Noted in Chapter One of this series was the fact Bruce Lourie had created, amongst others, the Canadian Environmental Grantmakers Network several years ago but the organizations name had been changed to Environment Funders Canada (EFC). Lourie has a habit of creating entities associated with the “climate change” objective and later on changing their names. The other strange thing about his creations is the websites related to the creations seldom, if ever, have a “search” capability so as a result it is virtually impossible to find any references on the site connecting them to the founder which is the case with EFC. Lourie is not listed as either a member of the Board of Directors or in the list of Staff and searching in their posted articles and their annual statements will not have his name pop up! His biography posted on CCI (Canadian Climate Institute) where he sits as a Director does note that he was “a founding Director of the Canadian Environmental Grantmakers’ Network“. One should wonder does that suggest perhaps he is a humble individual but, if that was the case, his biographies posted on the web presumably wouldn’t suggest he would seek speaking engagements for a fee!
Bruce A. Lourie is listed as the President in the Ivey Foundations 2019 CRA filing but the 2020 filing shows the President is Bruce A. Laurie. There is no “directors” listed in the 2021 filing! One would assume that “Laurie” is simply an error unless they have replaced him with someone with an almost identical name, but the latter seems unlikely.
The IVEY Foundation on their site state; they were “Established in 2014 as a strategic priority, Ivey Foundation’s primary focus is the Economy and the Environment granting program.“ Back in 2020 they basically said all future grants would be towards support of reaching the elusive “net-zero” emission target which implied no grants would be made for any other purpose. As noted in Chapter One back in late November 2022 Lourie announced the Ivey Foundation would disperse “its entire $100 million endowment over the next five years beginning in 2023.”
Interestingly enough should one review the CRA filings (December 31, 2021) for the Ivey Foundation it discloses the “Compensation range” for their employees. The following screenshot depicts that someone in the Foundation is paid in excess of $350K annually! The above noted five-year windup will mean the “someone” at the Ivey Foundation may have been paid $1,750,000 to run a charity! Not too shabby!
Now, imagine how much the $1,750,000 would help food banks trying their best to feed families and seniors experiencing poverty due to energy costs rising which drive up the price of everything including what they need to eat? Now also imagine how many families could be fed with the “$100 million endowment” destined for Lourie’s alumni.
A brief review of the “grants” file on the Ivey Foundation website disclosed approximately $1,245,000 went to five (5) members of the Strathmere Group (Environmental Defence, Ecojustice, etc.) and $3,090.000 to five (5) of Lourie’s creations (Environment Funders Canada, The Transition Accelerator, Efficiency Canada, etc.) or where he was instrumental in their creation.
For some reason we should expect none of those employed by the Ivey Foundation or the ten companies we searched for on the Ivey “grant” site are worried about “energy poverty” or about the harm they and the myriad of climate cult charities entrenched within the CRA listings are causing.
Curiosity arose when the Ivey grants were totalled so a search of the Federal Government’s “Grant” files for the last 5 years was undertaken for those same ten entities referenced above and as it turns our the five (5) members of the Strathmere Group were handed grants of approximately $19.7 million and the five (5) entities associated with Bruce Lourie seem to have received grants of around $47.1 million. We should be pretty sure that much money would have helped lots of food banks across the country feed the undernourished families suffering from energy poverty!
We seem to be witnessing the advent of the “Circular Economy” that will apparently benefit the elite of our society which in this particular case are weirdly classified as “charities”!
Suspicious about how those IWT (industrial wind turbines) were generating unneeded power for the past couple of days, a review of IESO data for May 19th and May 20th disclosed the awful truth!
Ontario households and businesses took a nasty hit as those IWT were producing nothing but unneeded power for the last couple of days as is their habit in the Spring and Fall. On May 19th IESO accepted 31,052 MWh and curtailed 1,200 MW from the IWT generators and then on May 20th IESO accepted 42,542 MWh and curtailed 6,681 MW.
As is quite frequent during this time of the year the demand for power in Ontario wasn’t needed so IESO were busy getting rid of it selling it off for pennies of its cost to Michigan, New York and Quebec with net exports (exports minus imports) on May 19th of 55,382 MWh and 56,382 MWh on May 20th. As one can easily understand those net-exports on both days were well in excess of what those IWT delivered meaning they were not needed as peak demand on the 19th reached only 14,413 MW at hour 18 and 15,561 MW on May 20th at hour 20.
The parties buying and selling the excess energy surely had a field day as the average HOEP (hourly Ontario energy price) or market price averaged only $10.96 (about one cent per kWh) on May 19th and even less on May 20th as the HOEP averaged $5.92/MWh (less than one cent per kWh).
The net result was IWT generation (accepted and curtailed) on May 19th cost $4,336,020 and May 20th IWT generation (accepted and curtailed) cost $6,544,820. Collectively the two days brought those IWT owners’ gross revenue of $10,880,540 due to their “first-to-the-grid” rights under their contracts with IESO.
