OPG 3rd Quarter 2019 results best since 2010

OPG released their 3rd Quarter results November 12, 2019 and no one noticed!

They had the best 3rd Quarter results since 2010, generating net income of $323 million up $48 million or 17.2% over 2018.  Generation was up modestly by .8 TWh (terawatt hours) or 4.4% with nuclear generation up 1 TWh to 11.6 TWh and hydro down by .2 TWh from 7 TWh to 6.8 TWh.  In the latter case the report notes “foregone” (spilled hydro) increased to .7 TWh in the 3rd Quarter (up from .4 TWh in 2018). The .7 TWh “foregone” could have supplied 300,000 average Ontario households in the quarter.

Revenue was up year over year by $138 million or 9.8% and the principal reason was the blessing from the OEB (Ontario Energy Board) to start the recovery process on the Darlington nuclear refurbishment process. It’s now in the third year of the 10-year plan.  As a result, just over $100 million of the increase in revenue came from increased prices on nuclear generation.  Comments in the report state: “The Darlington Refurbishment project, the execution of which began in 2016, continues to track on schedule overall and to the $12.8 billion budget.”  Let’s hope that continues! The rest of the increase came from the hydro sector and perhaps from the acquisitions made in the US by OPG.

The report notes, OPG generation in the quarter represented 50.4% of total generation (including net exports) in the province as reported by IESO up from 48.7% in the comparable 2018 quarter.

One disturbing find in the report marked as: Environmental and Sustainability went on to note:

Under the federal Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act (GGPPA), an Output-Based Pricing System (OBPS) for industrial facilities took effect on January 1, 2019 and a fuel charge came into effect on April 1, 2019 in Ontario. On July 10, 2019, OBPS regulations were published, including fuel-specific performance standards for electricity generation that apply retroactively beginning January 1, 2019. OPG has implemented processes to comply with the federal requirements and recover associated carbon costs to the extent possible.”

With the recent announcement OPG will acquire TC Energy’s (formerly TransCanada Corporation) portfolio of Ontario gas plants for $2.87 billion, one would assume under the GGPPA the Federal Government will seek increased fuel charges. The increased charges will result in OPG’s application for a rate increase to the OEB so that those costs will further increase the cost of electricity in Ontario.

The demise of the Wynne/McGuinty government who were responsible for Ontario’s electricity rates more than doubling during their term in office is over. Ontario ratepayers hoped to see a slowdown in those increases.  Now it looks to be taken over by the Feds who will impose their concept on how to generate our electricity.

There appears to be no end in sight to cleaning up the electricity mess in the province!

Pan-Canadian Expert Collaboration, Phase three

The collaboration alluded to in Phases one and two of this series are expanded on below. Those who read all three will hopefully recognize exactly what the “collaboration” seems designed to create.  Whatever unfolds in reports from the P-CEC appears certain to endorse a further burden on tax-payers in the form of increased “carbon taxes” beyond those currently envisaged.  As our former Prime Minister, Stephen Harper put it in defining “carbon taxes”: “they are attractive to governments simply because they raise revenue reliably.  In other words, they are not effective at reducing emissions.”

The two earlier articles suggested the collaborative group assembled may have been substantially influenced by Bruce Lourie, a major player in getting Ontario’s Liberal Party to pass the GEA. The GEA focused on closing two coal plants in Ontario and professed; we could cheaply replace them with industrial wind and solar energy and create 50,000 jobs.  Ontario ratepayers know how that unfolded!

Phase two in the series brought out the interests of the “insurance industry” and their support of the alleged “climate emergency” declared by an “Act of Parliament”.  The article singled out two individuals who will play a key role in orchestrating recommendations to our, soon to be announced, Environment and Climate Change Minister.

