Sousa returns to Duncan’s lying ways in raiding electricity debt charge revenue

Today’s economic statement from Ontario Finance Minister Sousa should be the last time we get data to demonstrate his theft of residual stranded debt charge revenue. I’ve written on this many times, so in this post I just want to cover the latest farcical accounting, but I’ll provide one more overview of what the “residual stranded debt” was meant to be, and how a charge of $7/MWh (0.7 cents/kilowatt-hour) ended up on electricity bills to address it.

Ontario Hydro was broken up with the electricity act of 1998, and the successor company left with the financial burdens was the Ontario Electricity Finance Corporation (OEFC). It’s a shell company that held about $20 billion more in liabilities than it had in assets (this is known as the OEFC Unfunded Liability). In order to pay the liabilities the OEFC was provided revenue tools; specifically payments in lieu of taxes (PIL) from sector businesses, and profits (above a certain number) from Hydro One and OPG – two successor companies of Ontario Hydro.

The Unfunded Liability that was not capable of being retired through PIL and sector revenues was called the “Residual Stranded Debt”, and to address that debt the residual stranded debt charge was added to our bills.

I was anticipating today’s lie, and here’s how it was pictured:


Let me explain how this is a lie.Read More »


record wind: what would the IESO say

Onshore and offshore wind turbines fed an all-time record of 32.6GW into the German grid on Wednesday, according to transmission operator TenneT said.

The high output forced transmission system operators to apply costly measures in order to stabilise the grid.

Since 9 November, TSOs have had to curtail 300MW of wind capacity and call up a daily amount between 200MW and 2.2GW of Germany’s winter reserve capacity to stabilise the grid.

The report on Germany, based on information from its “transmission operator” might have a related report in Ontario, which may have had record wind output recently except for the curtailments of a lot more than Germany’s 300MW.

Data from Ontario’s IESO indicates record wind ouptut of 3,297 megawatts for hour 16 of October 19th.

Other data indicates that earlier on the 19th, approximated 2,310 megawatts of wind was being curtailed (in hour 3).

My reporting for the day estimates over 26,000 megawatts of potential generation from contracted transmission-connected industrial wind turbines was curtailed on the 19th.

I estimate in Ontario on the 19th almost 1 in 4 megawatts of deemed or actual generation was curtailed or dumped at essentially no cost on export markets.

Germany’s Tennet communicated about the challenges and costs of high wind output there.

Ontario’s IESO communicated nothing.




finance minister claims he could be worse

a primer for yesterday’s News Release from Ontario’s Ministry of Finance

The Office of the Auditor General of Ontario reported on the Ontario government’s flippant disinterest in accounting for the Debt Retirement Charge (DRC) in its 2011 Annual Report:

Given that the DRC has been collected from electricity consumers for almost a decade and that more than $8 billion in DRC revenue has been collected during that time, our view is that the Minister should make a formal determination of the outstanding amount of the residual stranded debt in the near future and make this determination public.

Subsequently, the Ontario budget of 2012 included a section on the Residual Stranded Debt – which the DRC was introduced to retire:

residual stranded debt is estimated to be $5.8 billion as at March 31, 2011… the residual stranded debt is estimated to be $4.5 billion as at March 31, 2012. Residual stranded debt is estimated to further decline to $3.6 billion as at March 31, 2013.

“$3.6 billion as at March 31, 2013”

The next budget knew less, reporting the $4.5 billion as of March 31, 2012, ignoring March 31, 2013 and preparing to extend the DRC as simply a tax with:Read More »

Nuclear energy development news roundup for 11/9/15

Proposed Xe-100 pebble-bed nuclear reactor is designed for an abundant target market

Neutron Bytes

X-Energy’s Xe-100 pebble-bed nuclear reactor would be a technically and economically viable option to expand or replace an existing coal-fired plant, a joint study by X-Energy and South Carolina Electric and Gas has concluded. The results are part of a X-energy and South Carolina Electric & Gas Co. (SCE&G) joint study to examine the technical and economic feasibility of siting an Xe-100 pebble-bed nuclear reactor at a representative site within the SCE&G franchise territory

Key findings from the study include the ability of the small-scale high-temperature reactor to load-follow with a variable output as low as 25% power, while its small site requirement would enable it to be sited on existing facilities and use existing infrastructure.

The Xe-100 enables a utility to bring its fleet in line with state and federal greenhouse gas mandates with minimal disruption to its existing network, and the small-scale Xe-100 plant allows for smaller upfront…

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