflation is excellent.
Also related to this Post:

Truth Ruins Narrative for Williams, Marshall and Coady

Busted – Lie Exposed
survey of Atlantic Canada electricity rates and projections for 2021 and beyond
clearly shows a pattern of very stable and consistent rates where dramatic
increases are improbable.  Average
increases should be anticipated to be within the typical forecast consumer
price index for annual inflation of 1.7%. 
A reliable expectation for the average energy rate among the 3 provinces
in 2021 should be about 12 c/KWh.  

Clearly, Premier Ball could
not be more wrong in justifying our rate increase to 18 c/KWh on the basis of
expected parity with the other provinces of Atlantic Canada.  Equally, for NL Hydro executives to hold out
this argument on his behalf in hearings
the Public Utilities Board exposes the extent to which they are willing to play

Given a present Island Interconnected System domestic energy
rate of 11.39 c/kwh, there isn’t much room left for further rate increase over
the next three years to match the true average expected regional rate of 12
c/KWh.  If the Premier genuinely intends
to desire rate parity within the region, then only small inflationary rate
increases of no more than 2% per year are allowable to maintain parity.

The Premier should acknowledge his math was incorrect and the
true rate parity target he was aiming for is 12 c/KWh.  He should also direct Hydro to immediately
reduce their rate models before the PUB. 
If he is not capable of that, then how about admitting he just hasn’t
got a single idea up his sleeve about how to deal with the coming Muskrat
cost-recovery crisis instead of promoting malicious deception.


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. Ok Mr. Premier Ball and executives of NL hydro, you have been called out on your claims of power rates in the 3 maratime provinces, by PlanetNL. You can't be both right!!!! So cut the lies, and deception of the people. This is standard practice now, has become the norm in this province for the past decade and more of blatant lies about power requirements and rates and half truths to the people.The lies are of Trumpian porporation. That is accepted by Trumpie people because he did that all his life. Are you the same Mr. Ball…..lies all your life. If not belly up to the bar and produce your facts, and show where you are right and PlanetNL is wrong. We have had enough of this baloney. So come clean on power rates, or announce you won't be running in the next election, because we the people are looking for clean honest facts, and not deception, lies, half truths, spin, and snow jobs. That's the least the people should expect from their democratic elected politicians says average Joe.

    • what do Trump have to do with Ball's lies? you lost every bit of credibility in my opinion because you couldn't stick to fact, like Fox and CNN. Since you brought it up, I will correct you. Ball IS a liar, Trump is doing exactly what he promised to do in his platform.

  2. We understand that the enabling legislation for the Muskrat Project provided that rates would be set by government. The PUB was thereby removed from the rate setting responsibility. The present liberal government have said that they will cap power rates near 18 cents per kwh and not allow the rate to go to 23 cents per kwh that is required to recover the latest estimated costs for Muskrat power over a 50 year period. The difference is 5 cents per kwh which is expected to come from rate mitigation efforts. A small amount can come from export power sales of Muskrat power and from the sale of recall power from the upper CF. The remainder would have to come from taxpayers of the province through increased taxes or a reduction in government expenditures. Spin is spin but the reality is not contained in fake news.
    The PUB must be very conflicted these days??

    • As I understood it, the PUB is "removed from the rate setting responsibility" only with respect to what is required to meet the needs of the Muskrat take-or-pay contract.

      The rate needed to meet the Muskrat contract requirements is to be established by government and that in turn then gets factored into an island rate that will be determined by the PUB.

  3. You write that cheap MF power in Nova Scotia will affect their electricity rates. Is this a mistake? I thought all our local power was going under Cabot Strait leaving us with the expensive MF electricity. And was the 23 cents per kWh accepted once? Has it changed? Maybe it will be more once the turbines start up. If they start up.

    More smelly stuff, eh?

    • Hi Tor,

      Once electricity has been produced and injected in the grid, you can not distinguished it anymore. The electrons from power plant A are the same as electrons from power plant B.

      Here, Newfoundland had some power plant that were producing power at a low rate.
      MF as a central will add more of this power, but at a monstruous rate.
      The balance is power at still high rate.
      MF as a project promised NS power for free for a first amount, and very low price for a second block.

      So here, the point is that NS will receive cheap power from MF –project– much more than from MF –power plant–.

      Because a significant part of Newfoundland's pool of power will leave Newfoundland at a price tag below the average cost, the remaining power price must be increased even higher to compensate.

      As such, one can visualize the situation as low cost established power from the island being sent to NS while max price power from MF is what is used and paid by Newfoundlanders.

      Nice to talk with you,

  4. TOR: The power to Nova Scotia is cheap because Newfoundland is subsidizing it. Bear in mind that Muskrat was predicated on Islanders using only 40% of the power but paying 100% of the cost of the project. Nova Scotia receives 20% – equivalent – of Muskrat power in exchange for access over the Maritime Link plus the energy committed under the Energy Access Agreement which is priced for them at New England rates – which are very low. Every KWh that flows over the Maritime Link is either free or cheap. That is the deal that nearly everyone went gaga over at Sanction.

  5. If St.John's media spent half as much energy on questioning/ investigating these silly "Ball Lies" as they do on the basketball and hockey scene in St.John's, these lying politicians would think twice before opening their gobs feeding us our daily BS. Thank-you PlanetNL

  6. I don't care what people in other provinces are paying for electricity rates. I am only concerned with my bill. That's a cop out. When politicians try to tell us. Ww should be satisfied with our rates.

    • Hi Paul,

      Welcome to the community; first time I see you.

      I understand and fully agree with you. Different provinces manage their resources in a different way. One may wish to collect more revenues over one channel and less over another. One province may wish to finance Service A while another will prefer to finance Service B.

      So to compare a province on a single point like this with another province, that produces a very blurred picture.

      Unfortunately, it happens all the time. People / medias / politicians go big after a point being more / less in another province and ask to be the same here. Such a short sight can not be used to manage a province.

      You are very right and your position is a very good one.

      As for the local situation in Newfoundland, the problem is in the amount of money to collect at once from each and every citizen. No matter is it collected from power rate, special tax, fix cost for power meter or anything else. The problem is that Newfoundland was already in a gigantic structural deficit that last for years, was not even close to get out of it, already had the biggest debt per capita and now, just doubled that debt.

      What is now possible for Newfoundland to re-balance its budget, pay back its debt and pay back MF ? That is the big question…

    • But Heracles , if everyone thinks like Paul, they could all individually opt for efficient heat, heat pumps, more insulation etc, to keep their own bill low, and cripple revenue from Muskrat power sales on the island. You already condemned that idea.

    • Hercales31:

      There is no secret-every man, women and child based on average population of 500k owes about $500 every year for 57 years to pay for the capital costs of MF. It really doesn't matter if it comes from rates, taxes or other revenues-bottom line is we will have reduced services and less disposable income.

      What I cant understand is with the info available then why very few did the calculator exercise to figure out the impact-and those that did were outcasted for speaking of it.

      I agree, I cant see any possibility of me not being over-taxed and prevented from being wealthy for the remaining 30yrs of my life. Hopefully my kids who are 25 now will see wealth-MF is a multi-generation debt that wont have a pay back.

      NL'ers need to realize this-the money is gone, inquires etc wont bring it back.


    • Hi PF,

      After reading again Paul's post and you comment, I see that what he expressed can be interpreted in 2 ways.

      My first comment is that he is interested about his bill, refering to the reality of a Newfoundlander like any other (global aspect of the problem). But it can also be that he is interested only by his personnal bill, refering to the individual aspect of the problem.

      My first comment is about the first understanding : He, as a Newfoundlander, is interested in what a Newfoundlander's bill is and not what is it in NS or NB. For that, it is better because considering only one part of a system frequently return a wrong picture. I understood it this way because the article is written this way (what a generic citizen from each province will experience).

      Your comment is appropriate when reading Paul's post as being from his individual point of view instead of the point of view of a generic Newfoundlander.

      In that case, he is free to handle his own situation the way he wish. He can leave, he can wait for the terms of the bailout, he can get ready to face the bill by any personnal initiative like efficiency, he can put his head in the sand and try to forget (luckily, for posting here, I doubt he chose that way; good for him), or anything he wish.

      Without a bailout, efficiency works against the community. Once the bailout is defined, efficiency may turn back as good for the community as it is good for the individual. Should one bet on a bailout and get himself ready for an efficiency program he expect will be helpful, he is free to take such a bet. The thing is, before turning efficiency in a official program, the Take-Or-Pay contract must be dealt with.

      Thanks for offering a different view from the same text,

    • Hi Peng2,

      I agree completely with your reply. As for why people refused to see it when it was time to prevent MF, my feeling is that the answer is in the anti-Quebec traditionnal thinking that has been amplified during decades to build political power. Hate is very easy to create, to develop and to focus. The problem is, once there is too much, it will explode and can destroy anything.