Over the two days the HOEP sale price of that unneeded IWT generation earned a miniscule $591,515 (5.4% of their cost) putting the net cost of that power (our neighbours happily snapped up) to $10,289,315.
The weight of the McGuinty/Wynne GEA (Green Energy Act) pushed by Gerald Butts continues to hammer Ontarians with costs providing no value except to the owners of those IWT and our neighbours!
Those who voted for the Ford led government surely hoped their gaining a majority in the Provincial Parliament would somehow result in a different outcome. Electricity costs of energy are essential to the daily needs of households and businesses but for some reason their rising costs are not dealt with.
Just another problem brought to us by the “climate change” fanatics our politicians seem unwilling to challenge as we watch our costs rise and energy poverty increase!
Well once again Ontario ratepayer’s and taxpayer’s generosity was in full swing as those IWT (industrial wind turbines) were in full motion throughout the day. IESO forecast they would generate 60,760 MWh or about 52% of their capacity (enough to supply over 2 million average Ontario households) but accepted 51,130 MWh meaning about 9,630 MWh were curtailed.
The cost of the foregoing at $135/MWh for what was accepted was $6,902,550 plus another $1,155,600 for the curtailed power at $120/MWh bringing the total cost to $8,058,150 for the IWT output. The big problem with yesterday’s IWT output was; we didn’t need it as demand throughout the day was less than what our baseload (nuclear and most hydro) provided and peak demand only reached 14,757 MW at Hour 21.
What the foregoing resulted in was seeing all that surplus generation exported while driving down the market price (HOEP) which averaged only $3.40/MWh over the day. As a result, IESO data disclosed our net exports (exports minus imports) to Michigan, New York and Quebec were 57,732 MWh. Going further, the IWT accepted generation of 51,130 MWh represented 88.6% of what we gave away. If we included the IWT curtailed generation those IWT could have generated 105% of what we sold off for pennies of their guaranteed “first-to-the-grid” costs.
The results from having those IWT generate their intermittent and unreliable power is costs to Ontarians for just yesterday’s unneeded generation was just shy of $7.9 million.
The above clearly shows how layering unreliable and intermittent generation like wind and solar drives up the costs of our energy consumption.
Despite the obvious there clearly is no intention IESO will reduce those costs as a Press Release from them yesterday illustrates they are going to add yet another layer. They announced the “largest energy storage procurement ever in Canada“ and the bulk of it will be battery storage allowing the IWT owners to double down on the revenue grab from us ratepayers. Those battery storage systems will allow them to buy their intermittent wind generation (we are obliged to purchase) for the cheap market price and sell it back into the grid at higher prices when the wind isn’t blowing or the sun isn’t shining.
We should all wonder; when will commonsense ever return or is this meant to drive more of us into “energy poverty” to save the world from “global warming”!
PS: The overnight temperature in most of Southern Ontario in mid-May was around zero (0) degrees Celsius which suggests we may have solved the UNIPCC crisis!
The CCI was originally called the Canadian Institute for Clean Growth and Climate Change(CICGCC) when originally created by Catherine McKenna as the Federal Minister of the Environment and Climate Change. The announcement was made as an outgrowth of a reputed “competition” and McKenna handed the winning bidder; “The Pan-Canadian Expert Collaboration” a group headed up by Kathy Bardswick, former President and CEO of The Co-operators Group Ltd; $20 million of our tax dollars. That $20 million was for the anticipated five (5) year process of using; “Their expertise is a source of clean-growth solutions for Canada and the world and can help all of us mitigate and adapt to the impacts of climate change.“ The original name suggested whatever was to come from this new taxpayer funded organization produced by their “expertise” was a foregone conclusion so the name was changed to the “Canadian Institute for Climate Change” or CICC.
It is now called the Canadian Climate Institute and they have; presumably with the blessing of the CRA (Canada Revenue Agency), converted this government created organization to a CHARITY!
One should wonder why they became a charity as they were a “not-for-profit” institution annually receiving the $4 million to display their “expertise” via those unbiased reports (sarcasm intended) promised by former Minister McKenna. It appears the annual $4 million of our tax dollars wasn’t enough as displayed on page 2 of their Annual Impact Report for 2022-2023! It states:
“The Canadian Climate Institute is a non-partisan pan-Canadian charitable organization. Our work is made possible through the financial support of Environment and Climate Change Canada, and the generous support of the Ivey Foundation, Scotiabank, Loblaw Companies Limited, QuadReal Property Group, and the Trottier Family Foundation.“ As an aside a review of the above only disclosed one contribution of $20K from the Trottier Foundation via the CRA filings whereas the Ivey Foundation failed to provide their “donee” list to the CRA. One should wonder why the CRA doesn’t enforce its regulations?
The CRA filing for CCI provides the salary ranges for the top 10 employees and the top earner, who presumably is the current CEO, Rick Smith, earns somewhere between $200,000 to $249,999! No energy poverty for him!
