Monday, August 10, 2009

Run of River Games

When the government holds a small public meeting in the tiny Kootenay village of Kaslo and 1200 very vocal people show up, you know something is afoot.

The something is Campbell's determination to sell off B.C. rivers to private power and buy back those unneeded kilowatt hours.

This 3P fiasco is known as the "run-of-river" issue.

It is but a tiny sliver in the over-all Campbell agenda of turning government resources repeatedly into private free enterprise profit centres.

It is of a piece with BC Rail and toll roads and toll bridges and twinned highways and who knows how many other initiatives and deals are being dreamed and made while we slumber.

Mark Hume has written an excellent column in today's Globe, in which he says, among many other things, "A lot of IPPs are running into opposition in the province. People don't seem to much like the idea of a lot of small rivers being dammed by private developers, who will then sell the power to BC Hydro."

For his efforts, Hume has been called by one commentator that horror of horrors "a disingenuous romantic."

Well, add to the list of disingenuous romantics me and about 100,000 other local citizens who see clearly through the transparency of this agenda and do not like it and will continue to oppose it.


Norman Farrell said...

To be called a disingenuous romantic by river rapers is a fine compliment.

Norman Farrell said...

That fool who calls Mark Hume disingenuous is dangerously wrong. He/She claims that demand reduction cannot be achieved, therefore we must build new generating facilities. That we should do this by destroying pristine lands of British Columbia is absurd. Demand reduction must be the priority. It is essential and inevitable.

The IPP movement is driven by greed for easy dollars guaranteed by Deceiver Campbell's promise to have the public pay billions to repurchase the public assets he gives away, in many cases to friends and associates.

This is like me allowing a stranger to build a shed in my back yard after I agree to rent it in perpetuity for twice its market value, without regard to whether or not I need it or the fact that I could build my own for a fraction of the long term cost.

Anonymous said...

I have to laugh at those ridiculous commercials for hybrid cars, showing tranquil forest scenes with appreciative deer, and thankful little birdies chirping.
What do trees need to survive? CARBON DIOXIDE.
That hideous pollution, without which there would be no flora, no fauna, no humans, nothing, nada.

Gazetteer said...

Very, very interesting how often the excellent work of Mr. Hume is commented upon/seriously discussed by so many these days (and not just on this issue) compared to, say, all the heavy hitters combined that are toiling for the other proMedia monolith 'round here.


Anonymous said...

I am less angry than I am very frightened by the Liberal government. They're supposed to be doing the people's bidding, are they not? They're not supposed to be pulling us around by a ring in our nose. What can we do, David? I'm frightened.

David Berner said...

What can we do?

This is a great question.

I will tell you what we can do.

We can do the same thing we always do when in the prescence of a bully or a tyrant or a liar.

We can pull the sheets on them. We can shout out loud in every available way at every available time what the truth is.

Write letters to newspapers. Call radio shows. Become a pain in the ass..i.e., a real citizen!

Let these transparent clowns know that we see through them.

Ron H said...

To that end, Bill Tieleman has almost 70K members in his Facebook group, NO BC HST ( and a rally is planned for the Aug 25. See

Mike Macdonald said...

The truth always get smeared just enough to narrowly separate lies and truth by semantics.

This issue of private dams sits close to home for me ever since I got private a tour of the hydro building in Burnaby.

I felt like I was on X-Files and I was finally hearing “the truth”.

Hydro has an entire floor dedicated to predicting domestic loading based on weather, time of year, satellite images and trending.

It is amazing to see; one area literally looks like a NASA space launch with screens and images 270degrees around - all for predicting domestic electricity loads – or more to the point to predict how much power they can sell.

The information (available power can be sold) is sent over to another huge high-rise downtown – PowerEx.

This building full of power brokers, or Brokers selling power, thrives as they sell to the highest bidder. A higher-up in Hydro explained to me it’s like having a table full of cash and just needing to push it off a table into a Provincial tub.

I asked…”But I hear Hydro needs to buy power sometimes…” and I heard a few people chuckle like some secret joke was being breached upon.

To my dismay they told me a further truth I never realized until that moment…we buy power when it is cheaper to buy than make…

Seems a Hydro-electric dam can be turned from full power to near no power in a short time period, so BC can ramp the dams up and down to match load.

However, Alberta and Washington use thermal-electrical facilities which take extremely long times to cool off or heat up. This means at night when loading is very low, these facilities are still eating large amounts fuel to generate very little power.

So at night time they sell power to BC Hydro for less than we can make it for; of course we turn the dams down and buy cheap power from our neighbors at night.

The Olympic-Overspending-Broke-BCLP in charge of our Province start anther spin…

”we need more power they say” (Falsely)…

”look we buy power from the USA they say” (out of context)…

narrowly separating lies and truth.


They can’t easily privatize Hydro because Campbell has already been caught up in one scandal with BC rail.

So, they get this idea to allow private-environment destroying dams and force BC hydro to buy the private power and then sell it.

Hydro even has to pay way more for this power than it costs them to normally make it; a great deal for anyone in a position to open a private dam right now.

Spin Spin Spin…Lie Lie Lie…its all the same result – we are choosing to take more (Much Much More) from the environment than we need. We are selling out the environment to pay our bills, making private BCLP friends rich…all while claiming to be green and spending unchecked on the 2010 Montreal Style Olympic debt legacy.

If we are going to build Dams, do it with Hydro keeping public control, don’t lie to the public, and protect the environment for the future.