Archive | Mining Power Issues

Make Ontario hydro great again by reviving the Common Sense Revolution – by Lawrence Solomon (Financial Post – June 29, 2018)

https://business.financialpost.com/

Ontario was once known as the engine of Canada’s economy. Today that engine is sputtering after a decade and a half of anemic growth. The province faces a deteriorating credit rating and its runaway $325-billion debt, the highest of any subnational jurisdiction in the Western world, will balloon to $400 billion in six years.

Ontario’s power plants were once called the province’s crown jewels, lauded as the single biggest symbols of the province’s success.

Today, the power sector is the single biggest reason for the province’s fall, the victim of a politically correct Green Energy Act that scrapped high-performing plants in favour of renewable-energy losers that forced Ontarians to pay some of the continent’s highest electricity rates, leading to an exodus of some 300,000 manufacturing jobs and to suffering in much of the provincial economy outside the Greater Toronto Area. Continue Reading →

Ignore the green lobby, Doug Ford. Ontarians voted for affordable energy this time – by Peter Shawn Taylor (Financial Post – June 12, 2018)

http://business.financialpost.com/

Peter Shawn Taylor is a journalist, policy research analyst and a contributing writer for Canadians for Affordable Energy.

Elections are often considered to be referendums on the economy. When the economy is performing well, incumbent governments are supposed to benefit from a contented electorate. That’s not what happened in Ontario.

By most measures, the Ontario economy is doing just fine. Unemployment, one of the most important indicators for voters, is the lowest it’s been in several decades. GDP growth is in the two-per-cent range — decent, if not spectacular. Housing starts and other measures of consumer spending seem reasonably strong as well.

Nevertheless, Ontario’s long-governing Liberals were just shown the door in spectacular fashion. Voters were willing to look past the Liberals’ ugly scandals in previous elections for the sake of predictability. But when voters looked at the economy this time, they plainly could not get past one aspect of it that was actually in horrible shape: Energy affordability. Continue Reading →

The diesel-addicted mining industry is finally embracing renewable energy, but it’s not just because of the environment – by Gabriel Friedman (Financial Post – June 11, 2018)

http://business.financialpost.com/

With diesel prices rising in tandem with oil prices, the quest for sustainability has pushed many companies to look closely at their energy usage

About a 10-hour drive northwest of Toronto, in an area with no history of mining and little exploration, Goldcorp Inc. is tunneling a hole, currently at least 120 meters below the pine tree forests and lakes that dot the surface, for what it hopes will be one of its most sustainable mines yet.

Borden, as the mine is to be called when it starts producing in 2019, will be modest in size at about 250,000 ounces of gold per year under current estimates.

But Goldcorp harbours big ambitions to make it the first all-electric underground mine in Canada where everything from the trucks that haul ore, to the ventilation system that provides oxygen to its subterranean workers, run off energy taken from the electrical grid. Continue Reading →

Sudbury Accent: Move 10,000 civil service jobs North [Part 3 of 5] – by Stan Sudol (Sudbury Star – June 5, 2018)

http://www.thesudburystar.com/

Without a doubt, the provincial economy overall is doing great. Growth rates of 2.8 per cent in 2017 and a slightly lower rate of 2.4 per cent predicted for this year has allowed the Ontario to gain 335,000 new jobs and lowered unemployment to 5.5 per cent in March.

However, the vast majority of that prosperity is focused on the Greater Toronto Area (GTA). In fact, over the past decade, roughly 80 per cent of new jobs created in Ontario went to the GTA, 10 per cent to Ottawa and the rest of the province had to make due with the remaining 10 per cent.

Is it any wonder why the GTA is drowning in prosperity, with crowded subways, congested highways and an over-inflated housing market?

In the1980s, former Liberal premier David Peterson had an innovative vision of sharing the job wealth with the rest of the province as the government is a major employer. He transferred 1,600 civil service jobs from a number of ministries to Northern Ontario. Thousands of other jobs were also moved to various cities in southern Ontario like Kingston, Peterborough, Orillia and Guelph. Continue Reading →

How Doug Ford can end Ontario’s suffering from expensive electricity — instantly – by Lawrence Solomon (Financial Post – May 4, 2018)

http://business.financialpost.com/

By all accounts, Doug Ford, a bruiser who polls predict will be Ontario’s next premier, lacks a deep understanding of the intricacies of energy policy. The result for Ontarians, if he follows through on his election campaign’s unsophisticated themes, will be basic, and beneficial: an end to the esoteric policies that have brought the province to ruin.

Ford vows to stop taxing carbon by scrapping the Wynne government’s cap-and trade system, which currently costs a typical Ontario household $500 a year, projected to rise to $2,500 a year by 2022. Doing so would pit Ford against Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and the federal government, which threatens to carbon-tax Ontarians if Ford refuses to.

