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Recent comments

    December 10, 2012 - 07:07

    Hydro power is the cleanest,Most reliable,safest and most dependable source of power in the world, Some people talk of natural gas to run a power plant, as being the cheapest source of power, but like all gas & oil when the demand is up and supply is down so is the cost up, The upper Churchill power plant as run for years, there is no dirt, or smoke going into the air as it is from the Holy rood generating plant, which is listed as one of "The Top Ten Air Polluters in the WORLD" The Churchill River That Runs The Turbines Will Run Forever and A Day at no Cost, The Holyrood Generating Plant burns Millions of Gallons of oil each year, So much oil That it is listed as one of the top ten air poluters in the WORLD!

  • Frank
    December 09, 2012 - 17:57

    Once again it's the Punch and Judy show. Sorry I meant maurice and John!!

  • Jackie Logans
    December 09, 2012 - 12:53

    Well done, the government of Newfoundland & Labrador. The vision of Danny Williams continues to take shape. And giving the Nation of Quebec the middle finger is an added bonus!

  • jerome bennett
    December 08, 2012 - 20:06

    They say trust us,we know what we're doing.Trouble is the only totally honest men i know off were my father and Jesus Christ and they are both dead.

  • Fintip
    December 08, 2012 - 15:04

    Good article James, but I particularly like the headline - Muskrat Falls: Where they stand. If you decide to look back at Smallwood's Churchill Falls fiasco, you'll discover that the record of who knew what, who said what and who decided what is not all that clear. Aside from Hansard, Smith's book on Brinco, the Evening Telegram and the Daily News, there is not a real strong public record of how this thing evolved from an exciting, noble, promising concept into the corrupt, horrific, abject failure that we now know it to be. What we do know is that there are many disturbing similarities between the run-up to Churchill and to the present day Muskrat decision. First among them of course is that the impetus and core components of the deals came from singularly autocratic leaderships - premiers known for relying more on their own sense of infallibility than on the wisdom and dissenting opinions of others. Secondly, there is the enormous shroud of secrecy that hung over the decision-making process. The cone of silence was an accepted, pervasive feature of government in the Smallwood years but in today's legislatively protected access to information environment it required an entirely new draconian piece of legislation - Bill 29 - to abrogate those rights. Not only would this keep the media and the general public at bay, but it would even prevent the PUB from accessing the data it would need to review the Muskrat Falls proposal. Thirdly is that both governments employed the same sleazy tactics to stifle opposition and debate. Rather than address the substance of the criticisms or doubts aimed at their grandiose schemes, they instead attacked their critics. Together with their official and unofficial shills (the latter including their pseudonyms like John Smith) they publicly questioned the integrity, the motives, the intelligence and even the sanity of their detractors. Students of history will recognize this behaviour, of course, as a mainstay of dictatorships the world over. Adding to those similarities is the reliance in the present day Muskrat debate on the tried and proven fascist technique of rallying public support for an otherwise indefensible government stance by appealing to nationalism. It takes the form in this case of course of demonizing the province of Quebec. Quebec defrauded us on the Upper Churchill (which it did but with great help from our Smallwood, from Canada's PM Louis St. Laurent, and from a large group of carpetbagging financiers). Quebec continues to block our energy development aspirations (which it is with Ottawa's full support) and that Muskrat is therefore a means of giving Quebec the middle finger. And that too would be O.K. if it didn't require that we cut off our nose to spite our face in the bargain. It is my fervent hope that the blatant absence of viability of this project is something that will be offset and repaired by future events (i.e. that the price of oil goes higher - not lower - and hence that what now appears to be prohibitively expensive electrical power will become more affordable). If so, then the taxpayers and ratepayers of this province might be spared what otherwise could be catastrophic fiscal and economic fallout from this project. But if things go the other way - which is arguably what all economic indicators point to at the present time - then I trust there will be a reliable, thorough record of how we got to this precarious state. In practical terms, I hope someone is keeping track of who said and did what. We know of course that is not in the interests of this government to do. Indeed I suspect that those providing strategic inputs to this process will be encouraged before long to destroy any records that could embarrass government at some point down the road. There are literally thousands of emails, letters, calculations, press releases, media interviews, and countless comments in public forums like this one. Hopefully some group, such as MUN's Newfoundland Studies department, will make an effort to solicit and capture as much of that information as possible so that future generations can have a better understanding of what went wrong - a better understanding than presently exists of what went wrong on the Upper Churchill. Ironically it was WInston Churchill, for whom Hamilton Falls was re-named, who said that 'those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it".

  • grandfalls-windsor taxpayer
    December 08, 2012 - 13:56

    i like the title, muskrat falls: where they stand. if its anything like the abitibi-bowater screwup, then they don't stand very far and all those MHA'S responsible for that screwup should resign. what an embarrassment these politicians have become.

  • crista
    December 08, 2012 - 12:05


  • pat
    December 08, 2012 - 11:03

    we complain about our electric rates which is the best deal we get out of everything we buy ,but we happily pay the same for cable tv for which we get almost nothing where else are we going to get power if we dont develop[ lower churchill

  • Maurice E. Adams
    December 08, 2012 - 08:45

    $7.4 billion is the capital cost ($54,000 per household). Over the 50 year time frame, households will pay 5 times that amount ($250,000 per household). If they use more power and demand goes up --- they pay more. If they spend money to insulate their homes, turn down the heat, etc, and use less power, demand goes down --- they pay even more (because it is a 'take of pay' contract). And Nalcor's forecast demand (on which rates will be set) is 8 times more than what our average yearly increase in demand has been over the last 20 years......People need to wake up --- The federal loan "guarantee" gives Canada control of all of the shares of the 4 Nalcor subsidiary companies that will be set up to borrow the money and build the projects. There are about 20 default 'trigger events', any one of which could trigger 'default' and move ownership and/or control of all of the assets (Muskrat Falls generation facility, MF - Churchill Fall Transmission lines, and the Labrador-Island Transmission Link to the other Loan Guarantee "Parties" --- Canada, Nova Scotia or Emera.) ------ Wake up my fellow Newfoundlanders and Labradorians and put a stop to this profoundly unwise project.

  • John Smith
    December 08, 2012 - 08:18

    ...of course there will be cost overruns...every project has cost over runs...there is almost a billion dollar(750 million) built into the cost of the project for over runs...so we will have to burn through that first...then we will have over runs...

    • concerned
      December 08, 2012 - 14:47

      John. 10% contingency on this project (which I also believe includes their escalation) is a joke. PLease dont sell this as prudent and responsible. They should be carrying a 20% contingency in the rates they are telling people. Furthermore they should not be including the benefits of the loan guarantee in those rate projections as well. Tell people the truth. 300 $ per MWhr of power is where this is going to be when it is all done. If anyone doubt me, read the FLG. There are enough loop holes that you could drive 10 Mack Trucks through.

  • Two Questions
    December 08, 2012 - 08:00

    On Nov. 18, 2010 Premier Williams said the deal gives Nalcor 51 per cent ownership of transmission and Emera the remaining 49 per cent. What does this mean for all the residents of NL who are solely responsible for 100 per cent of the loan payments? Also, what has the PC Government done with the Abitibi hydroelectricity station that they “accidentally” expropriated?