Muskrat Falls

NDP Consumer Affairs critic George Murphy (MHA, St. John’s East) says Newfoundland and Labrador consumers could easily end up paying for power they never use. The “take or pay” power purchase agreement commits Newfoundland and Labrador Hydro to buying 40 per cent of the power produced by the proposed Muskrat Falls project for 50 years, whether consumers in the province use the power or not.

 
NDP Leader Lorraine Michael

NDP Leader Lorraine Michael (MHA, Signal Hill-Quidi Vidi) says there is a very real possibility that the people of Newfoundland and Labrador could go broke paying for the Muskrat Falls development, have to sell the project to pay the debt, and then have to pay whatever the buyer decides to charge for electricity.

 

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for St. John's East.

MR. MURPHY: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

The take-or-pay power purchase arrangement will lock NL Hydro into buying 40 per cent of Muskrat power for fifty years. If all ratepayers do not use this power we still have to pay the amount stipulated under the take-or-pay arrangement by Nalcor.

 

MR. SPEAKER: The Leader of the Third Party.

MS MICHAEL: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

The loan guarantee term sheet for the Muskrat Falls Project allows for a sale or change of control of subsidiaries among the different parties to the loan guarantee. Section 4.11 does not specify which subsidiaries are referenced.

 
NDP Leader Lorraine Michael

NDP Leader Lorraine Michael was ready to speak for her full 15 minutes in what she admitted was an imperfect setting. Instead of the full week of debate on the Muskrat Falls project, the premier introduced a private member’s motion, limiting debate on the biggest expenditure in the province’s history to a maximum of two hours.

 
NDP MHA Christopher Mitchelmore

The NDP MHA for The Straits-White Bay North is hearing concerns from his constituents about increased electrical rates, particularly after the rate-stabilizing Public Utilites Board is taken out of the picture. Christopher Mitchelmore brought those concerns to Question Period in the House of Assembly today.

 
NDP Leader Lorraine Michael

In the House of Assembly today, NDP Leader Lorraine Michael (MHA, Signal Hill-Quidi Vidi) continued to question the wisdom of government forging ahead with the Muskrat Falls development. She says the people of Newfoundland and Labrador are being forced into a disproportionate risk.

 

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for The Straits – White Bay North.

MR. MITCHELMORE: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

 

MR. SPEAKER: The Leader of the Third Party.

MS MICHAEL:Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Emera has announced they will sanction the Maritime Link without waiting for a URB review, knowing they can walk away later for a $60 million fine if the Utility's decision is negative and the deal sours. The ratepayers of this Province have no such remedy.

 

NDP Consumer Affairs Critic George Murphy (MHA, St. John’s East) has serious concerns about the “take or pay” arrangement which will be in effect after the Muskrat Falls project is completed and producing energy.

 

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