Shortly after the winning bid announcement by Minister McKenna, Insurance Business Canada had an article stating:  “According to Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC), the group will generate research and advice in three specific areas – carbon pricing, clean energy development, and strategies for climate-change adaptation – as “an independent, standalone organization.” and, “According to Feltmate, (refer Phase two) insurance claims for catastrophic loss events in Canada between 1983 and 2008 were in the range of $250 million to $400 million annually. However, in nine out of the last 10 years, catastrophic losses have gone over $1 billion, adjusted for inflation.”  This sets the tone for their upcoming recommendations!  I and others I’ve spoken with wonder, why, in view of insurance losses in Ontario, in respect to “flooding”, the Insurance Industry haven’t sued the IJC (International Joint Commission) for their instigation of “Plan 2014” raising water levels in Lake Ontario in particular, and causing hundreds of millions in losses in 2017 and 2019.  The State of New York has sued!

The first of this series noted, “There among the twenty-one (21) names in the “collaboration” was the Ivey Foundation and several others Mr. Lourie either helped to create or presumably supported by providing grants via his position as President of the Ivey Foundation.”

The particular one mentioned in the earlier article was the Ecofiscal Commission.  Its address is the Department of Economics at McGill University where the Chair of the Commission, Chris Regan, is Director of the Max Bell School of Public Policy and an Associate Professor in McGill’s Department of Economics.  The Ivey Foundation in their reports to the CRA Charities files from 2015 through to the 2018 filing indicates donations to McGill/Ecofiscal were $1.122 million and reports from the “grants” information on Ivey Foundation’s report indicates from 2015 to 2018 donations totaled $806,486. Perhaps an audit by the CRA would be worth pursuing!

Needless to say, all of the recommendations from Ecofiscal where Mr. Lourie and fellow collaborators are either commissioners (Stewart Elgie of Smart Prosperity is one) or advisors (Lourie is one) who push for a “carbon tax”. The “Commission” demonstrates a strong bias in presenting “myths” about carbon taxes while presenting only facts to support the myths but not the tax.  It appears the “Commission” or Lourie used their/his influence to get other charitable foundations to fund Ecofiscal as noted in an earlier article.

Here are another two collaborators!

Smart Prosperity Institute—a P-CEC “collaborator”

Now another of those P-CEC collaborators beyond the Intact Centre and  the Ivey Foundation is (SPI) “Smart Prosperity Institute” (formerly Sustainable Prosperity) headed up by Stewart Elgie. Elgie founded Ecojustice (a charitable legal institution with 2018 revenues of $7.4 million of which $4 million was spent on compensation and almost $700 thousand on consultants).  SPI appears to be a “not for profit” institution however, as it is associated with the University of Ottawa, you can donate via them, to obtain a tax receipt. Trying to secure information via filings of their 22 funders in the CRA Charities files was almost impossible and only a couple could be directly connected to SPI.  One of those was The Green Belt Foundation (GBF got $25 million in 2005 and another $20 million in 2012 from Ontario’s Provincial taxpayers) and they granted SPI $80K.

The foregoing is ironic as the current government in Ontario is fighting the “carbon tax” but indirectly taxpayer dollars will be used to support it!  One of the SPI “funders” listed is also supplemented by Ontario taxpayers and that is the Ontario Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change.  All Google searches for funding from them to the SPI came up empty!  Three of the other “funders” are Federal and as one would expect include Environment and Climate Change Canada.

The only other “funder” with obtainable information was the J.W. McConnell Foundation who granted SPI  $725,000 via the University of Ottawa. The SPI did not include the Ivey Foundation in their “funders” list but they received $120,990 from them via the University of Ottawa over three years and the Ivey Foundation also provided $105,000 in grants to Elgie’s other entity—Ecojustice.  It certainly appears there is a pretty close connection between Bruce Lourie and Stewart Elgie.

MaRS Discovery District—a P-CEC “collaborator”

MaRS Discovery District was a McGuinty creation owned by the province and granted charitable status so its annual filings can be found on the CRA Charities website.  In their year ended March 31, 2018 they received $2.9 million from the Federal Government and $31.7 million from the Government of Ontario. They also received $2.8 million from other charities.  Mars in turn claim charitable expenditures of $37.7 million out of the $48.3 million in total expenditures but don’t name any recipients.  Over the past three years they have received $300,000 from the Ivey Foundation.