      To bypass Quebec was presented as an heroic act, something to be proud of, a victory the size of the longest wars. When you have such an emotional component in the decision, it is almost impossible for the rational side to revert it. The reason is simply because emotions are not rational…

      UG will never acknowledge Qc – HQ as being good for Newfoundland (Please UG, make me wrong here!!!!!!!)

      People will never accept that the 1969 is a win – win (was if Newfoudland's part is to be traded against MF fiasco) and that the contract was designed in a way to ensure Win – Win no matter what the price of electricity will be.

      People will not stop complaining about being small, neglected by Feds and more.

      Until these emotions are dealt with, Newfoundland will suffer from them.

      Nice to talk with you,

    • Hi Heracles31:
      I disagree that your perception that the majority of NLers hate QC. It was one,egomaniacle little man who bullied his way into making everyone think that QC is the villian and we would get the upper hand on QC bv deloping MF in the first place and secondly going the anglosaxon route to bring the power to market. He and those in the know at the time knew that MF was NOT the cheapest alternative yet he bullied his way into deceiving the people of NL. As Winston has said many times, efficiency was never on the table and other alternatives wer immediately taken off the table.

    • Hi Wayne,

      The MF fiasco will surely help to reduce that anti-Quebec way of thinking, but should you need evidence, I can point you to multiple documents exposing it.

      Now that people see what is a failed hydro plant project, they start to acknowledge that UC was not that bad, but before the fiasco, basically no one was ready to accept UC was done porperly.

      The documents for the Atlantic Link (project to sell power to Massachussetts)
      A report from Royal Commission on Renewing and Strenghtening our (ie Newfoundland's) Place in Canada – Power Politic and Questions of Political will
      The origin of a coming crisis : Renewal of the UC contract ; by Feehan & Baker

      All of them are anti-Quebec, some almost at 100%.

      They say the 25 years extension was HQ abusing the context of a vulnerable CFLCo; so is the absence of escalator; that by refusing to let CFLCo build its own power corridor over Quebec, Qc and the Feds deprived CFLCo from their bargaining power and more.

      That anti-Quebec speech is what convinced the Supreme Court of Canada that the Reversion Act was colourable legislation aimed against the Power Contract instead of being a legitimate act. The anti-Quebec position was detailed officially in different governments documents and official speeches.

      So Yes, the anti-Quebec way of thinking, up to MF at least, has always been very present.

      Nice to talk with you,

    • Heracles31, your comment at 00:53 is spot on… cynical and incompetent NL politicians for decades have used QC as a scapegoat to distract from their s=crew-ups by stirring the rabble into a frenzy against QC.

      DW himself was duped into the same psychological rut by the politicians he grew up with, which explains why he interpreted the MRF debacle as a "victory" over QC.

      What a most unfortunate circumstance… the hate has finally exploded and now it has destroyed the province of NL.

  7. From VOCM… "Still Lots of Good Reasons to Live in NL, says Hawkins"

    No doubt one of them is that no matter how incompetent, dimwitted, or dodgy an NL politician might be, an NL politician will still receive a generous pension compliments of the electrically-destitute with which to fund said politician's Florida condo.

    And if Hawkins feels compelled to make such a statement anyway, that in itself demonstrates how dire the situation is becoming.

    This crowd truly is enough to give even a fish the dry heaves.

    • Wasn't Al Hawkins on the board of directors of Nalcor at or around the time of the Muskrat project sanction or thereafter, while the mayor of Grand Falls? No wonder he doesn't want to get into how the project will affect rates. He should be called to testify at the inquiry.

    • Nalcor Board 2012 & 2013

      Terry Styles (chair)
      Leo Abbass
      Al Hawkins
      Erin Breen
      Ed Martin
      Tom Clift
      Ken Marshall
      Gerald Shortall

      And this:
      Al Hawkins, the mayor of Grand Falls-Windsor officially announced on Thursday he would be seeking the Liberal nomination for Grand Falls-Windsor-Green Bay South.

      Hawkins — who was widely expected to join the race — also said he has always been a Liberal, even though the governing Tories has appointed him to the boards of Nalcor Energy and other agencies, and even some Tories had assumed he was one of their own.

    • Terry Styles, isn't or wasn't he a beer distributor from the west coast? A person well qualified, no doubt, to make a decision on the Muskrat sanction?? Leo Abbass, the mayor of HV-Goose Bay around this time and no doubt a cheer leader for the MF project to go ahead regardless of cost to the people of NL. Ken Marshall, a friend of Mr Williams, some say?? How did we get here?? The inquiry might shed some light.

  8. It is pathetic that they can lie with impunity.

    As an individual, it makes no sense to use and pay for energy you don't need. I installed a heat pump, solar hot water and drainwater heat recovery a few years ago and it saved me well over a hundred a month, so the system is paying off quickly plus I enjoy warm winters, cooling and dehumidification. If the Gov of NL adds a fixed energy charge so that all rate payers pay whether they use the power or not, then I will go off-grid with Solar PV. All this will speed up the inevetable showdown.

    I hope everybody fights back. The debt cannot be repaid – so something drastic will happen. If we do nothing, then the federal government will do what suits the majority of Canadians – perhaps the MF debt will be a lien on our future oil revenues or transfer payments. That way they can say the bailout didn't cost the other provinces anything – after all, why should NL be rewarded for bad behavior? We don't have enough voters to make any difference at a national level so we have very little leverage as beggars.

    I will also support any political movement that wants to fight the system. We do not have to be abused by lying sociopahts or behave like serfs. We could for example, default on the debt, threaten to leave Canada and negotiate a fresh start. Iceland might have some advice. We would have territorial claims to a vast area of ocean, oil, marine fish and could operate a free trade zone halfway between the US and European markets. China could invest in us – we could have free trade with Russia and China. We could directly control immigration. People who immigrated wouldn't be leaving for Toronto at the first possibility. Lots of possibilities, one of which is that after a lot of drama, we might just stay with Canada but negotiate a larger cut of the offshore oil equal to what Alberta gets on land, default only on Muskrat Falls and write it off as regime / odious debt and see some of the MF perpetrators jailed.There are lots of possibilities. If we do nothing, I suspect much of the population will take the easy route and migate to the mainland and NL will be federally supported territory like Nunavut

  9. Heracales31 – Why is it you regularly try to goad us bloggers into the “Newfoundlanders-all-hate-Quebecers” conversation every day? Why do you want to pick a fight and assume all Newfoundlanders are “anti-Quebec”? I don’t think many would disagree with you there has been some contentious feelings between NL and Qc stemming back from the CF agreement, but man, it is 2018 and most people in Newfoundland today were only babies then! 95% of our super-trusting population has little idea of what is happening, which is another issue. You have to stop the “I want to be hated speech” and approach this forum with an open mind. As a Newfoundlander, I have many friends and business associates from Quebec, and although my French is terrible, we all get along fine. Ultimately, we all have similar challenges and similar goals in life, and above all, we are all Canadian. And, among my many fellow Newfoundlanders in business they see our situation much the same as me, and I don’t know any “Quebec-haters”. We have some unique challenges in NL right now, and some corrupt and misguided and cowardly people in power, but which province does not?? We are going to do the best we can going forward, and we don’t really need you trying to rub our noses in the dirt every day telling us how racist we are towards Quebecers – give it up. You behave like a Russian troll. See a therapist soon. Be Canadian.

    • anon 14:53 "among my many fellow NLers in business they see our situation much the same as me, and I don’t know any Quebec-haters”

      Wow, really glad to see you don't know any Quebec-haters in your business / personal cycles. There's hope it seems.

      Unfortunately, I haven't noticed any of that in English-Canadian medias (and their adjoining commentators). The least antagonist articles still mention about "one sided" UC contract etc.

      Even my Ottawa's (English speaking) colleagues seem to follow the same lines of thought – Qc abusing poor NL with this "one sided" contract. (Not surprisingly as they only read English language medias – maybe including UG…). Now, it gets worst if they are Newfoundlanders. (I'm however working on their cases, with some success…)

      (I must agree that my long time personal NL friends (Ex-Mil) were always quite open for discussions – and beer… 😉 )

      But the above is strictly my personal take and might not be representative.

    • Slight correction and disclaimer:

      All my long time personal NL friends (most Ex-Mil) are always quite open/very happy for discussions, debate and beer – and necessarily in this order…

    • Anon 14:53, Winston, AJ and probably many others,

      Here are few examples of what I refer to when I talk about the anti-Quebec way of thing in Newfoundland:

      Frank Moores :"It's the biggest giveaway in history," says Newfoundland Premier Frank Moores, vowing to reopen the contract.

      when BRINCO, using the Upper Churchill model, made a formal offer to the Moores’ government to develop the Gull Island and Muskrat Island sites. The Moores’ administration refused to accept the idea of being tied into a long-term contract with Hydro-Quebec.

      By the mid-1970s, negotiations had become increasingly complex due to inflationary pressures, the energy crisis and the overt inequities of the 1969 Churchill Falls Contract.