But that seems an empty threat — the federal Liberals would be reluctant to impose a carbon tax on Ontarians when running for re-election next year. Even if the federal government does impose a carbon tax on Ontario, the Supreme Court may strike it down as unconstitutional — some legal scholars believe Trudeau has improperly intruded into an area of provincial jurisdiction. Continue Reading →

NEWS RELEASE: NAN APPLAUDS LANDMARK INFRASTRUCTURE FUNDING ANNOUNCEMENT

THUNDER BAY, ON: Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN) Grand Chief Alvin Fiddler, on behalf of the Executive Council, applauds the landmark funding announced today for a major First Nation led infrastructure project, as Wataynikaneyap Power was awarded $1.6 billion to connect remote First Nation communities to the provincial power grid.

“This is a major achievement, and I honour the determination of Wataynikaneyap Power to bring reliable supplies of electricity to our remote First Nations. Wataynikaneyap has made tremendous progress connecting 16 remote First Nations to the provincial electricity grid in the first phase of this project, and we are pleased that Ontario has funded the expansion of this vital infrastructure to more remote communities.

Connecting our remote First Nations to the provincial energy grid will finally end their reliance on costly and dirty diesel generation and help bring health and economic benefits to our communities.” Continue Reading →

East-West Tie could groom a generation of Indigenous skilled workers – by Ian Ross (Northern Ontario Business – December 20, 2017)

https://www.northernontariobusiness.com/

Next year’s start of construction of the East-West Tie Transmission Project will be a “huge win” to enable Indigenous communities on the north shore of Lake Superior to recruit and grow a homegrown skilled workforce.

“I think everyone’s eyes are going to open,” said Red Rock Indian Band councillor Matthew Dupuis, a director for SuperCom Industries, which is partnering with the project’s lead contractor.

Supercom is a contracting and training joint venture run by six First Nation communities across whose traditional land the power line upgrading project will cross. Its mandate to maximize First Nations involvement in the $700-million corridor project by supplying skilled labour, negotiating service and supply contracts, and cultivating business partnerships. Continue Reading →

75,000 manufacturing jobs lost — that’s the price of Ontario’s electricity disaster – by Ross McKitrick and Elmira Aliakbari (Financial Post – October 19, 2017)

http://business.financialpost.com/

Global factors cannot explain Ontario’s performance. Clearly electricity prices are to blame

In the 1990s and into the 2000s, Ontario was a low-electricity-cost jurisdiction. This was a competitive advantage for the province, helping attract business and foster economic growth.

Of course, in recent years, due largely to the Green Energy Act and its inefficiencies, Ontario electricity prices have soared, hurting industrial competitiveness, especially in the manufacturing sector where electricity is a major cost.

The results have been devastating. Between 2005 and 2015, Ontario’s manufacturing output fell by 18 per cent and manufacturing employment fell by 28 per cent. More specifically, from 2008 to 2015, Ontario’s manufacturing job levels fell from 805,170 to 688,735. Continue Reading →

Why Energy-Rich Australia Suffers the World’s Priciest Power – by Perry Williams (Bloomberg News – October 6, 2017)

https://www.bloomberg.com/

A bungled transition from coal to clean energy has left resource-rich Australia with an unwanted crown: the highest power prices in the world.

New Yorkers pay half as much as Sydneysiders to keep the lights on, despite Australia boasting among the world’s largest coal and natural gas reserves, as well as ideal conditions for clean power generation. A decade of political dithering and climate policy missteps have set its patchwork power system adrift, ratcheting up manufacturing costs and hurting consumers with a doubling in electricity prices since last year and rising risks of blackouts.

“It is not a bit of a mess, it is a major mess,” said Sanjeev Gupta, 46, the British billionaire owner of Liberty House Group, who saw firsthand the effects of policy neglect after buying an ailing steel-making business in blackout-beleaguered South Australia in July. Continue Reading →

Glencore Zambia Unit May Fire 4,700 Workers Amid Power Spat – by Taonga Clifford Mitimingi and Matthew Hill (Bloomberg News – August 24, 2017)

https://www.bloombergquint.com/

(Bloomberg) — Glencore Plc’s copper unit in Zambia said a dispute over electricity fees that has already led to reduced power supply may result in the dismissal of 4,700 workers.

Copperbelt Energy Corp. lowered supplies to Mopani Copper Mines after the company refused to pay new power prices introduced by the government at the start of the year. Mopani said the fee increase wasn’t part of its agreement with Copperbelt. Mopani, which employs about 15,000 people including contractors, has notified the government of the planned job losses, Labor Minister Joyce Nonde-Simukoko said by phone.