Back on January 3, 2022 Rick Smith had an article published in Macleans titled “Let’s make climate change boring in 2022” and in it was the following paragraph:
“The U.K., for instance, has halved carbon emissions since 1990. It has settled into an annual cycle of executing the national carbon reduction plan, assessing progress against the plan, updating the plan, then repeating. It’s boring. It’s predictable. It’s working.“
Interestingly enough Mr. Smith failed to even consider how reducing emissions would drive up home energy costs and they did; adding over 2 million more households in 2022 as the following quote from an article in the Guardian on February 28, 2023 notes: “The number of households in England who spend more than 10% of their income, excluding housing costs, on energy has increased from 4.93m households in 2021 to 7.39m in 2022.“ He seems determined to do the same thing to Canadian households. At his taxpayer funded salary however it is unlikely he will experience “energy poverty” so he presses on to increase energy poverty for the rest of the population!
Now looking at this charity it is interesting to note the financial information filed with the CRA for the year ended March 31, 2022, indicates charitable donations represented 0.2% (2/10th of 1%) of their gross revenue strongly suggesting logical individuals fail to recognize them as a “charity”!
Now having a look at Government Grants we should note CCI back on December 5, 2022 were handed a $500K Grant from the Federal Government described as “Policy analysis and stakeholder views on climate and environmental impacts of inactive oil and gas wells“. Apparently the $4 million per year handed to the CCI is insufficient so they must gobble up another $500K of our tax dollars.
Looking further at the CCI Annual Impact Report for 2022-2023 it is interesting to read the message from the President, Rick Smith as he notes “In March 2023, the federal Sustainable Finance Action Council published the Taxonomy Roadmap Report. Our experts contributed to this inaugural taxonomy proposal, which starts to define what “green” and “transition” investing could look like in Canada, helping drive crucial private investments into activities that reduce emissions.“ The Smith message went on to say “In July 2022, the Climate Institute hosted our first roundtable showcasing Indigenous-led research and policy on climate change. And in October, we teamed up with the Net-Zero Advisory Body to cohost our first in-person national conference“
Sustainable Finance Action Council: For those who are not familiar with the Sustainable Finance Action Council it is another organization created by the Trudeau led Government on May 12, 2021, under Finance Minister Freeland and Jonathon Wilkinson, then Minister of Environment and Climate Change. They appointed Kathy Bardswick (former Chair of the CICC before it’s name change to CCI) as the inaugural Chair and the Press Release stated “Sustainable finance is about incorporating environmental, social and governance factors into investment decisions and is a fast-growing market that is gaining speed as more and more businesses address climate change and transition to a low-carbon economy and seize the economic opportunities it presents.“ The council was basically charged with aligning ESG within the controls of the many companies operating in the confines of finance including banks, insurance companies and pension funds. Needless to say in the time that followed they had numerous meetings, plenary sessions etc. with various parties within the “financial sector” but none of the meetings, etc. appeared to be with sectors that manufacture products or distribute them, grow food and sell or serve it, those who supply energy and others who would be most affected by applying ESG standards to their businesses. One should wonder why their views were not sought?
Net-Zero Advisory Body: This may be another unfamiliar named organization by the Trudeau led Government announced on February 25, 2021 by Jonathan Wilkinson, the Minister of the Environment and Climate Change at the time and he met with the newly appointed; Co-Chairs, Marie-Pierre Ippersiel and Dan Wicklum. The latter is CEO of the Transition Accelerator one of the many charities founded by Bruce Lourie where he sits as the Chair. In a look at the CRA Charity files for the Transition Accelerator it discloses they have NEVER had a donation where they have been required to issue a “tax receipt”! They have been quite successful at obtaining Government Grants however, of at least $1.8 million.
Turning now to the Net-Zero Advisory Body (NZAB) we should note in January 2023 they delivered their first annual report. The co-chairs message to Minister Guilbeault about his “Emission Reduction Plan” had this to say: “The measures proposed in the 2030 Emissions Reduction Plan (ERP) set credible foundations upon which a more ambitious transition can be built. While we are confident our advice will help put Canada on the right path, bringing the full suite of ERP measures and proposals to fruition as quickly and rigorously as possible is required for success.“
They said the foregoing despite the scary part of his original message which claimed: “Climate change is a crisis that persists and will only grow if we do not do more, faster. Flooding, landslides, drought, and wildfire—the mounting costs of extreme weather underscore the need to chart towards a future where Canadians have both a clean environment and a strong economy.“
It is amusing and mind-blowing to scan the 75 pages of the NZAB’s annual report and to visualize the destruction that will be caused to Canada’s economy via the 25 pieces of “advice” the report recommends in support of Guilbeault’s ERP. The issue related to costs of each piece of advice are not examined or commented on and only one reference to annual costs can be found. if one searches using the “$” sign only 9 can be found. If one searches using “net-zero” however it generates 464 hits and “emissions” brings 171. We should have no doubt this is what was anticipated!
In respect to costs the report doesn’t analyze any of their “advice” and quotes other reports with only one in respect to the total annual costs which seems low: “For example, one study shows that a pan-Canadian energy transition in all sectors would cost up to $43.3 billion annually until reaching net-zero“ That would represent about 1.6% of Canada’s annual GDP (2022 estimates) and approximately 22.7% of the 2023 annual budget. One should wonder where those billions will come from as we are already running significant annual budget deficits.
