More Collusion in Alberta’s Electricity Industry?

Residents throughout Alberta were left without power earlier today on a rotating basis (CBC News, Global News, Edmonton Journal).

The Alberta Electric  System Operator (AESO), which ordered utility companies to shut off power on a rotating basis, suggested to Albertans that it was necessary for them to order the rolling blackouts because the hot weather had increased demands for electricity (air conditioning). No one in Alberta seems to have fallen for the AESO’s story, based on the Twitter record. Why wouldn’t Albertans believe the AESO?

1.  The majority of homes in Alberta do not have air conditioning.

2.  Air conditioning use by those homes that do have air conditioning would require less electricity than that required in the winter time by all homes to run their furnace motors, and we very seldom have blackouts in the middle of winter.

3.  Six power generating stations went off-line (a.k.a. they were shut down) Monday morning roughly the same time for various unexplained “technical reasons”. According to the AESO, 4 were coal-fired power plants (Sundance 3, Battle River 5, Keephills 1, Genesee 2) and 2 were gas-fired. Six power plants shut down at the same time is more than coincidence and highly suspicious.

4.  The resulting power taken off the grid amounted to only 200MW (as reported by Global News), which is less than 2% of the total generation capacity in the province.

The AESO, power generators, transmission industry, and Alberta Government have been losing a communications battle during the past 4 years wherein they have been trying to convince Albertans there will be brownouts and blackouts if we don’t build more generation and transmission capacity. Today’s rolling blackouts ordered by the AESO are extremely suspicious, as is the simultaneous shutting down of 6 power plants. Based on the Twitter record, most Albertans are convinced the whole exercise was concocted by the AESO, coal-fired power generators, transmission industry and Alberta Government to scare Albertans into believing we need more electricity generation and transmission capacity (a.k.a. more high voltage transmission lines).

Well…Albertans didn’t fall for it. Shame on the AESO and everyone else involved with these shenanigans.

~ by RETA on July 9, 2012.

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