Top News

LETTER: Muskrat redemption

 A large portion of the wood that was cut to make way for the Muskrat Falls project is now being harvested and sold to biomass fuel companies. - FILE PHOTO
The Muskrat Falls hydroelectric development. — File photo

This province’s hydro energy resource developments are in a mess. Our latest project is set to become a millstone as soon as it goes on stream, while our Upper Churchill is generating billions in windfall revenues and profits for another province.

Unfortunately, in the Confederation of provinces that is Canada, we have been blocked from getting our hydro energy to outside markets by a neighbouring province, with the support of Ottawa. In the meantime, provision has been made through federal legislation to move oil energy across provincial borders to other markets. Why not do the same for hydro energy? There is no rational answer to why transport of the two forms of energy is treated differently, so the answer lies in politics.

Unfortunately, in the Confederation of provinces that is Canada, we have been blocked from getting our hydro energy to outside markets by a neighbouring province, with the support of Ottawa.

It is well past the time that we stop fighting for relief through our justice system. It will not happen because the system will not allow it to happen. Our status within the Confederation, and our track record through the justice system to date, apparently means that no matter what arguments we make, the only option available to us is to work through our neighbouring province on its terms. If nothing else, our experience with the Muskrat Falls and Upper Churchill developments should have taught us that, and Ottawa is complicit in the circumstances leading to the outcome of both projects.

Muskrat Falls is a clean energy project that fits into Ottawa’s green theme. Converting their loan guarantee to equity is one option available to them that would help the province in a big way and would be in keeping with their green theme. If they were to do so it would immediately take $7.9 billion in debt off the province’s books. It would help right our badly listing and sinking provincial ship and would show this province a little support from our central government when it is most urgently needed.

Rolly Card
St. John’s

RELATED:

Did this story inform or enhance your perspective on this subject?
1 being least likely, and 10 being most likely

Recent Stories