March 24, 2016
NDP legislation leads to cancelled power contracts, higher power bills
The NDP government’s changes to provincial carbon costs have resulted in yet another major power company cancelling its power purchase agreement, and businesses and families could be left to pick up the pieces, the Wildrose Official Opposition said today.
The NDP implemented a 66 per cent increase to the price of carbon under the Specified Gas Emitters Regulation in January 2016. Capital Power announced today that it is cancelling its power purchase agreement as a result of these recent changes. Enmax and TransCanada have also recently returned power purchasing agreements to the balancing pool.
The balancing pool can either continue to operate these coal units at a loss or it can pay out the cancelled contracts. Either way, Alberta businesses and families will be the ones picking up the tab.
“We’re seeing the fallout from the NDP’s ideological approach to our job-creating industries,” Wildrose Leader Brian Jean said. “The NDP continues to pursue a risky agenda without examining the consequences of their actions or consulting beforehand. Businesses and families will literally pay the price for these changes as they see their power bills go up.”
Companies are allowed to return these contracts due to Section 4.3(j) of the power purchasing agreement under grounds of a “Change in Law”.
Wildrose Shadow Electricity and Renewables Minister Don MacIntyre said the NDP has demonstrated a complete lack of competence on this file.
“The NDP’s changes in legislation provided these companies with an opportunity to exit these contracts,” MacIntyre said. “The power purchase agreements clearly state that any change in law provides the grounds for companies to cancel their agreements. The NDP should have known what the government’s liabilities were before moving ahead with any policy that adversely affects Alberta families.”