Ironically, the Trillium Foundation is owned by the Government of Ontario, where Bruce Lourie formerly sat as a Director.  They have granted money to MaRS, ($413,700) to (CEGN)  Canadian Environmental Grantmakers Network (now called Environment Funders Canada) ($64,600) which Lourie founded and to Environmental Defence ($661,300) where he served as director and Chair of the Board when his friend Rick Smith was Executive Director.  Lourie is well connected to Tom Rand, the former head of the MaRS, “cleantech” sector

Oh, what tangled webs we weave!

Stay tuned as Phase Four will look at a few more of the P-CEC collaborators and their connections.

Pan-Canadian Expert Collaboration, Phase two

The objective of the first in this series was to make the reader aware of how the announcement of April 9, 2019 and the creation of the captioned came about. The Federal Ministry of Environment and Climate Change, under Minister McKenna was the visible creator but was she the puppet or the puppeteer?  The suggestion in the first of this series implied perhaps a background force played a key role in its creation. The Ivey Foundation and its President were highlighted as that possible force.

The President of the Ivey Foundation, Bruce Lourie, and his past activities, demonstrate he played a significant role in the confines of Ontario’s political landscape!  He and cohorts were very instrumental in creating the Green Energy and Green Economy Act (GEA), responsible for more than doubling Ontario’s cost of electricity.  Some of the players (Gerald Butts, Katie Telford and Ben Chin) associated with the McGuinty led Ontario government moved on to the Federal level and it appears Lourie and the Ivey Foundation may have also moved (not physically) where their influences would be readily accepted.

The captioned “collaboration” will be headed up by Kathy Bardswick, former CEO of Co-operators Group (2018 revenue $2.962 billion). Ms. Bardswick appears to be a believer in “climate change”, based on a 48 page brochure (referenced by Bardswick as a “toolkit”) issued in 2011 by the Co-operators. It has David Suzuki quotes and thanks his foundation for help in its creation. The brochure casually endorses Bruce Lourie’s co-authored book; “Slow Death by Rubber Duck”. Her message in the brochure included a remark indicating her belief in climate change: “Sustainable solutions for our world are going to require the collective participation of us all—government, businesses, non-governmental organizations, community groups, and families—working together.”

Just after the P-CEC was announced, Bardswick was named as the “head” of it.  She became “perturbed” shortly thereafter, “by a recent partisan attack from the office of Ontario Premier Doug Ford”. The article in the National Observer (they receive grants from the Ivey Foundation) noted: “Bardswick also sat on the government’s North American Free Trade Agreement Council on the Environment,” and, ”The body was formed in 2017 to advise Environment and Climate Change Minister Catherine McKenna on the environmental protections Ottawa was seeking in the trade talks to replace NAFTA.”

The partisan attack reported was; “David Tarrant, Ford’s executive director of strategic communications said that description was all “Liberal spin.” In a tweet, Tarrant cast a skeptical eye on the institute’s independence, calling it an “elite pro-carbon tax ‘institute’” that contained “puppets.” Based on Bardswick’s views expressed in the Co-operators “brochure” and her NAFTA engagement one would be inclined to agree with Tarrant.  It’s clear her views are aligned with those of the Environment Minister; she believes in “climate change”, advocates for “sustainable solutions”, presumably, coupled with a “carbon tax”! Ms. Bardswick rebuttal that she “did not join this institute and agree to initially lead it unless I was assured that this would be independent, and arms-length,” can’t be taken on its merit, based on her views! She also has no discernable scientific education that reflects on her ability to be non-partisan in her role as “head” of the P-CEC much like the “adaptation Chair” Blair Feltmate!