      On this occasion Moores’ Minister of Mines and Energy, Brian Peckford, was only informed of the Premier’s plans just previous to the proposed announcement. Peckford emphatically rejected the idea of giving up in perpetuity any rights to seek redress of the infamous 1969 Contract. His emphatic objections were sufficient to thwart the proposed deal.

      Brian Peckford :
      Lalonde said that the juggernaut during the negotiations was Peckford’s obstinate commitment to the settlement of old grievances related to the Upper Churchill before any discussion could ensue on new developments

      …the Peckford administration to try another judicial tactic. This came in the form of the Water Rights Revision Act

      In less than 72 hours the Newfoundland and Labrador government dismissed the offer as nothing more than a token gesture. Duhaime said that the quick rejection of Quebec’s offer was at the same time both regrettable and upsetting. Newfoundland and Labrador officials broke down Quebec’s aggregated figures and argued that Quebec’s offer consisted of an additional $2.5 million per year from the lease and access to 380 to 500 MW of power. The Newfoundland and Labrador government was prepared to accept a 50:50 split.

      Clyde Wells
      Wells’ plans, however, were dependant upon secrecy and he asked his caucus members to refrain from talking publicly about the proposals. He knew that, as discussed above, the earlier attempt by the Peckford administration to pass the Water Rights Revision Act ultimately failed due to statements made external to the actual government legislation.

      Brian Tobin:
      Tobin threatened to “pull the plug” on Churchill Falls and deny Hydro-Quebec a key source for electricity exports

      DW ; 2010 ; "They don't want us to go through Quebec, and now they don't want us to go anywhere," Williams said.

      KD :“Truly, in this province, people will be prepared to see that water run to the sea rather than try to find some way to deal with Quebec if we have to go right to 2041 without any redress,” said Dunderdale

      UG : Let’s be clear. Quebec is not our friend.

      J.P. Feehan : The perceived injustice of the contract resonates in Newfoundland political culture, being characterized as another case where its resources have been exploited by outsiders. Few, if any, would disagree with the opinion, expressed in 2003, by the provincial Royal Commission on Renewing and Strengthening Our Place in Canada that the outcome of the contract is inequitable.

      Should you need more, I can give you more. Considering I quoted most of your leaders, please find me quotes that are positive towards Quebec / HQ and from ranks as high as the ones I gave you.

      If you can not, then you will realize what I am talking about concerning the anti-Quebec culture in NL.

      Royal Commission on Renewing and Strengthening Our Place in Canada; Mars 2003
      The Origins of a Coming Crisis: Renewal of the Churchill Falls Contract

    • And should you need to understand better the history of the Power Contract, here are the minutes of a meeting between Brinco & CFLCo from 1968 :

      Mr. McParland emphasized that there had been three fundamental changes in the deal since the signing of the Letter of Intent. These were :
      (i) The cost of the project was now estimated to exceed $900 million, whereas the estimate in 1966 was in the range of $800 – 850 million. As a consequence of this, the power price was substantially higher. The savings which Hydro-Quebec envisaged as a result of their buying Churchill power versus development of their own projects were not as substantial. Moreover, their transmission line costs alone were now estimated at $569 million versus $400 million in 1966.
      (ii) They had been asked and had agreed to give an unlimited completion guarantee, which was deemed an essential factor to the financing.
      (iii) The financial mix was vastly different than that contemplated in 1965 and 1966 and particularly the bridging position was extended.
      Arising from recent negotiations, there were five points which Hydro-Quebec insisted upon. In presenting these five points to the meeting, Mr. McParland reported that the demands of Hydro-Quebec in this regard had been substantially reduced from those originally presented; that each of the points had been discussed extensively; and that Hydro-Quebec's position in respect thereto was very firm.
      The points were as follows:
      1. Renewal of the contract
      Hydro-Quebec wished to be able to project a lower mill rate than the present draft of the contract permitted. Due to increased costs and escalation the effect of the present term of 44 years from first delivery or 40 years from completion indicated an average mill rate considerably in excess of that contemplated in 1966. Accordingly, they had requested a 25 year extension of the contract on a flat mill rate basis suggested at two mills per kilowatthour. They wished this to be in the form of an option. This would produce a gross revenue of $60 65 million per annum. There would be no debt outstanding. Should CFLCo attempt to qualify the rate by the addition of escalators or make any provision for its tax position, the purpose of the extension would be defeated. Although the Churchil [sic] project was marginally more attractive then [sic] nuclear power today, it was conceivable that it would not be in 40 years’ time. It was obvious that a commitment on the extension was preferable to an option and it also appeared desirable to endeavour to have the mill rate expressed in either U.S. or Canadian funds at the option of' CFLCo in order to afford the greatest protection against serious devaluation of the Canadian dollar. […]
      Mr. McParland informed the meeting that in respect to the above-mentioned matters, although considerable negotiations had taken place, no commitment had been made to Hydro-Quebec, nor was Hydro-Quebec able to be absolutely firm on these points.
      The meeting unanimously endorsed the positions taken by the negotiating team as outlined to the meeting and authorized them to proceed to conclude the negotiation of the Power Contract accordingly.

    • Hercules and others, while you are doing your selective research, look up Jean Lesage position in the 50's and 60's, and even a tougher stand by his successor Daniel Johnson. As for me, I don't have to do much research, as I lived through the daily events occurring at the time. Lasage, premier of Quebec, immovable position was, no power lines would would be built through Quebec other than those built and owned by Quebec, despite being contrary to the constitution. Also, the only power that would flow through Quebec, would be bought at the Quebec boarder. That was his and premier johnson's position. The negotiations would occur for over a decade, and it was determined that the maratime route was not a fincincial viable option. So in effect UC would become a stranded asset, unless it was built under these conditions. In other words, Quebec held the ace in the hole. With the only transmission route possible, Quebec could and did make any demands that they wanted with regards to length of contract, and power rates that would be paid at the boarder. The only other solution was for the national government to take control, under the constitution and force a power line through Quebec. Much like Trudeau did a few weeks ago with the pipeline through BC in Alberta's favor, or in the national interest. Smallwood discussed the very same thing with the federal govt., including PM Pearson. Joey put it in writing, but seems he never officially delivered the letter to Pearson, because Pearson told him, it would literally split the nation into, and strife within the country for years, even if the nation survived. Lesage and Johnson held firm in their positions. Will continue in a following comment. As think I am running out of publishing space on my PC. ….thanks, AJ.

    • Hello AJ, I liked what Bernard Lahey had to say about this, on Dec 12th, 2016.
      => And no, I'm not Bernard using Ex-Mil handle 😉

      "The popular narrative is that Quebecers were able to hold Newfoundland hostage by refusing to allow the transmission of electricity through its territory. The truth is a bit more complicated. Granted, Quebec was not interested in ceding thousands of kilometres of its land for the construction of high-voltage transmission wires to allow Churchill Falls corp (CFLco), Brinco’s newly minted subsidiary, to compete with Quebec in its export markets. Go figure.

      Moreover, a few thousand kilometres of high voltage transmission wires are not a pretty sight. How would you react if your neighbour asked you to run them through your back yard?

      There is also the question of who would pay for the construction, maintenance and operation of the lines. Transmission costs totalled $500 million, roughly equal to half of Newfoundland’s annual GDP. Clearly Brinco did not have the financial means to undertake such a project on its own. Meanwhile, the federal government had no interest in intervening in a sector of provincial responsibility to finance a massive electricity transportation grid when neither Ontario, nor the Americans had any interest."

    • Smallwood in the interest of nation building, and the termoil and strife it would cause and the complete fracturing of the nation, did not officially ask Pearson to force the transmission line . Pearson also said he could not guarantee the security of the transmission towers, themselves, as they would be demolished mainly by the seperates in Quebec at the time. So it was under these conditions that negotiations took place, with Quebec in the drivers seat and in control of the hostage seat. What chance was there to be a fair and balanced negotiations, when one party was holding a gun to the others head. I would also ask, who was the better man, province, or people, who was the better nation builders, who were the better Canadians, the one who would split the child into, ( the country, guess you are familiar with the bible story), or the one who would say, " no Mr. Prime Minister of Canada, I will not ask you to force the piwer line". That my friend was the situation and conditions under which the contract of the late 60's was negioatiated. And never accuse me of being brainwashed Williams, Tobin, Wells, Smallwood or any others. I lived through it. So, you continue doing your selective research about, "Quebec all good, Newfoundland all bad". You my friend is the one that is brain washing and hate mongering on a daily basis. We believe in a strong Quebec, a strong Newfoundland, and a strong prosperous United Canada. That is why we are usually conciliatory in most of our comments, as opposed to yours, hateful comments, and daily bashing about Newfoundland sovereignty. So get a life man, become a proud Canadian, as we have become despite our small place in this confederation. Cheers, Joe blow, average Joe, AJ.