In other news about the NZAB they seem excited as some of them attended the COP 26 Conference in Glasgow and while there: NZAB, the CICC (now the CCI) and the IVEY Foundation (Bruce Lourie is the CEO) co-hosted an informal gathering with guests from the Canadian delegation and the ICCN. The two Co-Chairs posted pictures on their site with Trudeau, Guilbeault and Wilkinson but it’s hard to judge their excitement as they all have their masks on.
We should be pretty sure the above attendees at COP 26 in Glasgow were there thanks to the generosity of Canada’s taxpayers along with the other 270+ Canadian delegates that were in attendance.
It seems readily apparent the Trudeau led government who will spend over $34 billion annually to service our national debt have no problem at spending another $43.3 billion annually to achieve the net-zero targets, even though it will have no effect on “global warming”! It brings to mind our PM’s quote:
Ah, yes; “you’ll forgive me if I don’t think about monetary policy!”
Well then, could you PM Trudeau, at the least stop granting charitable status to institutions your government creates and stop throwing our tax dollars to them via “grants”!
As incredible as it sounds; all of the wind generation from those IWT (industrial wind turbines) spread throughout Ontario on April 17, 2023, were either exported or caused almost all (98.9%) of the IESO reported: net-exports of 60,288 MW!
IWT generation accepted into the grid by IESO was 59,606 MWh whereas the forecast by them was possible generation of 75,047 MW. Obviously about 14,441 MW were curtailed! What that tells us is, we didn’t need any IWT generation as our exported electricity generation actually exceeded the IWT accepted generation.
The foregoing means the cost of accepted IWT generation at the contracted price of $135/MWh plus the cost of the curtailed generation at $120/MWh brought the total cost of what was delivered and curtailed to $$9,899,730.
The average market price or HOEP (hourly Ontario export price) for the full 24 hours was only $8.68/MWh which basically means for all of the IWT accepted generation the 59,606 MWh generated and then exported earned only $517,380.
The foregoing piddly money earned from the sale of our unneeded IWT generation reduced the total cost of what we Ontarians paid for the accepted and curtailed generation to around $9.382 million.
Ontario’s ratepayers and taxpayers paid $9.382 million for NOTHING which (to paraphrase a former Ontario Liberal Minister of Energy, Bob Chiarelli) amounts to the cost of a large timmies coffee per household!
The expression “water under the bridge” is an idiom implying “something that happened in the past and cannot now be changed”! The November 2022 report by Ontario’s Auditor General, Bonnie Lysyk, titled “Ontario Power Generation: Management and Maintenance of Hydroelectric Generating Stations“ clearly shows that expression to be true.
The following chart from the report outlines how OPG’s baseload hydro reputedly generated SBG (surplus baseload generation) for seven years starting in 2015 up to and including 2021:
“From 2015 to 2021, OPG could have generated approximately 269 million megawatt hours (MWh) of electricity but only generated 226 million MWh, meaning about 43 million MWh of generating capacity went unused. In 2021 alone, OPG could have generated an additional 4.6 million MWh of electricity, or enough to power over 540,000 Ontario households for a year.“
The chart from the OAG’s report depicts annual OPG water spills that could have generated the 43 million MWh (43 TWh [terawatt hours]) and also highlights the annual cost which, for the seven (7) years, was collectively $730 million. Needless to say Ontario’s ratepayers were obligated to pick up those costs which also included about $43 million for wasted water fuel costs that went into the province’s revenue base.
The AG’s report also noted how SBG in 2013 was only 1.7 million MWh. In 2013 the grid connected IWT (industrial wind turbines) generated 5.2 TWh whereas by 2021 they generated 11.8 TWh. Higher IWT generation (13.8 TWh in 2022) will increase SBG particularly when some of our nuclear plants (currently under refurbishment) are back in service meaning costs to ratepayers/taxpayers will increase further.
It is worth recounting the GEA (Green Energy Act) was passed in 2009 and as contracts were let to those IWT companies they were granted “first-to-the-grid” rights meaning they got preference over all other grid connected generation capacity with the exception of nuclear. What that meant is during lower demand hours of the day other capacity such as hydro became surplus capacity relegated to having to dispatch. The result is ratepayers pay for not only the cost of what OPG was paid for the power but also for the water NOT running through the turbines as well as the annualized capital costs for other peak power supplies such as natural gas and biomass plants! The foregoing layering effect has driven up prices wherever IWT and solar panels have been installed not only increasing energy costs but also the energy poverty they create!
Additionally it is worth pointing out the cost of hydro generated power is less than $50/MWh whereas IWT generation is priced at $135/MWh due to their “first-to-the-grid” rights and even if curtailed cost $120/MWh. So when those IWT or solar panels are responsible for producing surplus power we ratepayers and taxpayers are burdened with not only the costs for the surplus baseload power but also for grid accepted power at the much higher costs of wind and solar generation.
