Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Spin, Spin, Spin: A Star Embarassment

Multiple Toronto Star writers made statements that deserve repudiation yesterday.

Liberal party propagandist Metro Martin Regg Cohn concluded "Where would Tim Hudak take Ontario?" with:
Whether your policy is colour-coded white, green or Tory blue, to lead is to choose. And disclose.
With no undue respect for Mr. Hudak, it's a remarkably stupid statement to be made after the non-disclosure, to the legislature, that would have brought an end to the Liberal government if Mr. Hudak and Ms. Horwath enjoyed respecting the electorate more than they enjoy bitching.  Mr. McGuinty was elected in part on the promise to eliminate coal by 2007 and a promise not to raise taxes.
We know that defined policy is irrelevant to electoral success in Ontairo.  Metro Martin is one explanation of how that is possible.

I follow The Toronto Star's Tyler Hamilton, and often find interesting tidbits is his articles in the Star and on his blog.  Like all entrenched in urban Toronto's fashionable green scene, he's also capable of saying incredibly stupid things.  

Last night, as Sandy was having her way with New York city, Mr. Hamilton tweeted:
If you think more than twice is good, you'd have to be really impressed with 1431 times the output of coal, which is what the IESO's output and capability report shows in Hour 1 of Friday the 26th, when the Hourly Ontario Energy Price was negative $128.09/MWh , and we were purchasing about 1431 MW of wind at around $135/MWh and exporting about 2254MW.
That's a hit of ~$375 thousand dollars.

Mr. Hamilton tweeted during an hour of peak demand (7 pm - although the IESO data must have been showing the 17th hour data still if wind was doubling coal).  By 11 pm the price had gone negative and wind continued producing anyway.  By hour 24 wind was producing 19 times what coal was, purchased for about $155 thousand and sold at a loss of $155 thousand.  Combining the cost of purchases with the costs of sales, from hour 23 of the 29th to hour 6 of the 30th the cost to Ontarians is approximately $2 million.

If wind had been curtailed, at a minimum the $800 thousand of negatively priced exports could have been avoided.  In many parts of the world the dispatching down of wind is done from a distant control room - occasionally the control room of the system operator.

Not here.

That system operator is currently feigning a process on redoing a stakeholder group with the intent of reducing consumer representation and increasing embedded (read solar) representation.  This follows the disappearance of their will to protect consumers in their process for establishing standard operating procedures in curtailing supply during surplus generation events.

The $2 million loss over 7 hours last night is a direct result of the unwillingness of the mainstream media to recognize the issues surrounding the procurement of intermittent generation.

The Canadian Wind Energy Association (CanWEA) was on Twitter the hour after pricing turned positive:
It may have been enough to meet the electricity needs of Mississauga - most of Ontario has one billion reasons not to worry about how the southwestern GTA gets supplied.

It's more likely it was enough to meet the needs of Ann Arbour, Dearborn, and Erie - at that hour exports to the US were 1453MW.

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