  10. Folks; We know that the fundamental cause for the project management failure on Muskrat, was the decision to opt for EPC methodology. The Owner of the project, (presumed to be NALCOR), needs to respect the risks involved in becoming its own constructor. Added to risks involved in Design and Construction is the fact that NALCOR had relatively little bench strength and experience to take on the role as Owner/Constructor of this complex project. The General Inquiry will be a failure if it does not establish how the Project Director and Board placed the whole Budget/Cost/Time objectives and the shareholder/public interest at such risk.

    • Excellent comment anony: 14:59. Agree totally with you. Thanks for writing in such a conciliatory manner. I usually think that way. But I usually given in to my most basic gut feelings of "fight fire with fire", or to give you as good as you send. So I have been refraining as of late in writing that way. And as I have said before we are no shrinking violets, but have to refrain sometimes, in the name of civility, and write in a conciliatory manner. But know there are lots of nlanders that could come out at any time with both guns blazing. So we refrain. But as we all know, the new warfare method is via social media, and the Internet. And your anology of the Russian troll as they interfere in the American, and indeed all western democracies to sow discord among the people is the new order of business and warfare. Hope to God we are better than that as Canadians within Canada. Thanks, average Joe.

    • My neighbour, a cancer survivor, visited a few hours ago, excited to tell my wife her morning actitity :
      " We, the Dragons, were out to lunch with this lovely man from Montreal and his wife. He bought property at Paradise, where the old window manufacturing plant was, and makoing it a commercial area. Someone suggested to him to invest in Nlfd, and suggested Paradise area, and he said "Paradise? Where is that" So he explained to the Dragons that his interests in not just making money, but they also contribute to charities. So they worked with the Paradise town council and asked what charities they would recommend , and the Dragons was at the top of the list. They told him they were the only Dragons that have actually built their own racing boat. Anyway , he does not have a French Accent, and his wife is Oriental, and both very nice. And he informed us that he is donating 10,000 dollars to the Dragons each year, and also that amount to the Rovers. He said he has been really pleased with the welcome he gets here and people so friendly"
      I told my neighbour that I must report this to Heracles… wife explained to her that Heracles is a guy from Quebec on Uncle Gnarley where they discuss Muskrat Falls.
      So Heracles , not much Quebec haters in that neck of the woods. Nor was that Montreal guy afraid to come to Nfld……even brought his wife along. I could probably get his name if you doubt this story.

    • Hi Winston,

      Thanks for telling me and I did not forgot about June next year. I still have the intention to tell you if indeed I manage to find the time to go in Newfoundland.

      I posted above a serie of quotations that reflects what I described as the anti-Quebec philosophy in Newfoundland. If indeed Quebec is so appreciated by the population, then how and why do you elect only people who never stop bashing against Qc ? They have been elected and re-elected. The Royal Commission is supposed to be a very objective process. Still, leaders and Royal Commission are all about how Qc abused NL and more.

      The last explanation I can think about is that people in Newfoundland do not vote or do it without understanding what they are doing. If that is the case, then indeed Newfoundland must loose its sovereignty and be under the authority of an overlord because they don't exerce their democracy. What's the point being in a democracy if you do not act accordingly ?

      So, the challenge is open to you too : can you find me quotes from NL high authorities that are pro-Qc / pro-HQ ?

  11. Tor – can we put Heracles in a wheel and make him generate electricity? Holy GD that guy can keep going and going, obviously to entertain himself. I'll take Winston's daily minisplit updates over his wild monologues any day.

    As for MF turbines, unit 1 commissioning is Fall 2019 and unit 4 October 2020. Units 2 and 3 in between. Then we can all do the Ed Martin happy dance.

    • I don’t hate anybody, but all my socialist instincts are mystified why QC and HQ would rather dig in their heels over profits and some misguided righteousness rather than cooperate and collaborate in righting an inequitous agreement.

      Is this how partners in a confederation act?

      Snottiness and arrogance are demeaning and counter productive regardless of the cause or reason.

      Greed is bad karma.

    • "Snottiness and arrogance are demeaning and counter productive regardless of the cause or reason."

      Wow Tor, those are big words.
      We, as commentators, might sometime use inaccurate wordings in our communications – some more than others I suspect 😉 Regrettably, comments might sometime sound paternalist, or worst. I don't believe those were intentional.

      Anyways, Bernard Lahey, a respectful and knowledgeable retired HQ executive, wrote an article on UC.

      It would be great to obtain your opinion on what he wrote, and hear if you are still "mystified why QC and HQ would rather dig in their heels over profits."


    • Hi Tor,

      For the first 40 years, the UC project's value has been shared about 50 – 50. True the 50 share for Newfoundland is mostly as an asset while HQ's is cash, but still, that is about a 50 – 50 value. If you would rather not have an asset and have cash instead, you can always sell that asset and it will turn into cash.

      For the second 40 years, the benefit will also splitted about 50:50, because the contract will have expired and CFLCo will have it all.

      After that second 40 years, the benefit will be 100% CFLCo.

      Also, as demonstrated in the different court cases and the Royal Commission from Newfoundland, numerous times HQ offered to develop the remaining of the Churchill River in a way that would consider the reality of the previous agreement. It is Newfoundland who refused anything and everything but a complete appropriation of the project.

      So really, Qc – HQ is digging in their heels over profits and some misguided righteoussness rather than cooperating and collaborating in righting an inequitous agreement ?

      Considering Qc – HQ made many offers that were all turned down and that the contract has been 50 – 50 for the first 40 years and will stay 50 – 50 for the second 40 years, I think that you are 0 in 2 here : HQ did a lot trying to sustain CFLCo / Newfoundland and the UC project as it is is not an inequitous agreement.

    • The people NL bought 2/3 of the CF asset that Brinco had owned around 1973 and the total asset was fully paid for in 2016 after 40 years. So the argument that HQ paid for the total asset and is giving it to us is ludicrous. Our friends in Quebec are either misinformed or just don't know enough about the deal and the need for it to change.

    • =>correction of above – sorry AJ 😉

      Anon 12:35, you seem to be a lost cause. You've been presented with tons of facts on how that 1969 contract was a win – win agreement then, and is still a win – win today.

      Something I wrote here (Nov 2016)

      "A big step in any Nfld/Quebec reconciliation would be to re-establish 1969 contract facts, and explain it properly to everyone.

      This anger (and the general victim culture) in the mind of people actually diminishes entrepreneurship (I believe), and encourages political knee jerk reactions (like MF)."

    • So you don't agree with the 'True" facts that I presented at 12:35. That's the trouble with you guys, you don't accept true facts even when they stare you in the face from documentation. Must be a Quebecois thing.

    • Anon 15h45;

      So, how much NL paid to nationalise Brinco (thus its 66% of CFLCo) in 1973 (or 1974)?

      Now, compare that to how much HQ paid for UC (the interests rate guarantees, the 3 x 735kv transmission line, power purchase etc.).

      The firm power purchase commitment by HQ (must pay the power, even if not taken or not needed or the transmission lines fail or water is "spilled" and what not) ensured CFLCo could repay its "mortgage", and then some afterward.


      So I fail to see your point.

      Which word don't you understand in:

      ==> CFLCo will totally own & control all UC assets in 2041, debt free. <==

      And, really, what is not factual in the above.

    • Hey Anon,

      True, CFLCo is owned about 65% Newfoundland / 35% HQ. So the UC power plant is owned in that proportion.

      If you pointed this to demonstrate that Newfoundland will not have 100% of the benefit after 2041, fair enough. But know that before CFLCo can distribute its benefits internaly, it must pay 2 different dividends to the government. One is 8% and the other is 22%. So Newfoundland ends up with 30% + 65%*70 = 76%, so HQ with 24. Lets round this to 75% Newfoundland and 25% HQ.

      The point I made is this :
      Day 1 : Brinco invested 60 millions and HQ, 115 millions
      Day 1 : Brinco has been able to contract its gigantic debt thanks for HQ having signed the Power Contract by which HQ was forced to pay back all the money needed to re-imburse the debt under virtually all conditions.

      As such, Day 1, HQ put twice as much equity as Brinco in the power plant alone, plus it engaged itself to pay for the entire debt, either by taking UC' power or paying its price tag (Take or Pay contract).

      The power plant has no value withtout transmission lines. HQ paid over 500 millions alone for them.

      So Day-1, Brinco put 60 millions and HQ, over 600 millions + engaged itself for about 6 billions.

      Day-2, Newfoundland bought back Brinco. Still, the reality Newfoundland bought was nothing more than the reality that Brinco had.

      So as for inital investment, that is one thing. What the final outcome is another. Same for Emera and the Maritime Link : Ownership is now Emera and it will turn Newfoundland's at the end of the contract.

      Initial investment was 60 millions Brinco ; 600 millions HQ + 6 billions HQ under the Take-Or-Pay contract.