When demand is very low and baseload nuclear and hydro can fully satisfy demand, we frequently sell off surplus power (often generated by wind and solar) to our neighbours in Michigan, NY and Quebec for pennies of what we ratepayers and taxpayers paid for it! Just another added burden to our daily living costs!
The Ford led government promised to fix the electricity system when in opposition but all they seem to have done is transfer more costs to both ratepayers and taxpayers.
We now are left to wonder why the Ford led government haven’t passed legislation to amend those FIT (feed in tariff) contracts removing the “first-to-the-grid” rights granted to them by their predecessors?
Perhaps they simply consider their original aspirations as simply “water under the bridge”!
A short video interview with Canadian farmers attending the Ottawa Valley Farm Show posted on the Farmers Forum website, associated with Trudeau’s announcement asking farmers to “voluntarily” reduce their use of fertilizers, went over like a lead balloon! The farmers interviewed noted in addition to the cost of fertilizer increasing in price by a factor of two to three year over year caused by carbon taxes, etc., etc. ensured farmers were only using what they felt could produce reasonably good yields to provide them with enough income to survive. The cost of fertilizers zoomed up due to the cost of producing and transporting it to them and they expressed concern that “volunteering” to use less would ultimately result in a government mandate similar to what has happened in the Netherlands and cause hardship.
Record Spending by Environmentalists
An article from the US, Capital Research Centre (CRC) a month ago in the first sentence stated: “The greenest thing about Big Green is its mountain of cash“ and went on to note the environmental left poured out U.S.$2.4 billon pushing their agenda! The article went on to state the CRC examined 166 left-leaning charities whose primary focus was on climate change or environmental regulation and in 2019 they raked in almost U.S.$2.7 billion. They spent the latter on their agenda and doled out “$435,311,881 in grants to other, mostly left-leaning nonprofits“. The article also names the top 20 of the 166 they examined and those in the top 20 such as World Wildlife Fund, Environmental Defense Fund, Sierra Club and Sierra Club Foundation, Greenpeace, etc. amongst the list are familiar names to us here in Canada. If the CRA (Canada Revenue Agency) was as good as the US is in disclosure a personal guess would be that Canadian charities with the same objectives as their US peers would generate around 10% (CDN$270 million) of what was generated south of the border. Personal knowledge of those fightingthe eco-warriors here in Canada discloses all of them are NFP (not-for-profits) without charitable status. We are severely outgunned by the sanctimonious “Greta” crowd!
IESO Needs More Money
The IESO recently received the blessing of the Ontario Minister of Energy for their 2023-2025 Business Plan which sought increased revenue “of 5.8%, 4.8%, and 5.2% over the three year planning period.“ Needless to say the “plan” pushes the objectives of the Ford led provincial government which echo the McGuinty/Wynne leadership days which drove electricity prices up by well over 100%. As one example the business plan states “Pairing energy storage with wind or solar generation can improve operational efficiency and help meet the province’s emerging electricity needs. For this reason, the integration of hybrid storage/generation resources has been designated a priority project within the IESO’s Enabling Resources initiative“ The obvious fall-out from adding “hybrid storage“, etc, will drive-up energy costs while they forecast increasing demand! The “plan” states they need “to support the significant growth in the industrial, mining and agricultural sectors, as well as major expansion in transportation electrification, which will collectively drive higher electricity demand than Ontario has seen in many years“.
It seems apparent the Province in it’s recently announced budget (Building a Strong Ontario) recognizes “higher demand” will increase budget requirements for a jump in the Electricity Cost-Relief Programs of 9.6% (up $571 Million) from the current year ending March 31, 2023 at $5.946 billion to $6.516 billion for the upcoming year. The other scary item in the budget was the announcement the province would launch a “Clean Energy Credit Registry” suggesting it would boost competitiveness and attract jobs. It is scary as they claim: “A CEC registry provides businesses with a tool to meet these goals and demonstrate that their electricity has been sourced from clean resources, such as hydroelectric, solar, wind, bioenergy and nuclear power. Funds generated through the purchases of CECs could be returned to ratepayers, to help lower electricity costs and support future clean energy generation.” It is hard to understand or believe requiring companies to purchase “Clean Energy Credits” will “boost competitiveness and attract jobs.“ It will simply increase costs and be inflationary!
The UK’s Energy Import Bill in 2022 Jumped by 117%
An article out of the UK “reported that the cost of imports soared from £54bn in 2021 to £117bn last year, breaking the £100bn barrier for the first time.“ The UK government and many of the EU countries have fully endorsed the “net-zero” push and it is impacting them severely so the pushback has expanded as more and more households suffer from “energy poverty”. In the UK an article in the “Conversation” stated: “In October 2021, an estimated 4 million households in the UK were in fuel poverty. But the largest increase in gas and electricity prices ever in April 2022 has pushed a further 2.7 million UK households into fuel poverty, bringing the total number to 6.7 million.“ To put that in perspective; 6.7 million UK households represents 23.8% of all households in the UK and in just six months the number suffering from energy poverty grew from 14.2%. Just over a year ago the UK government imposed a 25% windfall tax on oil and gas producers in the North Sea and it, coupled with a ban from purchasing Russian fossil fuels, has obviously resulted in the substantial increase in energy poverty. Interestingly the OEUK (Offshore Energies UK) calculates “the North Sea still has oil and gas reserves equivalent to 15bn barrels of oil – enough to support the nation’s needs for the three decades needed to build the offshore wind and other low carbon energy systems essential to power the future.“ More proof politicians in the developed world seem to have abandoned their citizens all in the name of saving the planet from the hyperbole of “climate change”!