One of the “collaborators” taking part in the P-CEC is the Intact Centre on Climate Adaptation and the connected Interdisciplinary Centre on Climate Change, University of Waterloo. The Intact Centre is fully funded by Intact Insurance.  Intact Insurance had annual revenue (2018) exceeding $10 billion.  The concept of floods, ice storms, hurricanes, etc., linked to “climate change”, allows insurance companies to create other perceived insurance needs resulting in increased premiums to cover potential future losses.  The head of the “Intact Centre”, Blair Feltmate was appointed Chair of the “adaptation” arm of the “collaboration” research team. Feltmate was recently called out.  He was at a conservation event and claimed, “climate change has triggered a surge in flood events in recent years.” As Feltmate put it during his comments at the meeting: “The elephant in the room, from a climate-change perspective, is… too much water in the wrong places.” The CBC supported the claims by Feltmate and due to diligence from Robert Muir, a civil engineer, were required to perform a mea culpa.  Feltmate was also quoted in a National Observer article claiming, “flooding is the number one cost to Canada, relative to extreme weather risk driven by climate change”. The National Observer does not have an Ombudsman like the CBC and have not retracted Feltmate’s claims!

Both Feltmate and Lourie were speakers at the 2014 and 2016 Globe Series conferences so they may very well be acquainted.  The purpose of the conferences is summed up as: “GLOBE Series convenes world-renowned events that accelerate the clean economy.”  It matters not if they are or aren’t acquainted, however, as it’s safe to assume they both endorse the reputed “climate emergency”.

It appears conclusive the outcome of the report/recommendation’s forthcoming from the Pan-Canadian Expert Collaboration will be heavily influenced by Ms. Bardswick and Mr. Feltmate! Ms. Bardswick’s claim the “collaboration” will be “independent” is laughable as the likely recommendations from the P-CEC will surely endorse the “climate emergency” related to the bill Minister McKenna got Parliament to pass June 17, 2019!

We can all look forward to “carbon tax” increases and higher insurance rates that will simply make life more difficult for the average family.

PS:  Just received our natural gas heating bill for the month which included the “Federal carbon charge”. HST was also charged on the carbon tax amount raising the percentage of taxes (compared to gas and delivery costs) to 24.8%.  Over 67% (3.5 million) of Ontario households heat with natural gas based on the 2016 census.

Pan-Canadian Expert Collaboration Phase 1

Back on October 30, 2018 the Federal Ministry of Environment and Climate Change issued a press release telling us they intended “to partner with independent climate experts to support ambitious action on clean growth and climate change”.

Confronted with the word “expert” takes one back in time to a British comedy.  Benny Hill, of the Benny Hill Show, frequently provided humorous definitions of words in his show and his take on the word “expert” stood out.  Merriam Webster’s first definition of the word is “experienced” and breaks the word into two syllables which are “ek-spert”.  Benny Hill went further suggesting; “ek” is the unknown and “spert” is a drip under pressure therefore an expert is an “unknown drip under pressure.

From all appearances we have far too many experts in politics, bloated bureaucracies (federal, provincial and municipal) and ENGO who exhibit those comedic traits on a regular basis. The 21 organizations who got together, to create the “Pan-Canadian Expert Collaboration” (to partake of the $20 million of tax dollars Minister McKenna promised), are all on the same page;  ie: climate change is the end of the world.  No “experts” with differing views appear to have been invited to join the “Collaboration”!

Award of the contract was obviously slated to align with the views of Minister McKenna and her “climate emergency”.  One wonders if the “collaboration” was in point of fact orchestrated and if so, who was the conductor?  My vote goes to Bruce Lourie!

Reasoning on the foregoing is related to how McKenna endorsed Bruce Lourie’s views disclaiming Doug Ford’s cancellation of the Ontario “cap and trade” tax as noted in the below tweet!

Catherine McKenna 🇨🇦Verified account @cathmckenna “Scrapping cap and trade and the Green Ontario Fund will do nothing to lower electricity rates, what it will do is cause huge disruption and costs to Ontario businesses.” Smart analysis by @brucelourie of the Ivey Foundation nationalobserver.com/2018/06/21/analysis/bruce-lourie-doug-fords-scrap-and-pay-plan-explained …

Lourie’s article in the National Observer appeared shortly after the Ford led Ontario Conservative Party, were elected and the “carbon tax” was about to be killed. Co-incidentally the Ivey Foundation, where Lourie holds the title of President, has provided grants directed to the National Observer.  Mckenna and Lourie were also together as speakers in Ottawa in October 2016 at the Canadian Climate Forum’s annual symposium shortly after the Federal “carbon tax” was announced.  One would assume they are well acquainted and hold similar beliefs in the “climate change” religion.