      Outcome as defined by the power contract is CFLCo owner of a fully paid for power plant, CFLCo being 65% Brinco and 35% HQ.

      Newfoundland chose to pay 160 millions to get Brinco's share of the outcome of the contract. What it means is that Newfoundland will be the owner of a fully paid power plant, at no risk, for 160 millions. Considering the asset is valued to about 20 billions, that is a great return on investment!

    • Hi Unknown,

      Newfoundland is still a free province, so you are free to stay or leave. Unfortunately, until the government tells the population how the situation will be handled, people are kept in the dark.

      What is sure is that statu quo is not an option. Newfoundland will default on its debt sooner than later if things keep going how they did for last many years.

      Because statu quo is not an option and a silent government looks like statu quo, there are people who take the problem in their own hands. For many, that indeed means leaving the province. For others, it means trying to shield themselves from expected power rates and taxes. For yet some others, it means to wait and watch. For sure, some are dreaming and not even watching, but this is surely not the smart way to manage your life in any situation.

      Etienne and I had a discussion about this not so long ago… I highly doubt the government will order and execute an evacuation. It would cost even more than keeping the "refugees" on the Rock.

      Should Newfoundland end up in the situation as Detroit City, the harsh reality will push all people with enough money out of the province. If it is still time to avoid what happened to Detroit, then the situation may end as not as bad.

      What is sure is that the longer the government will keep people in the dark about the bailout / bankruptcy, the more damage they will do to the province and the harder it will be to fix everything.

      The best be for you and Newfoudland,

    • I would direct you all to Hans Rosling’s FACTFULNESS, in it you will find the path towards reconciliation and understanding.

      It teaches how true facts are obscured by our biases and inherited world view.

      Critical thinking and talking based on facts, not perceptions and ideological stances can be applied to the MF debacle.

      To change the world, change your attitude and get the true facts, not fake news and bluster.

  12. In 1981 then Prime Minister of Canada, Brian Mulrooney said, "The present contract between Quebec and Newfoundland for electric power from Churchill Falls does not reflect in any way the new economic and energy realities that have developed since the OPEC crisis. The inequality and absence of fair play in the contract in question is obvious. Simple decency and the most elementary spirit of justice demand its immediate renegotiation."
    We are still waiting for that decency and justice!

    • On December 12th, 2016, Bernard Lahey replied to you;

      "As for Brian Mulroney's comments, I certainly don't think he ever repeated those comments in french. I don't know how to define what common decency is in a financial agreement. If I understand correctly, a long-term fixed price contract is fine as long as prices don't change very much. I can guarantee you that if those were the terms at the outset, HQ would have left the table and developed James Bay in the 1960's rather than in the inflationary 1970's. Moreover, the bond holders who financed CFL co with long term debt lost their shirt as interest rates rose to 20% through the 1970's. I don't remember CFL co offering to share the pain. Enough said."

    • We are still waiting for simple decency and the most elementary spirit of justice. The question now is whether the supreme court of Canada can deliver the justice?

      All the best to you and your friend Bernard and have a nice day.

    • "We are still waiting for simple decency and the most elementary spirit of justice"

      The same can be said from HQ I guess.

      Can we go back in time and no have signed that 1969 contract?

      This way HQ would have built James Bay earlier (and cascading forward the others projects waiting in the pipeline), escaping the steep construction inflation years (late 70s/early 80s).

      And then, HQ would still enjoy/own all of this cheap installed power. And losing losing any, past 2041…

      You can't have it both ways, really.


      Just saying

    • Tor Fosnaes: Wow. Just plain wow. You openly admit (Today, 14:35) that you still have ill feelings directed against Quebec and HQ despite there being, as Ex-military Engr and Heracles have shown above, no factual basis whatsoever for harboring said ill feelings. And yet you encouraged us (11:19) to face "true facts". Err, why should we? I mean, since you yourself quite openly admit that your own ill-feelings remain unchanged by factual correction…

      If you were mugged in the streets of Saint-John's today by some petty criminal (named Johnny Smallwood or Dennis Williams or whatever) who, just before bashing your head in, told you that this mugging was entirely Quebec's fault, whom would you report to the police? The mugger, or Quebec?

      I am really beginning to wonder whether I am and have been wasting my time posting here: Increasingly, it seems to me, "Quebec" is simply the Newfoundland equivalent of "Emmanuel Goldstein" in George Orwell's "1984" (i.e. A bogeyman whose permanent incomprehensible evil destructiveness and ill-will explains everything wrong with Oceania/NL and keeps the bulk of the inhabitants of Oceania/NL from asking questions about its own elites' position and decisions) rather than an actual neighboring province inhabited by live flesh-and-blood people who are as fully human as you…

      Anonymous (12:47): If "simple decency and the most elementary spirit of justice" is what you are after, and its absence something you deplore, no need to look to Quebec: Have a look at your own elite, which (if Muskrat Falls and its fiscal outcome is anything to go by) seems to have zero decency and no sense of justice whatsoever.

      And as long as a majority of ordinary people like you keep taking the bait, keep blaming Quebec for everything, leaving the NL elite off the hook, do not expect things in NL ever to improve.

    • Oh, Ethienne, and Heracles, you two are extreme as to discussing Quebec haters. What percentage of comment on UG show hatred toward the people of Quebec. You are almost like Russia in the USA trying to provoke hatred.
      And here we have a Quebec company investing 25 million , will create 450 service jobs, and a win win situation. And if he feared the raw emotions of Nflders to hate Quebec people, would he come here and speak so highly of his warm welcome?
      Now , my moral learning says I should love the people of Quebec as my neighbour, though they may have a different culture, and I believe that. I cannot speak for other Nflders as to their degree of love for you, but I see or hear of little hatred.
      You guys speak about not living in the past. If there was more of anti Quebec in the past, then that is past , not present. You constantly dwell on references to the past. Move on.
      That we have politicians that stoke anti Quebec, no doubt. We last statesmen that can bring more win win.
      If the Supreme Court says the deal is unfair and compensation due, fine, if not , also fine. Waste of time and opportunities lost.
      Now Ireland has still the anti British with slogans on walls, this going on since 1688. I have never in my life seen a anti Quebec slogan in Nfld, maybe I go to the wrong places.
      I don't think Ex military fear Nflders that may hate them?
      So, say something more constructive…… Bombardier may set up a plant here? Not likely, but do you think that would be opposed?

    • Hi PF,

      I went back that far in the past to show that the anti-Quebec brainwashing has been in place for that long. DW and KD are not so far and very actual to the entire MF project. UG's post is less than 1 years old. I invited him many time to express something positive about Qc during last months and still as of today, he did not.

      Etienne posted you an article that is also less than 1 year old.

      Because you also asked for quotes from comments sections of this blogs, here are some for you…

      Anonymous9 April 2018 at 11:53
      The real story here is that Daniel actually sabotaged the Federal PC's in NL through ABC, so that there would be nobody of Mckay's stature from NL to stand in his and HQ's way of stealing CF down the road. Daniel and HQ played the long game!!!!

      WA ; 14 April 2018 at 18:43
      Who could blame Quebec for waiting until Nfld has its back against the wall?

      But because WA also wrote this (and few others), lets forgive him…
      THis is also good will for HQ.

      Anonymous ; 12 May 2018 at 09:34
      Could SNC have cooked up the facts to suit Nalcor and GNL's wishes? There may well be solid evidence revealed at the Inquiry to support this. Did this Quebec company at any time consider the long term ramifications for failure and the resulting opportunity for Quebec and HQ?

      But I have to admit that, as Ex-mil posted in one of his comments, the situation greatly improved in the blog. To show me, he linked an old post from 2016, one that was all about the same complains the have been repeating for decades.

      So from this community, I agree that the anti-Quebec philosophy is dissipating slowly and that the situation improves at a regular rate. Great for everyone! Lets ensure this progress will keep growing and will reach beyond this blog.

      If that is the only good thing that MF brings to Newfoundland, it will have been a very high price to pay for clearing the province of this hate speech, but still something good. Unfortunately, it really looks like MF was motivated by that philosophy and it is only once the boondoggle exploded that people started to understand that and to change their mindset.

      So lets keep working together, improve the mentality and positive attitude, and focus on problem solving.

      Nice to talk with you,

  13. PF:

    First, my handle is "Etienne", not "Ethienne".

    Second, Heracles gave you (yesterday, 21:56) a series of anti-Quebec quotes by various individuals, including several NL Premiers, and later (same day, 22:21) threw the gauntlet: if indeed the anti-Quebec sentiment he and I and others claim to detect is in fact non-existent in NL, as some commentators here at Uncle Gnarley's are claiming, then where are the pro-Quebec quotations from the mouths of NL politicians and celebrities? Presumably, if there is no such thing as generalized anti-Quebec sentiment in NL, then there should be as many public declarations of pro-Quebec sentiment as of anti-Quebec sentiment, shouldn't there?