As most Canadians are slowly finding out should they buy anything from a fast-food outlet or go grocery shopping the Canadian Government under Justin Trudeau’s leadership has banned the use of six types of single use plastics which includes straws, plastic bags, stir sticks, etc. We were told by them the ban would improve the environment while delivering economic benefits. The article in the Financial Post a couple of days ago clearly demonstrated the policies invoked by the Minister of the Environment and Climate Change, Steven Guilbeault, will both increase waste and increase costs citing inaccurate claims made by the government in respect to how plastic waste is handled in Canada. Needless to say the inaccurate claims were repeated by the media such as the CBC without any fact checking. The substitutes for the banned single use plastics will not only have “higher climate change” impacts but will also double the amount of waste created. The government’s own study stated only 1% of plastic waste in Canada “were discarded outside of the normal waste stream (i.e., not landfilled, recycled or incinerated)“. So we should wonder; why ban those plastics if the ban increases waste and disposal costs?
Conclusion: The foregoing articles clearly demonstrate how the push to achieve the elusive “net-zero” target continues to have no affect on the climate while it inflates costs and creates energy poverty. As our politicians continue to set policies advocated by the ENGO “Green Inflation” will grow!
Most Canadians from coast to coast look forward to Spring arrival as we get excited about warmer weather and watching mother nature show her stuff. Those Canadians living in Ontario however can be both happy and sad about Spring arrival as it has the bad habit of generating increased costs for one of life’s necessities which is energy with an emphasis on the cost of electricity.
Two recent happenings on March 19, 2023, bring the focus on the sad part of Spring arrival. The first is more sunshine which creates more energy from those solar panels which under the McGuinty led government received contacts at ridiculous guaranteed rates as high as 0.80/cents a kWh. Now apparently, they have embarked on more hits to our pocketbooks as the first six (6) hours of March 19th suggests they can now produce power even when the sun isn’t shining as this screenshot from IESO demonstrates!
Solar Panel Generation When the Sun isn’t Shining?
As if the foregoing wasn’t enough weird news, on the same day as solar power was generated in darkness, we note IESO data supplied more bad news. Normally at this time of year as the snow melts and water flows Ontario benefits from more generation from our hydro facilities which are also our cheapest and cleanest source of generation. As it turns out IESO data disclosed more bad news as the first three (3) hours of March 19th (two days before spring arrives ) those IWT (industrial wind turbines) generated more electricity than our hydro plants as evidenced in the following two screenshots.
Wind Generation Beats Hydro Generation!
To accentuate the foregoing those IWT did the same thing in the last three hours of the day as the following screenshots clearly show!
IWT Generation Hours 22, 23, 24!
Hydro Generation Hours 22, 23, 24!
Over the full 24 hours IWT generated a total of 92,447 MW or approximately 78.6% of their capacity and only slightly less than hydro which generated 94,511 MW but could have easily produced more. Ontario was busy selling off the unneeded power which we (logically) should attribute to IWT generation to our neighbours at an average price of $14.86/MWh. We exported 53,308 MW so generated revenue of around $792K while we paid $135/MWh for it, so it cost Ontarians about $6.4 million for unneeded power. We should also suspect IESO were busy telling OPG to spill hydro (we are obliged to also pay for) as demand was low and only peaked at 17,057 MW at hour 20.
The ups and downs of those intermittent IWT and solar panels are in the bad habit of generating lots of unneeded power during the spring and fall seasons when Ontario demand is low. They are the principal reason the Province of Ontario stiff taxpayers with annual additional costs of $6.5 billion in an attempt to hide the mess our electricity system is actually in.
Just one day’s data makes it obvious both of the foregoing sources of intermittent and unreliable electricity generation should be tossed in the garbage!
The many terms now spouted off by politicians, their bureaucrats and ENGO (environmental non-government organization) such as: The Great Reset, net-zero, climate change, electrification, Just Transition, ESG and stakeholder capitalism could have been used instead of the captioned “Circular Economy” but based on the following the latter highlights what we are seeing. So let’s look at how regulations coupled with your tax dollars are making it happen!
