Sunday, May 29, 2011

Jobs Lost, And Ontario's Cheap Electricity Exports

Ontario has been providing Quebec with cheap electricity following the loss of large industrial customers in Ontario to the cheaper electricity of Quebec.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Wind Jerks

Are you familiar with the term “Jerk”?

I came across the word a number of times in a fantastic series of comments attached to a very interesting article, CO2 avoidance cost with wind energy in Australia and carbon price implications, so I looked it up on wikipedia:

In physics, jerk, also known as jolt (especially in British English), surge and lurch, is the rate of change of acceleration; that is, the derivative of acceleration with respect to time, the second derivative of velocity, or the third derivative of position.”

Let's look at some jerks in Ontario's electricity system.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

How the IESO is Managing Surplus Supply

The Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) has been dealing with many hours where Ontario's baseload supply exceeds Ontario's demand - a situation now referred to as surplus baseload generation (SBG). In recent weeks, SBG is a condition that has existed up to 70% of all hours. Today, a media news release from the IESO included, "Exports have played a significant role in managing Surplus Baseload Generation (SBG) conditions in the past and the IESO will continue to utilize exports and other available options to address the SBG that is expected over the 18-month period," said Bruce Campbell, Vice President of Resource Integration.”

Exports have played a role. So has supply curtailment.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Aldyen Donnelly Article On Regressive, and Progressive, Taxation

Aldyen Donnelly: The indispensable report | Energy Probe
"The data clearly shows that energy consumption taxes (carbon-weighted or otherwise) are highly regressive–though not as regressive as value added consumption taxes. Though still imperfect, vehicle taxes appear much more equitable. And vehicle taxes that are pro-rated to vehicle weight and emission ratings (as opposed to kilometers of use) are almost progressive–shifting some of that load that would otherwise build up on middle income families (as in the actual 2008/09 UK data) to the higher income families."

10 for 10: Ontario's Surplus Baseload Generation

The latest SBG report shows there are only 10 hours during the next 10 days when Ontario is capable of not producing too much supply for Ontario's market.
Over the first 130 days of the year, Ontario's net exports grew 50% from last year, while the market price (HOEP) dropped 8%.  The variance between the price Ontarians pay, and exports, is the global adjustment.

In 2011 this means export customers have paid approximately $143.8 million dollars less than Ontarians would have paid for the same amount of electricity (3,745,460MWh of net exports at $38.39/MWh).

Thursday, May 19, 2011

"It's Not a Queston of Could, It's a Question of is that the best way to go"

I viewed Mr. Duguid's inteview, on The Agenda, shortly after reading, here, the Darlington new-build proposal's opponents continue to hammer that no reactor should be built because the government, and OPG, can't prove there aren't alternatives, and with some nonsensical moral tale about waste. I am constantly appalled by the negation of will implied in these arguments.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Anticipated Supply Problems in Washington State Arrive

BPA News - High river flows cause limits on thermal, wind generation

"High river flows generating a temporary oversupply of hydroelectricity caused the Bonneville Power Administration last night to partially and temporarily limit the output of non-hydroelectric energy, including fossil-fuel and other thermal generation and wind energy."

I wrote about this situation earlier, and sure enough, the greenshirt wind troughers aren't disappointing.  According to an article at, AWEA is really distressed that existing policies to protect fish are taking precedence over maximizing the profits of their fake industry.

The American Wind Industry Association (AWEA) in a statement on Tuesday called the decision “wrongheaded” and said the interim policy could potentially cost wind companies “tens of millions of dollars and stifle new investment in the Pacific Northwest"

Another wind industry article explains that being curtailed hurts wind producers far more because of how heavily they are subsidized.  I'm paraphrasing:
"However, curtailment impacts wind operators more than traditional power generators because a significant part of the income generated from a wind farm comes from tax and renewable-energy credits. These credits represent actual generation, so the less output from a wind farm, the fewer credits it accrues."

Ontario's Reduced Coal-Fired Generation Explained

The Ontario government recently announced, “Ontario's use of coal-fired power is down 90 per cent in the first three months of 2011, when compared to the same time frame in 2003."  This is good news, which is followed by some questionable claims regarding health impacts, and then the misleading statement that “Ontario is on the right track to building a clean, modern and reliable electricity system using renewable sources of power - like wind and solar.”   Wind and solar don't have much to do with the reduction of coal-fired generation.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Price of Ontario's Electricity Policies Hits New High In April

The Global Adjustment rate for April is $43.89/MWh, which is the highest it has ever been. The reality of the mess we are in is being hidden by the mainstream press deflecting the blame from the government, such as Metro Martin's, “a small proportion of the recent hikes can be attributed to subsidies, for the simple reason that few renewable energy projects are up and running yet.” At The Globe and Mail, Adam Radwanski toned down the not-due-to government policy theme so trendy in the media hub of Toronto; “Mr. Hudak stands to capitalize on pocketbook angst over rising energy prices for which green projects have (to an exaggerated extent) been blamed.”

Exaggerated eh?

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Ontario Pays Tribute to Our American Neighbours

A month ago I wrote on data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), noting it indicated the largest wind production states were not reducing emissions as quickly as the other states.  One notable exception was New York state, which is amongst the best performing states in reducing CO2, SO2 and NOx emissions since 1990.  I’ve been meaning to revisit this once more by comparing the generation, and consumption, histories of New York state, and Ontario.  Premier McGuinty jogged my memory when I read an article stating Mcguinty had argued, “The province imported a net $400 million worth of electricity in 2003, while last year it made a net $300 million from its sale.” 
The only way Ontario could have made anything from the sale is if the product had zero value – because $300 million is about the total received over the course of the year from the net exports of 8.8 TWh (that’s about $34/MWh).   In 2010 Ontarians paid about $65/MWh for the electricity we used (the charge per/kWh is an increasingly small portion of our total bills).