    The ball is in your hands: either acknowledge that anti-Quebec sentiment indeed exists in NL, or point to the pro-Quebec public statements which must exist if generalized anti-Quebec sentiment in NL does not. It's one or the other: in this instance, the law of the excluded middle, AKA "Tertium non datur", applies.

    Third, here is another instance of recent anti-Quebec rhetoric which even an NL journalist found excessive:

    Key quote here:

    "I’d hate to think Muskrat Falls was predicated primarily on a desire to give Quebec the finger; in other words, on passion and not rationality. But it’s a question worth considering. We’ve all seen how the other anticipated assumptions driving the project — a surge in demand for electricity, a mining boom, rising oil prices, the need for rate stability — have not been borne out."

    Since Uncle Gnarley's is concerned with examining Muskrat Falls (Its genesis and its consequences alike), and since an actual NL journalist sees Anti-Quebec sentiment as having played a central role in the approval of this boondoggle, I do not believe I or other commentators from Quebec are dwelling upon something irrelevant.

    Fourth, you say you have never seen an anti-Quebec slogan in Newfoundland, nor heard such sentiments expressed aloud. Well. Let me share a personal anecdote with you. I worked in the American South for a year, and while there never once heard any racist speech or read any racist word (pamphlet, graffiti, whatever) directed against blacks. Not once. No, sirree.

    Did that mean that no such racism existed? Well, no: it simply meant that such racism was so widespread, so ubiquitous, so unchallenged, so unspoken, that saying anything against black Americans would, to local whites, have seemed as pointless as pointing out that the sky is blue.

    I trust I needn't spell out the relevance to the inhabitants of NL of this anecdote?

    • Etienne, as Average Joe would say, don't get pissed for a spelling mistake on your handle.
      The comment by Frampton , says she hopes anti Quebec sentiment was not a central role. The Telegram was owned for years by Continental? A Quebec company? Could be wrong. but never heard of any anti Telegram being Quebec owned
      True, subtle racism is alive and well at MUN , among students, according to a study that got little publication. Not aware aimed at the French though.
      We can all improve our attitude to ward our fellow man. Heracles has never been here , what about you?
      Both local TV stations carried the story of a Quebec business man investing in Nfld, with a positive tone.
      As to politicians and celebrities, many are of the worst character.
      I have heard it said that all island people, from around the world, are suspicious of outsiders, and maybe something to that.
      I know of Nflders that settled in the USA and are racist attitude against blacks, and of other , the very opposite.
      We have along history of being hoodwinked by sly , crafty politicians, and elite business types class.
      I guess too there are a few racists in Quebec?
      Anti Quebec was likely a component of the Boondoggle , but not a large one. It was sold on the idea that we need the power, otherwise we would have outages, and that it was cheaper than the alternatives, and fuel expected to got to 200 a barrel. The technical problems the average person had no idea and still do not. General ignorance more than anti Quebec. Indeed anti Quebec that does exist is from general ignorance. But you want to paint all with the one brush.
      So, I love you Heracles and Etienne. Can you love me back?

    • Hi PF,

      I posted my reply to your post while you were posting this one at the same time…

      In brief: improvement is real in this community, so we will keep working together to keep that improvement going and propagate it even outside this small blog community!

    • Heracles31, Etienne, and Ex Military Eng; each of you come across as being of above average intelligence and have a wealth of knowledge on the political history of Newfoundland and Quebec. Sadly, your main theme almost always ends with your perceived strong anti-Quebec sentiment of all Newfoundlanders, for which you collectively have given many examples throughout history. Some here on this blog continue to tell you it is not like that in reality, that the select actions of a few Newfoundlanders throughout history do not represent the sentiment of the majority today, but you continue to disbelieve us. Yet, you guys continue to beat the same old drum to the same old tune nearly every day you comment on this blog. To our ears it sounds very much like an anti-Newfoundland tune, and you are simply inciting racism. I present to you a challenge, which should prove quite easy considering your demonstrated history skills to date – present to us 10 public examples of Pro-Newfoundland sentiment from Quebec politicians or celebrities within the last 20 years. Should be easy. Oh, and you cannot use Winston’s recent ALRE project in Paradise as one. We will stand by . . .

    • Your comment @00;19
      April 14, WA@12;48 seems to make a reasoned comment on the importance of CF to Nfld, the value of good relationships, etc, and elsewhere says he invests in Quebec companies.
      At 18:43 he says rural Nfld was pro, not anti canadian in 1949, and also rural Nfld was anti merchant class in St johns.
      Heracles has repeatedly said Nfld needs to be hurt sufficiently to learn the lesson of the OX and Frog fable. WA said " Who could blame Quebec for waiting for Nfld to have its back against the wall" I interpret this to somewhat support your view that Quebec stands aside as Nfld self destructs.
      Quebec did nothing to support MFs , and could see it would be a boondoggle. It also did little or nothing to make public their expertise as to the flaws, as this would naturally be misinterpreted here by DW etc.
      And so Nfld has its back against the wall now. You say that is good and necessary to learn a lesson.
      There is a fine line in that logic and one of a revenge attitude of "proper thing to happen to them, they long deserved it"
      If such an emotion , that it promotes only a win attitude, and it is understandable if so intended, but that is not a win win attitude going forward. That is how I read WA overall, in the context of your statements.
      But you forgive WA. Seems he was saying who can blame Quebec, and agreeing with you, and " back against the wall" might suggest Quebec might be justified to take unfair advantage, not that they would or intend to. Thats my read .

    • I say give Labrador hydro to HQ to manage in return for a fixed low price cost for electricity in perpetuity.

      NLers don't have to capability to do it themselves, that is demonstrably evident. They don't have the project management skills, experience… they've let their cynical and incompetent politicians goad them into an "Us vs Them" mentality so that any screw-ups by their politicians are automatically blamed on outsiders victimizing them yet again. That only serves to further distract them from working with others to meet any kind of a mutually beneficial objective.

      So let HQ do it, they know how. Keep the bloody NL politicians and their grubby cronies the hell out of it.

    • Hi Anon 08:25,

      Here is a first serie of 5 quotes for you. Of course, they are in French 🙂

      Quebec is interested in a project from Newfoundland and would like to contribute to it:

      Newfoundland, a nice place to discover:

      The idea of a common future for Quebec and Newfoundland about hydro-electricity:

      Newfoundland, a great environment for cinema:

      Thanks to a collaboration between MUN and a university in Montreal, a breaktrough about the identification of a strange disease that exists (or is known) only in Newfoundland:

      Of course, there are many more. Here, I tried to cover a lot of different subject :
      Politic and public project

      Any specific theme you would like to see other than these 5 ?

    • Hi again Anon 08:27 (and not 25; sorry for the typo),

      Waiting for the themes you would like, here are few more. Instead on 1 article per subject, I thought about giving you 5 articles on a single subject.

      Everyone, including Quebec, knows that Newfoundlanders are always ready to help them facing some of the most dangerous or strange situations. Whenever a trans-atlantic flight is in trouble, everyone known where to go to reach safety and receive support.

      About 9/11

      No matter the problem is half-destroyed engine

      or any other mechanical problem,

      or because a baby is in a hurry and can not wait to enjoy life,

      There are no situation that Newfoundlanders can not handle and they already have see basically every possible case!

    • Anon 8:27:

      "You continue to disbelieve us", you write, regarding your denial of there being anti-Quebec sentiment in NL. Well, speaking for myself, yes, I do disbelieve you. The problem is threefold:

      1-A simple comparison of Canadian English-language press coverage of events in Quebec and of French language press coverage of the same events in Quebec is quite enough to convince one of the existence of a systematic and strong anti-Quebec bias. If you are a monolingual Canadian anglophone who relies on mainstream media coverage regarding Quebec, you will be *very heavily* biased against Quebec. Period. End of discussion.

      2-Heracles, above, gave all Newfoundlanders here a chance to *demonstrate* (rather than affirm) the non-existence of such anti-Quebec sentiment: he gave a list of recent anti-Quebec statements publicly made by various NL politicians (you know, the people who need voter support to remain in power, or get to power?) and asked that a comparable number of recent pro-Quebec quotes by politicians be given him.

      Now, IF there indeed is no such thing as a generalized anti-Quebec sentiment in NL, then we would logically expect politicians appealing to local voters to produce as many pro- as anti-Quebec statements. Thus, proving me, Heracles or Ex-Military Engr wrong on this matter should be a piece of cake for the political junkies here: just give a series of recent pro-Quebec quotes from the mouths of politicians. The fact that nobody has done so strongly suggests to me that there aren't any.

      Since, conversely, anti-Quebec statements do exist and have been repeatedly made by politicians who have been elected and re-elected, it is to my mind impossible not to conclude that anti-Quebec sentiment exists in NL.

      Please explain to me in what way my logic is at fault.