Gas Tax Funding for Municipal Transit
The Province recently and quietly announced it was providing $379.5 million to 107 municipalities for the 2022-23 year to be “used to extend service hours, buy transit vehicles, add routes, improve accessibility or upgrade infrastructure.“ The money came from those “provincial sales taxes” levied when you purchase gasoline or diesel fuel to keep your ICE vehicles running but apparently they came up short for the year as (we assume) due to Covid-19 lockdowns. As a result the province kicked in $80 million of Ontarians regular taxes to supplement the gas-tax funding. The foregoing $379.5 million appears to be additional to the $505 million announced and handed out only three months ago. So what are the municipalities doing with some of that money is the question and does it align with the most recent handout? Looking at Ottawa Transit who are destined to receive $37,804,511 (10% of the $379.5 million) it appears it will help them to pay for 13 of the 350 electric buses ($2.8 million per EV bus) they recently budgeted for with the $974 million their council approved to spend. In Toronto’s case they will receive $185,575,500 (48.9% of the $379.5 million). Back in 2021 the TTC (Toronto Transit Commission) reputedly ordered 300 electric buses with a price tax of $300 million after having earlier ordering 300 hybrid electric buses (HEV) at a cost of $390 million. One should wonder why is Ottawa Transit paying triple the price for their EV buses?
As an aside when all the cars, buses and transport vehicles are all electric powered where will the money now provided via those “gas taxes” come from? Surely the politicians know but refuse to tell us!
Brampton is getting a new electric fire truck this spring
The City of Brampton, where Patrick Brown; former contender for the Leadership of the Ontario Conservative Party, (booted out for using money to buy memberships similar to the CCP current scandal in the Federal Liberal Party) is the Mayor. Back in June 2021 the city announced with great fanfare they were buying a new electric fire truck. The announcement claimed it would be the first municipality in Ontario with an electric fire truck and that it would be delivered in late 2022. It now appears the delivery date has been pushed to this spring based on an article from late October. Needless to say Mayor Brown in the announcement bragged about Brampton by stating: “At the City of Brampton, we are working to build an increasingly sustainable community in everything that we do as a Green City.“ He went on to say he was delighted the Fire Department would secure “Ontario’s first fully electric fire truck.” As it turns out the truck is not “fully electric” as it also has a diesel generator on board to charge the battery beyond its two-hour limit. It is also interesting to note Los Angeles claimed it had received America’s first electric fire truck but before it was put into service it’s water tank sprung a leak as a short video demonstrated. Mayor Brown should pray this fire truck doesn’t spring a leak or taxpayers may simply “circle the wagons” at the next municipal election!
The Resource Productivity and Recovery Authority (RPRA) created to enforce Ontario’s Circular Economy Laws
The RPRA is the regulator mandated by the Government of Ontario to enforce the province’s circular economy laws. We should guess 99.5% of Ontarians have never heard of RPRA or have any idea of their responsibility or impact on our daily lives. The RPRA was a creation of the Ontario Liberal Government under Premier Kathleen Wynne “in November 2016 to support the transition to a waste-free Ontario”.
What the foregoing means is; “If you purchase batteries, electronics, hazardous and special products, lighting or tires in Ontario, you may see an extra charge added to your receipt called an environmental fee, resource recovery fee, environmental handling fee, tire handling fee, eco-fee, recycling fee or something similar.” In all cases the fee is generally hidden however in some cases your receipt may have a message embedded such as: “The tire producer/manufacturer of the tire and (insert retailer name) are responsible for the recycling fee charged on new tires. All fees collected go towards the collection, transportation and processing costs of recycling used tires.” Regulations such as “O. Reg. 522/20: ELECTRICAL AND ELECTRONIC EQUIPMENT“ give the province the authority to enforce the collection of those fees and as those fees are included it the price your paying you pay provincial and federal sales taxes. It is interesting to quickly review RPRA’s December 31, 2021 Annual Report and note they claim having 48 fulltime employees and their annual costs for “salaries and benefits” were $5,818,785. Wow, that indicates the annual average cost per employee for that year was in excess of $121K per employee.
This appears to be an example of the jobs our Federal and most Provincial Governments suggest will benefit from the “Just Transition”. Perhaps they forget to give any thought to where the money to pay those salaries and benefits originate if the private sector is decimated due to their net-zero plans!
Cow manure gives power to Ontario’s first carbon negative refuse truck
It now appears as the expression goes; “the sh-t has hit the fan” as recycled cow manure is now powering a refuge truck for Bluewater Recycling Association. The truck is reputedly “fuelled by renewable natural gas (RNG) produced by a local Ontario farm from largely cow manure.“ As farmers have known for decades manure will increase crop yields but not to the degree of mineral fertilizers. The problem of the switch to mineral fertilizers however, in a study over three decades, determined that manure is much better at SOC (social organic carbon) sequestration then mineral fertilizers. What that suggests is using manure to generate RNG may reduce carbon sequestration in soil. Maybe converting cow manure into RNG is not the panacea to achieve net-zero! Somehow however, it is seen by our politicians as a great event as noted by Ontario’s Minister of Energy , Todd Smith quoted in the article stating: “Renewable natural gas is making a difference in communities across Ontario and contributing to green innovation in our energy sector. Leveraging the power of RNG as a flexible and reliable energy source means less waste and lower emissions,”.
