Clean Energy Act is What Needs Renewing

June 7, 2011

Op-ed by Marvin Shaffer in today’s Vancouver Sun:

If it is not already a fundamental law of economics it should be: When government says we must pay whatever it takes, we inevitably pay too much. So it is with the B.C. government’s energy policies.

In the Clean Energy Act, the government told BC Hydro it has to be self-sufficient. It wasn’t talking about ensuring a reliable supply of energy. "Self-sufficiency" as defined by the government is simply a requirement for BC Hydro to buy more long-term firm electricity supply than its own, well-established reliability criteria says it needs and that the B.C. Utilities Commission -the independent government agency tasked with regulating energy utilities -would support. Moreover, it has to do that regardless of the cost.

On top of that, the government legislated that BC Hydro has to buy "insurance" -even more electricity that it does not need.