      3-Muskrat Falls, as a boondoggle, is quite in a league of its own: neither the Site C project in British Columbia nor the Keeyask Dam in Manitoba will have anything like the fiscal impact upon the province as a whole which Muskrat Falls will.

      So: Why is this? Why did the electorate of NL accept something so much worse, economically speaking, than the electorates of Manitoba and BC?
      Having lived in both provinces (Manitoba, BC), I can assure you that neither the provincial politicians nor the electorates there struck me as any better or any worse than those elsewhere when it came to economic matters.

      If we accept that NL has a strong anti-Quebec bias, however, then of course it would make sense that selling something economically noxious to the NL electorate is easier than it is in Manitoba and BC, if what is presented to the NL electorate is marketed/packaged as something that is anti-Quebec. This would explain why Muskrat Falls is so much more damaging to the province than Site C or the Keeyask dam. The Pamela Frampton article I linked to above points in the same direction.

      Again: Please explain to me in what way my logic is at fault.

  14. May I use Winston's ownership of Bombardier shares… He liked the fact that their planes were among the most fuel efficient (oops, EE again…)

    So sincere thanks to you Winston; without you I would have been empty handed… 😉

    Oh wait! A couple years ago, there was an anonymous (AJ?) who agreed receiving a brand new (Quebec made) BRP Skidoo each year so he doesn't bulldoze a power corridor across Quebec.

    That definitely showed his appreciation of Skidoos, isn't it?


    Actually, I'm having great fun here. We have great exchanges and most participants are open to listen and are eager to learn.

    I agree that I respond to what I perceive as unfair stabs against Quebec, but hey! That's my personality, that read anything else of it.

    Just wanted to lower the drama tone a little… 😉

  15. OMG, Heracles, even James Feehan, the MUN economist is now singing the tune of the value of minisplit heat pumps that Winston has preached. The Telegram story today, saying it will reduce heating bills by 60 percent and if it was done it could have shut down Holyrood there being no need for it, and so no Muskrat Falls
    Feehan likely reading Winston`s mail, or his published analysis in 2012, or his reporting here on UG. So, this is stale news, coming from a request to Feehan from Consumer Advocate Browne. But a t least Feehan finally got it right. What was the cost of that report, which for minisplits was available free in 2012

    • Hi PF,

      Can you please explain me how to advocate heat pump is a pro-Quebec action ? He may have turned from a pro-MF to an opponent to MF, but nothing of what you described is even close to be pro-Quebec.

      Lets compare him to UG: when and how did you saw UG as being pro-MF ? Personally, I never did. Despite being a clear opponent to MF, he expressed clear anti-Quebec positions and systematically refused to admit that such anti-Quebec thinking was inappropriate.

      From what he expressed, Qc – HQ's only interest in the case is to keep abusing Newfoundland even more and laughing at you and your situation.

      I still wait for the day when UG will acknowledge that such abuses were never Qc – HQ's mindset. That this misconception lead your province to a series of very poor decisions, from not building LC when it was time to building MF at the worst moment.

      Should Feehan acknowledge his report as being inappropriate, that he produced it under the influence of the mentality of the day and that UC is and has always be a Win – Win, then he will prove himself as not anti-Quebec anymore. Until that moment, pro heat pump or anti-MF is not what shows one as free of this anti-Quebec mentality.

      Nice to talk with you,

    • Feehan was not a supporter of MF from the start, Heracles . He had , I think the preference of wind , local hydro and conservation. Seems he has moved conservation via EE(Energy Efficiency) in the front with this report. And 60 percent saving does not include extra saving from HST, so actually more than 60 percent. Feehan says no magic number for rates, but good that we use at least some of MF power, so seems to advocate not very high rates, so lots of mitigation, but nothing on how to mitigate.
      A panel of experts to figure out the best rates given the issue of elasticity. OMG has not Vardy and Adams preached elasticity for years now, and before MFs sanction.
      But Heracles , you say EE is anti Quebec, come onnnn , man.
      That one must now be anti MFs and anti heat pump to be pro a stretchhhhhhh. Also must be anti wood, anti wood pellet, anti propane , anti oil, anti solar, anti wind, anti geothermal. anti hydro storage, and maybe anti-Christ?

    • Hi PF,

      Please, point me where I said that EE was anti-Quebec ?

      My position is the an official EE program in Newfoundland can be a very good thing –ONLY– –AFTER– a bailout or bankruptcy freed Newfoundland from its Take-Or-Pay contract. As long as the Take-Or-Pay contract is active, not to take is no benefit because you still have to pay.

      What I said about Feehan and many others is that they expressed the anti-Quebec way of think that must be changed. For them, everything from Quebec was / is / will be bad for Newfoundland, was / is / will be abuse and with the clear intent of doing so.

      Feehan said that the extension was an abuse of a vulnerable CFLCo, that the UC contract is unfair to the point that few, if any, can say the opposite and more.

      Know that the extension was the only way to save the project because HQ was the only buyer and user for the UC. Con ED, Ontario and others all said No. Because HQ was / is also a producer of hydro-electricity, the only viable way to sell its own product to a producer is to sell it to a lower price than the one he can achieve himself. Without the extension, the price tag for UC was too high to justify not doing our own projects. So either that price was lowered or we would have walk away because our projects were lower cost than UC.

      The price could not be lowered during the first 40 years of the contract because CFLCo needed the money to pay back the debt. As such, the only way to lower the average price was with a lower price over a longer period. CFLCo understood that and made their decision accordingly.

      So again, Yes Feehan and all the others I quoted above expressed clear anti-Quebec positions, the very anti-Quebec way of think that you say you can not see. If they changed their mind, good. But show me that they did and unfortunately, pleading for EE is not such a proof.

    • Where did you say that EE was anti-Quebec?
      In reference to Feehan You said "pro heat pump or anti MF is not what shows one is free of this anti Quebec mentality".
      You say UG is anti MFs but anti Quebec, and Feehan was anti Quebec because of some other issue or opinion not part of the Telegram story on rates.
      Feehan says heatpumps and wood oil etc (all of these are alternatives, but heat pumps, that use 60 % less energy is EE) all is detrimental to power sales here, and high rates.
      Now you say pleading for EE is not proof that Feehan is not anti Quebec. So your commnet applies only to Feehan and others that advocate for EE you don't accuse of being anti Quebec?
      Seems you have a bee in your bonnet fro Feehan? And for UG.
      You attack Feehan for this economic report which rather basis and should have been advanced pro sanction.

    • Hi Anon 15:31,

      Being pro-heat pump or anti-MF is 100% unrelated to Qc. As such, it is neither anti-Qc nor pro-Qc. I did not said they were anti-Qc because they were pro-heat pump, but PF used the pro-heat pump as an example of not being anti-Qc.

      Pro-Heat pump or anti-MF is neutral towards Qc. Both of these positions can be taken by pro-Qc people as much as by anti-Qc peoples.

      Saying that Qc abused a vulnerable CFLCo is attributing an explicit malicious intention to Qc. Feehan and many others said that and keep saying that.

      In court, even the latest Supreme Court case, CFLCo acknowledged that they were not contesting the fairness of the original deal. When CFLCo itself says that the original deal was fair, why do you keep saying the opposite ?

      As for Feehan, I am referring not the latest report he published about demand elasticity. I am talking about a report he produced years ago, about the renewal clause of the power contract. It is in that report that he expresses his anti-Quebec mentality.

      Did he changed since ? Great. Just show me. But to show me, you do it not by bringing a Quebec neutral statement like him being pro-heat pump. You do it by bringing a positive statement towards Quebec.

      As for examples of what a positive statement looks like, I posted many positive statements about Newfoundland above, like the generosity and care demonstrated by Newfoundlanders to people forced to land at Gander during 9/11. That great sympathy, help and support has been acknowledged by everyone and celebrated many times. Another is when Newfoundland started an interesting project, Qc supported it and expressed its desire to contribute to it.

      So again, find me pro-Quebec statement and do not confuse them with neutral statements…

    • Seems, Heracles, you confuse readers by linking Feehan past report with this one. You seem to know more of Feehan past than I do.
      If he was anti Quebec, then I doubt if few of such mind will acknowledge an error to admit they were unjustified. So proof of them being pro Quebec from them, is a waste of time, and perhaps most to expect they don't repeat it or write about anti Quebec……so not to live in the past. Feehan has not changed from pro to anti MF, as always anti as far as I see.
      Now the piece says it makes a switch from baseboard to minisplits to heat pumps an incentivized option for customers. Not sure he advocated an incentive to install, but maybe it is wise investment, for the customer, but not a solution to the boondoggle.

    • Hi again PF,

      You hit another part of the problem on the nose : ego.

      To change a mentality based on emotion is already hard enough. When this also means to step on your ego, doing that requires a trememdous force, discipline and self-control. Does Feehan and UG have such a force, discipline and self-controle ? I do not know but I hope they do.

      If they don't, then reality will have to be forced on them. Technically, that is about to happen soon enough. The bug is if this is the only way to get pass these emotions, then everyone trusting these leaders will have to suffer the same fate.