One should ask the question; is this simply more horse-sh-t from our politicians in their push towards the “Just Transition” and the creation of their perception of the “circular economy”?
Farmers illegally dismantle emissions system on “every single” tractor
For over a decade farm tractors have come with mandated “Diesel Exhaust Fluid” (DEF) which is urea, and modern machines have systems that inject the substance into the engine’s exhaust stream. A recent article appearing in the Farmers Forum suggests “for just as long, many farmers have been disabling the controversial systems, to save both fuel and maintenance costs.“ The article went on to note “on condition of anonymity, an Ontario diesel mechanic with knowledge of the subject expressed surprise that only 50 % of new tractors and combines might be undergoing a DEF-deletion after purchase. “Every single one is being modified,” he estimated.The mechanic couldn’t blame farmers for doing it. Current DEF systems are extremely expensive to repair and maintain, he said, describing the cost of replacement parts and filters as “atrocious.”He also explained that DEF systems just don’t work very well and cause a tractor to “burn a lot more diesel fuel” than it otherwise would.“
Apparently voiding the DEF system costs thousands of dollars but the money is recuperated in only two years from the diesel fuel savings and a reduction in maintenance costs. It’s hard to fault the farmers for protecting their livelihood and by doing so they are also helping to keep food costs down.
Great to see farmers are doing their part to stop the growth of the “circular economy” as it simply works to create more poverty in Canada and around the world.
It appears politicians in Ontario and elsewhere around the world are doing their very best to create economic sinkholes via the circular economy which continue to consume more and more of our tax dollars.
The Toronto Sun newspaper had a February 23, 2023 article written by Lorrie Goldstein noting a report released by the CCI (Canadian Climate Institute) disclosed Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions increased in 2021 by 19 million tons or 2.8%. Goldstein pointed out correctly that the results fly in the face of past assurances from the likes of PM Trudeau and former Minister of the Environment and Climate Change, Jonathan Wilkinson that they would decline! The article went on to point out the impossibilities to achieve the goals they had set unless they shut down Canada’s complete industrial sector along with our oil and gas sector. In other words unless they cripple the Canadian economy the goals, they have committed to will be unachievable!
While Goldstein correctly points out the negative place Trudeau and his minions now find themselves, the picture painted by the CCI’s report was actually spun differently by them! To wit: The CCI press release about the results had the following quote from Rick Smith, President of CCI:
“It’s promising to see Canada starting to make tangible progress in reducing carbon pollution, especially coming out of the pandemic. Time is short, and our goals are ambitious.Hitting those goals is crucial to Canada’s future security and prosperity.
Perhaps the foregoing quote from Smith (formerly head honcho at Environmental Defence) is simply a take on the old idiom; “don’t bite the hand that feeds you“ based on the CCI’s charitable status. A review of their year-end March 31, 2022 filing with the CRA indicates their employees are well paid and we should suspect Smith is at the top of the following chart from their filing:
It is also worth noting Rick Smith and Gerald Butts (PM Trudeau’s former Principal Advisor) are closely connected as both were the heads of two of the Strathmere Group’s 12 members as outlined in a series of articles. Smith also has a close relationship (they even co-authored a book) with Bruce Lourie, one of the CCI’s directors and he is also listed as the Secretary-Treasurer of the CCI in the CRA filings.
If one examines their CRA filing as a “charity” it discloses gross revenue of $2,487,656 with $2,433,119 (97.8%) of it simply our tax dollars handed to them by the federal government. Please note they didn’t claim any of their total expenditures of $3,646,724 as being “on charitable activities”.
It is apparent based on the numbers above the CCI overspent their revenue by about $1.159 million. Rest assured they will seek additional taxpayer funding and a recent search on the Government of Canada’s “Grants and Contributions” website indicates they were handed $500,000 on December 5, 2022 by the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change where Minister Steven Guilbeault now hangs his hat! The grant is reputedly to do a “Policy analysis and stakeholder views on climate and environmental impacts of inactive oil and gas wells“.
If one seeks financial information on the CCI website the only information one can find for their 2021-2022 year is the following one page “snapshot” and it’s in their “Annual Impact Report”:
I would think based on the foregoing, 99% of all Canadians would not consider anything the CCI contributes to Canada and Canadians to be what can be considered charitable.
The question that anyone examining the financial aspects of this “charity” called the Canadian Climate Institute should immediately ask is:
Why in hell should the CCI be considered a charity when here in Canada and in so many other places around the world we are seeing “energy poverty” skyrocket? Charitable food banks are pressed to help families suffering from poverty caused by increased costs of energy in the form of intermittent and unreliable renewable energy as well as carbon taxes on fossil fuels needed in so many aspects of our day to day living from farming to delivering the food to your local grocery store. Paying our tax dollars to ENGO such as the CCI amplifies the unjust treatment we are now experiencing!
To paraphrase Rick Smith’s ramble: Hitting the goals to reduce emissions is crucial if the plan is to increase energy poverty!
Time to right the wrongs and rescind the charitable rights of these hundreds of ENGO here in Canada using our tax dollars to further escalate energy poverty!