In the midst of the recent Federal election campaign, Lourie had another article appear on October 18, 2019 in the National Observer noting, amongst other negative comments:  “If Scheer wins” then “leaders who seek to delay action will dig in on dismantling climate policies, ensuring that Canada returns to global pariah status on the international stage.”  Lourie has apparently labelled all conservatives “pariahs’”.

On April 9, 2019 Minister McKenna’s Ministry; Environment and Climate Change Canada, announced the winning bid to create the “new independent climate institute”, was the Pan-Canadian Expert Collaboration. There among the twenty-one (21) names in the “collaboration” was the Ivey Foundation and several others Mr. Lourie either helped to create or presumably supported by providing grants via his position as President of the Ivey Foundation. One example is the “Ecofiscal Commission” (one of 21 “collaborators”) where Lourie also holds an “Advisor” title alongside political luminaries such as, Paul Martin, Michael Harcourt and Jean Charest. Needless to say, the Ivey Foundation made substantial grants to the Ecofiscal Commission to possibly (?) ensure the right message was forthcoming!

The Ivey Foundation is a charity/foundation registered with the CRA. A review of the information filed by them for their December 31, 2018 report indicates they had five employees one of whom makes somewhere between $250,000 and $299,999.  One would assume that individual is the President.

The Ivey Foundation, issued zero (0) tax receipts and did not complete the CRA’s “Schedule 7–Political Activities”.  In the filings with the CRA, charities/foundations are obliged to report; “Amounts provided to other organizations” and to name the organization and the “gift amount”. They must also indicate if it is an “Associated charity” with a simple “YES” or “NO”.  In all cases the 2018 report (and prior ones) of Ivey’s filings state, “NO” to that question!  Was that a true response, particularly as it applies to the Ecofiscal Commission, the grants they received from the Ivey Foundation and the “advisor” position their President holds in the Commission?

Lourie was the key speaker at the York University; Dr. David D. J. Bell Lecture on October 22, 2019 and his biography, appearing on the web-page, outlines some of his creations as well as a few of his past and present executive titles and directorships. It doesn’t however, highlight his myriad connections or influences on politicians in the past or present times.

The President of the Ivey Foundation, by all appearances and actions, is well connected with several of those who received grants from the Foundation and are now part of the collaborating family! Were they, and the other 20 collaborators, chosen because they will recommend a higher carbon tax than the one previously announced?

Remember, as Minister McKenna has stated, we are in the midst of a “climate emergency”, so perhaps, we should anticipate they will look to increase the tax!

Hydro One’s 3rd Quarter 2019 results will make shareholders happy and distribution customers unhappy

Hydro one just released their 3rd Quarter results and net income after taxes increased from $194 million to $241 million or 29.4%.  Net income increased by only $14 million or 6.2% after adjusting the 2018 results upwards for the costs associated with the failed Avista acquisition.

Let’s look at those results by Hydro One’s client base of transmission (generators and local distribution companies or LDC) and distribution (ratepayers).

Transmission Revenue and Income Down                                                                                    What is interesting about their results is it shows transmission revenue decreased by $50 million (down 10.1%) as “peak demand” keeps falling.  Year over year the latter fell by 1,805 GWh (gigawatt hours) or 7.9%.  As a result, net income (before financing and taxes) from the transmission business dropped by $55 million or 19.2% from $287 million to $232 million.

Distribution Revenue and Income Up                                                                                       On the other side of their business Hydro One’s distribution revenue (net of purchased power) was up from $370 million to $403 million for a $33 million (+ 8.9%) gain and the revenue growth translated to a $33 million jump in net income (before financing and taxes).  The latter increased from $120 million to $153 million (+27.5%) year over year.

The jump in distribution income occurred despite the fact Hydro One’s 1.4 million customers reduced their consumption from 6,817 GWh to 6,627 GWh for a decline 190 GWh or 2.8%.  The forgoing means the average delivery cost per kWh increased from 5.43 cents/kWh to 6.08 cents/kWh year over year and amounts to a jump of 12%.   The 12% increase is co-incidentally what we were promised to see as a reduction in our rates by the Ford government.