      So Yes, they may think it is better to save their ego and let people down; or by understanding how their own ego is about to push Newfoundlanders to bankruptcy, they may recognize that doing this is no sense and they are better saving the game than their ego.

      DW let his ego and his emotions neutralize his rational side. We see the result. Will leaders after him like UG, Feehan and other will do the same mistake they denounce or will they lead by example ?

      I hope they will lead by example….

  16. We have yet to see the full story of how we were duped and screwed by unscruptulous people. $12.7B spent to the whim of Nalcor execs with no accountability to anyone given a free hand to spend whatever they saw fit by DW, KD and now it seems DB with us pee ons having to pay for the rest of our lives. All because of tunnel vision— we didn't need MF, plain and simple and now our grandchildren will forever be saddled with a boondoggle no one can afford to pay for. The silence from the sleeveens involved is deafening. Consequences for their actions HAS to happen.

  17. It'll soon be time again for the local media to try and drum up support for all rural NL to move to Sin Jawns to fill up Danny Land. Funny how they can run a whole series on such claptrap but can't ask a hard question or bother to confront our crooked politician's.

  18. Two aspects to MUN economist Feehan report,
    1. showing 60 % energy saving on minisplits,
    2. as to peak demand saving, this is vague by the Telegram reporter, who little understands peak demand it seems.
    WA repeated stated the huge peak demand potential, that is necessary to eliminate Holyrood in winter. Feehan seems to agree with WA, by saying that changes ahead could push people to reduce their electricity usage enough that Holyrood could be "largely or even totally unneeded". If minisplits fail to deliver winter peak load reduction, this cannot happen for Holyrood, so Feehan implied that he agrees with Adams?
    Now if so, a problem, if I recall correctly, as WA stated in the past:
    1. Take Charge told the PUB minisplits would fail in winter and so no peak load reduction.
    2. MUN mechanical professors say minisplit savings a"myth"
    3. Take Charge claims minisplits save only 40% on energy , vs Feehan say 60% . Adams claims more than 60% possible. So 50% more saving if we believe Feehan instead of Take Charge (Nfld Power and Nfld Hydro).
    Who is telling the truth? Can UG bust another myth, whether the power companies and some MUN professors spreading fake news for 6 years or more?

    • Hi PF,

      For mini-splits like for anything else, you have good products, you have average products and you have cheap products.

      No doubt that some cheap products will fail during winter, even more during the coldest days, so when they would be most needed. As for saving, again, a cheap product may even have problem to pay back for itself.

      Fortunately, there are good products. These good products are not 100% perfect and they do have their failure rate like anything else. Still, they will perform as expected even during winter when they are most needed. They will also offer savings.

      If they are mixed with a smart thermostats, they can help reduce peak loads. By heating 1 or 2 degrees above the target before peak hours and waiting for termperature to drop 1 or 2 degrees below target, they can offer a significant period without heating at all. There will be a variation in temperature in the house, but that variation will stay within comfort margin.

      If they keep their temperature steady, then their only help is to reduce base load. Once base load is reduced, adding the same peak load on top of it still remains below the previous peaks.

      So I believe they can offer a real saving. The bug is : this saving is useless as long as the Take-Or-Pay contract is in effect. Because whatever is not taken must still be paid, there is no saving not to take.

      Get free of the Take-Or-Pay contract first. Once free from it, then heat pump and energy efficiency may very well offer real benefits.

      Always nice to talk with you,

    • PF,
      A MUN mechanical grad and senior engineer with considerable buildings experience. I have minisplits and based on winter #1 2017/18 achieved on average 50% monthly billings vs prior years. As this includes lighting, appliances, etc, the heat savings were considerably greater. I have good brand units but the workhorse – a tri-zone is the standard series with -15C rating as I didn't splurge on the more premium low temp model. My annual savings projection is easily over $1000 but I don't have a megahouse. I also know several other people getting solid results.
      To answer the 3 questions:
      1. Take Charge is wrong. Low grade units could fail the test though.
      2. I haven't seen such a report but I'd have no problem arguing against such a surprising conclusion
      3. Compared to resistance heating, Feehan and Adams are right
      As for the peak load question I'd hesitate to expect 60% demand reduction but it might be a substantial part. I use an energy monitor like Adams so I see how power demands fluctuate. It's too complex to discuss here but I'd expect about 40% demand reduction.

      PF – a question for you and only you – would you say this response is far more relevant than Heracles31 who wants to demonstrate his knowledge of every subject even where he has zero experience and first hand knowledge of the issue?

    • Anon @ 21:50
      I would rate your reply with an A rating, or if in figures 90%
      And your point out the value of good quality units vs cheap low grade units. You site figures and ambient temperature applicable for Nfld, especially the Avalon, -15C
      Too many reporting good results , so the MUN professor certainly seems wrong. And Take Charge wrong unless one uses low quality units and poor installation methods. 40 % demand reduction in winter peak load is considerable, and believe Adams reported that or higher.
      Heracles: Says good quality units can offer savings, but gives nothing to quantify savings, nothing to ambient temperature condition. He suggests setting temperature up and down, contrary to best method , best to let run steady, as up and down forces unit to inefficient operation. Heracles really says nothing as to peak load reduction, which is necessary to counter and shut Holyrood production.
      Heracles cannot resist to bring up Take or Pay, obsessive tendency, which is another issue from that asked.
      I rate Heracles a D, in numbers 40 percent.
      Of course, as a MUN mech grad it shows that MUN mech grads can exceed MUN mech profs in knowledge and ability. Heracles a IT engineer, lacks considerable knowledge on this subject, has no apparent experience, and no monitoring (evidenced based) experience as the MUN grad reports to have done.
      In this case, the MUN mech grad the OX, the IT engineer the frog, my opinion.

    • Hi PF,

      The up and down does increase the overall consumption, so that's why it is not the recommended formula. But you asked about peak period and this is how it could help. By taking more energy out of peak load, so to take less during peak, the effect is that peak load is indeed reduced as you asked if possible. There are hot water tanks that do similar: they let the water temperature drop a little during peak load and heat it back once peak is over. These are strategies to ease the peak load.

      About numbers, I did not gave for two reason. First is that I never heated my place using only baseboard. I always had a heat pump and my fireplace I enjoy on the coldest days. For that, I have no firm reference for the starting point. Second is when giving numbers like this, there is a higher risk of being mis-interpreted or to have the information mis-used. That's another reason why I would not have give such numbers.

      As for Anon 23:01, you still did not understood that kid story… Frog and Ox is not about being wrong or right. It is about accepting who you are, how you are, instead of trying to turn into something you are not. Not only turning in what you are not will fail, but the authentic identity of who you are will also be lost, loosing twice in the process.

    • PF – good response. You should give H31 a F-. His behaviour is mostly that of the classic internet troll exactly as the Wikipedia definition describes. For an IT pro there is no excuse. His actions are deliberate. His excessive overtures to defend Quebec and HQ are actually hurting his cause. If he is genuine but a bit lacking in self-control, he needs to tone it way down to be taken seriously. I can't imagine many here even read his comments anymore. With about 20 already in this thread alone, he is here for volume, not value.

  19. Heracles takes the handle of the Greek Heracles, who could do the impossible.
    Now yes HQ an Ox and Nalcor a frog. But DW,KD, EM, WL are all frogs, as to ego, but still in denial.Heracles too may burst as being excessive.
    His view on energy saving via water storage is sound, but generally HPs much more efficient when running steady, less efficient and negatively impact peak load with set backs.

    • Don't be too harsh on Heracles. He brought superb insider knowledge on some critical subjects; IMO, this is invaluable.

      Now, I agree (me included) we shall reduce redundancies (+ debates on individuals rather than on ideas) so we can attract new commentators.

      I'll also improve my personnal English writing (well, and temper) so I don't appear paternalistic.

      It would also be great if everyone would adopt at least an handle name, that would improve a lot the exchange fluidity.


  20. Late to game here on this one but by my own math I come out with the following Atlantic Province rates.

    Nova Scotia: 16.053 c/kwh
    PEI: 16.008 c/kwh
    New Brunswick: 12.367 c/kwh

    The average is therefore 14.809 c/kwh for the three provinces.

    These calculations assume an average customer usage of 1500 kwh/month and includes the base monthly charge of the utilities as well as the energy charge. Taxes are not included. For Nova Scotia I used the domestic service tariff rate instead of the time of use rates in order to simplify the comparison. The time of use rates do result in a lower overall rate.

    As an example, I used my own winter usage to calculate my costs if my house were located in NS. The average was 11.11 c/kwh with the time of use rates. For the fixed rate scheme, the average was 15.76 c/kwh.My personal winter usage averages 1879 kwh/month. My 2-story house is 14 years old and I added a mini-split heat pump 4 years ago which displaces most of the baseboard heating on two floors.