Originally posted by Canmorite
I'd be interested in voting conservative if they have an actual plan for the environment....
What should Alberta be doing to 'plan for the environment?' do you feel that we should have spent $1.3 billion to shutter coal plants early? NDP electricity 'reform' to cost Albertan's $6 Billion in the next 13 years.
BANFF ‑ You break it, you buy it.
It’s the kind of sign one finds inside Banff shops, right next to the tiny glass souvenirs.
It should also be the motto inside the Alberta legislature as the province undertakes a massive overhaul of the electricity system.
About 500 people in the industry descended on Banff this week for the annual conference of the Independent Power Producers Society of Alberta to contemplate what an uncertain future holds for the sector.
There’s plenty to consider: a phase-out of coal-fired power plants, the shift to a new capacity market, the influx of new renewable electricity, a cap on regulated consumer prices and the ongoing dispute over power purchase arrangements (PPA).
By one consultant’s calculations presented Tuesday, the potential costs associated with these measures could fall between $6.8 billion and $12.4 billion by 2030.
One looming question is what this all means for consumers, companies and the system Albertans need to turn on their lights.
Get it wrong and there will be plenty of blame to go around.
Electricity prices are already hot-button issues across the country — see Ontario as an example — and every Albertan has a vested interest in how the next steps in the transition to a cleaner power grid will play out.
As Scott Thon, president of Berkshire Hathaway Energy Canada (which owns transmission company AltaLink) said at a panel of power executives, the public wants the electricity industry to decarbonize, but the price Albertans pay can’t be ignored.
“There’s one primary thing we need to be focused on and that is customers’ bills. Not only focus on it, but we need to be accountable for it,” he said. “If the electricity bill doesn’t work out, let me tell you, it’s not going to be good for any of us.”
Alberta power prices are near all-time lows, averaging about $23 per megawatt-hour this year.
Many of the incoming government changes are designed to curb greenhouse gas emissions from the grid, bring on renewable power such as solar and wind, and fine-tune the market structure to ensure future reliability.
It won’t be cheap.
Independent electricity consultant EDC Associates projects the Notley government’s various power reforms will cost between $486 million and $883 million annually until 2030 — for a total bill of $6.8 billion to $12.4 billion.
This tab includes $1.36 billion in government compensation to coal plant owners to shut their plants early, and between $1 billion and $1.6 billion to settle the PPA disputes.
The incoming price cap for consumers will cost up to $1 billion, while between $4 billion and $8 billion will be needed to subsidize renewable energy generation until 2030. Another $200 million to $400 million in expected costs to the regulator are related to the capacity market shift.
EDC chief executive Duane Reid-Carlson, who presented the figures to the conference, said the price tag could vary significantly as these are the best- and worst-case scenarios, but it will be significant.
“We can itemize all the costs and it’s billions of dollars over the next 15 to 20 years … but it’s how they get paid for that we don’t know,” he said in an interview.
“Do they end up in the consumers’ bills? Do they end up in a transmission tariff? Do they end up as an Alberta global adjustment charge like Ontario has? We don’t have the answer to those yet.”
Some costs, such as the coal compensation bill, will come out of revenues from industrial carbon emissions. Others may end up as a charge on consumers’ monthly power bills.
One of the largest issues facing the sector is the change from the existing energy-only market — where generators are paid for the power they produce based on wholesale prices — to a new capacity-based market.
Under the new system to be put in place by 2021, generators will be paid from wholesale prices and for their capacity to produce electricity, even if they don’t sell it.
Several power company executives and the head of the Alberta Electric System Operator don’t expect this change will alter power prices.
AESO chief executive David Erickson noted in other capacity markets, the model actually reduces price volatility, something inherent in Alberta’s current system.
“It shouldn’t drive prices any higher than they would have been under the existing framework,” he said.
But key details, such as how much reserve power the AESO will require, still need to be determined.
“The capacity market in theory should deliver all-in bills the same to consumers as it would have under an energy-only market,” said Capital Power CEO Brian Vaasjo, who noted today’s prices in Alberta are depressed but expected to rebound within four years.
Make no mistake, consumers will be watching their power bills closely in the coming years. That’s why the government has already made some of these moves.
Beginning in June, consumers will see regulated electricity rates capped for four years at 6.8 cents per kilowatt-hour to ensure “consumers are protected from unforeseen spikes while we make this transition,” Energy Minister Marg McCuaig-Boyd told the conference.
What happens after the cap ends will be critical. That’s why it’s imperative the most efficient, cost-effective structure be put in place.
“Let’s not forget that our job collectively in this room is to get affordable, reliable electricity,” said Wayne Stensby, ATCO’s managing director of electricity.
“If we screw that up … we will not be forgiven.”
Or put another way, whoever breaks it, owns it.
Originally posted by ExtraSlow
This thread is great, finally we are mixing the regular hate and intolerance with some actual car talk.
Originally posted by Mar
This cannot be for real, nobody's that stupid. I think this guy is just trying to cause shit.
Last edited by dirtsniffer on 03-20-2017 at 05:02 PM
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