Summary                                                                                                                                                 While all customers are billed for both delivery and transmission costs, the latter tends to represent a very small charge whereas delivery costs represent (on average) about 30% of your monthly bill.  Hydro One’s delivery costs however, are closer to 40% so it is disappointing to see that portion of the bill for their 1.4 million customers keeps climbing at rates well above inflation.

Getting rid of the $6 million man did nothing to reduce Hydro One’s delivery costs!

Consuming less drives up costs for Class B ratepayers

The IESO (Independent Electricity System Operator) released their September 2019 Monthly Market Report last week.  Ontario’s total consumption was 10.319 TWh (terawatt hours).  Looking back as far as September 2010 for comparison (the year following enactment of the GEA) Ontario consumption in September 2019 was lower than every year since then.  Consumption by Class B ratepayers this past September was down 8.7% (690.000 MWh-750,000 average households’ annual consumption) from September 2018. Class A ratepayers also consumed less (102,000 MWh or 3%) compared to September 2019.

Consuming less means lower costs, right?

The foregoing question/assertion certainly applies to pretty well everything we consume, if the price remains stable.

Due to the perplexity of how the electricity system functions in Ontario consuming less has a limited ability to reduce our costs.  Each and every generation source is basically treated differently in respect to their rank; on access to the grid, pricing (guaranteed or set by the OEB), length of contract term(s), and their perceived effect on global warming!  Both solar and wind generation, as examples of the latter, are granted “first to the grid” rights meaning they rank higher than nuclear plants and hydro generation units.  Additionally, original contract(s) offered prices in 2010 guaranteed for 20 years with large solar at 63.5 cents/kWh and wind at 13.5 cents/kWh along with a 20% guaranteed escalation clause related to increases in the cost of living (CoL).  At the same time IESO must contend with a trading market referenced as HOEP (Hourly Ontario Energy Price). IESO buys or sells generation based on shortages or surpluses to our grid connected markets such as New York, Michigan, etc.   What the HOEP values generation at and what we pay for it via those contracts evolved into what is known as the GA (Global Adjustment Mechanism) ie; contract value minus HOEP = GA.  Contracting for unreliable intermittent generation like wind and solar has made Ontario a supplier of cheap power for Michigan, NY, Quebec and other connected markets as the GA is not a part of the HOEP sale price.

As noted, Class B ratepayers consumed 8.7% less power in September 2019 versus 2018 and IESO reports our all-in cost (GA+HOEP) was $136.97/MWh versus $115.78 in 2018 for a jump of $21.19/MWh or 18.4%!  In the case of Class A ratepayers, because the HOEP fell from $29.94 in 2018 to $14.34 in 2019 they saw a reduction in their cost per MWh falling 7.7% from $77.70/MWh in 2018 to $71.73 in 2019.  The methodology of Class A pricing results in Class B ratepayers paying more of the GA when the HOEP is lower.

The next question one should ask is why is the HOEP lower if we consume less?

That question is related to facts such as, wind and solar generation get “first to the grid” rights.  As noted, September was a low consumption month as are most spring and fall months but that is when wind (in particular) generates the bulk of its power and is surplus to our needs.  The result is IESO is obliged to accept it and sell via the HOEP market or curtail it, which we also pay for.  IESO will also steam off nuclear or spill hydro both of which we also pay for.  When they are selling off the surplus our neighbours may not need the power but if it is really cheap, they will snap it up.  In September, as an example TX (transmission connected) and DX (distribution connected) wind combined was (according to my friend Scott Luft) 948,951 MWh including 141,485 MWh of curtailed wind.  Together the costs of unneeded generation was $126 million. The accepted wind generation was HOEP valued at less than $7.4 million adding $118.6 million to the GA pool. As it turned out accepted wind represented 75.7% of our net exports of 1,067,040 MWh and 50.9% of our total exports of 1,586,880 MWh in September. We clearly didn’t need wind generation in September nor since we started handing out those contracts!