“It has become necessary for Mopani Copper Mines to curtail some areas of its operations due to the restriction of power,” the Glencore unit said in an emailed statement on Tuesday. “We expect that we shall effectively have to close several areas and our scaled-back operations may affect a total of 4,700 direct employees.” Continue Reading →

First Nations-owned company receives ‘up to $60M’ to connect Pikangikum to Ontario power grid (CBC News Thunder Bay – August 17, 2017)

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/thunder-bay/

Canada’s Minister of Indigenous and Northern Affairs says the federal government has pledged “up to $60 million,” for a long-awaited power project in Ontario’s far north.

Carolyn Bennett announced in Thunder Bay on Thursday that Wataynikaneyap Power — a transmission company owned by 22 First Nations in partnership with Fortis, a Canadian utility — will receive the money to connect Pikangikum to the province’s electricity grid.

The announcement, which sets the stage for work to be done to ensure a reliable flow of electricity to the community, is “thrilling,” Chief Dean Owen said. “The community will just be jubilant about it now, and now we can move forward,” he said. Construction on a 117 kilometre-long power line from Red Lake to Pikangikum is scheduled to begin in October, 2017, according to officials with Watay Power, with an estimated completion date of November, 2018. Continue Reading →

Africa’s Biggest Copper Mine Hit by Zambian Power Restrictions – by Matthew Hill and Taonga Clifford Mitimingi (Bloomberg News – August 15, 2017)

https://www.bloomberg.com/

Zambia is cutting power to mines including Africa’s biggest copper site, the Kansanshi pit owned by First Quantum Minerals Ltd., escalating a fight over tariffs.

“They have still got some significant amount of power for them to operate, but obviously their operations will not be at 100 percent because of the power restrictions,” Energy Minister David Mabumba told reporters Tuesday in Lusaka, the capital.

Glencore Plc has said it halted production at the Kitwe and Mufulira operations in Zambia’s Copperbelt province after the main electricity provider restricted supplies.

Copper miners in Zambia, Africa’s second-biggest producer of the metal, have been in a dispute with the country’s energy regulator since it raised tariffs by almost 30 percent in 2014. Continue Reading →

NEWS RELEASE: Over $2 Million Announced for Wataynikaneyap Transmission Project First Nations Training Program

http://www.wataypower.ca/

SIOUX LOOKOUT, ONTARIO — (Marketwired) — 07/26/17 — Wataynikaneyap Power is pleased to announce a major federal investment from the office of Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) in the amount of over $2 million in support of the Wataynikaneyap Power’s First Nations training program.

Today’s announcement now brings the total amount available for capacity building and training to over $4 million. The funding announcement will ensure the communities are prepared to provide an experienced and trained up labour force to be project-ready with transferable and accredited certification. The training project is fifty per cent funded by the federal contribution and fifty per cent by Wataynikaneyap Power.

“The vision of our leaders is to create opportunities and build capacity for our people today and into the future, through meaningful involvement and participation in the project,” says Margaret Kenequanash, Chair of Wataynikaneyap Power GP. “This investment enables us to take that step forward.” Continue Reading →

[Ontario] No business like coal business – by Lorrie Goldstein (Toronto Sun – July 21, 2017)

http://www.torontosun.com/

Premier Wynne back in black

Premier Kathleen Wynne’s government is back in black – meaning the coal business. Specifically, the use of coal to generate electricity, a practice it outlawed in Ontario on Nov. 23, 2015, after shutting down the last of the province’s coal-fired power plants in 2014.

As the Wynne Liberals proudly proclaimed back then: “Ontario passed legislation today to permanently ban coal-fired electricity generation in the province – a first in North America and a significant step in the fight against climate change.

“The Ending Coal for Cleaner Air Act prevents new and existing facilities from burning coal for the sole purpose of generating electricity. It sets maximum fines for anyone who violates the ban and enshrines the health and environmental benefits of making coal-fired electricity illegal in law … Continue Reading →

Ontario Hydro sticker shock all thanks to Liberals’ mismanagement – by Lorrie Goldstein (Toronto Sun – July 20, 2017)

http://www.torontosun.com/

As a new shocking Fraser Institute report on electricity pricing in Ontario reveals, real people suffer when governments are incompetent. The governments in this case are the Liberal ones headed first by Dalton McGuinty and now Kathleen Wynne, who have turned Ontario’s energy sector into a financial train wreck from which there will be no easy or painless escape for generations to come.

The numbers in the Fraser study, titled “Evaluating Electricity Price Growth,” are damning. Torontonians today pay $720 more annually for electricity than the average Canadian. Ontario electricity prices skyrocketed 71% between 2008 and 2016.

That’s more than double the Canadian average of 34%, 2.5 times more than the rise in household incomes, four times the inflation rate, and 4.5 times the growth rate of the economy. In 2015-16 alone, Ontario electricity prices increased 15%, 2.5 times the national average of 6%. Continue Reading →