To make the foregoing much clearer a read of Scott Luft’s recent post provides an excellent review of how much wind (accepted and curtailed) he calculated, was not exported.  It is truly shocking to see it is less than 10% in each year going back to 2006. Using September’s costs as the base to calculate how much it has affected ratepayers and taxpayers in Ontario for its output (over 37 TWh) since 2006 is a simple task.

Shockingly it represents a pocketbook cost of over $5.5 billion.

The electricity sector has taken $5.5 billion from the pockets of Ontario’s ratepayers/taxpayers just for wind related contracts.  The $5.5 billion could have actually been used to provide things like; better health care, tax reduction, infrastructure investments, electricity price reduction or flattening which would have attracted investments and created jobs.  Instead, we allowed our provincial government to hand out lucrative contracts to foreign wind and solar developers.  Many of those who rushed here to obtain those contracts have taken our money and sold their projects to our government pension funds and left Ontario for “greener” fields!

What the above shows is the Green Energy and Green Economy Act was a disaster for Ontario and will continue to negatively affect us until the contracts expire or our current government acts to cancel or amend them!

Wind turbines-clearly not needed

Noted in a recent article was the following admission by Robert Hornung, President of CanWEA (Canadian Wind Energy Association); “wind, which tends to generate most of its power at night,”!  His reflection was related to the very strong probability CanWEA will merge with CanSIA and the merger will reputedly produce harmony as solar generates power when the sun shines.

What Hornung failed to admit was wind habitually produces power during low demand times which are a regular occurrence in Ontario during Spring and Fall months.  The month of October is confirming its bad habit which costs Ontario ratepayers dearly.

A recent example of the foregoing occurred on October 23rd when wind was blowing during the night and during the day.  IESO’s “Generators Output and Capability Report” discloses wind was blowing!  Approximately 47,000 MWh of wind was accepted into the grid and about 50,650 MWh were curtailed.  So, wind could have delivered 97,650 MWh when Ontario demand averaged 13,910 MW and peaked at 16,235 MW for the day.  Contracted nuclear at 10,700 MW of capacity could have easily teamed up with some of the 8,000 MW of contracted hydro and supplied all our needs.  During high demand periods in the summer and winter months gas plants can easily supply additional needs when demand exceeds nuclear and hydro’s capacity.

The IESO report also suggests we were steaming off nuclear (and paying for it) and probably spilling hydro (which we also pay for) but IESO don’t disclose either of the latter two events.  To top things off we were paying gas plants to idle (around $2.5 million per day). Many of them were originally contracted to back up wind and solar for when the wind isn’t blowing or the sun doesn’t shine.

The effect on ratepayers, in simple terms, is, we picked up the costs of wind’s generation as well as the costs of curtailment.  We paid $120/MWh (megawatt hour) for curtailed wind and $135/MWh for grid accepted wind.  The total cost for wind (without factoring in costs related to spilled hydro, steamed off nuclear or idling gas plants) on the 23rd therefore was $12,423,000 or $264/MWh (26.4cents/kWh).

When IESO finally published their Daily Market Summary for that day it disclosed the average HOEP (hourly Ontario energy price) was in negative territory at -0.88($/MWh).  It also disclosed Ontario’s net exports (exports minus imports) averaged 1,943 MW per hour so totaled approximately 46,600 MW or 400 MW less than grid accepted wind.

At the CanWEA conference where Hornung uttered his omission he also stated the following:  “This opens up some interesting opportunities for wind for two reasons: 1) wind energy can provide more services to the grid than just low-cost energy, and can support grid reliability if encouraged to do so as regulatory and market frameworks modernize; ”.  The activities on the day this article highlights and most other spring and fall days clearly demonstrate, wind energy is neither, low-cost energy or has abilities to support grid reliability (forced curtailment does)!

What the above clearly shows is the $12.4 million we paid for the 47,000 MW of grid accepted wind was simply Ontario ratepayers/taxpayers being forced to give our money away to NY, Michigan, etc. without the ability to stop it!

The time has come for Hornung to admit all the failings of industrial wind turbines!