Nalcor loses Quebec electricity court challenge

James McLeod
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The Quebec courts have chosen not to get involved in a spat between Nalcor and the province over the right to transmit electricity to the U.S.

On Friday afternoon, Nalcor said that the Quebec Superior Court dismissed a request for a judicial review of the Quebec energy regulator, the Régie de l’énergie.

The sparring has been going on since 2006 when the government started asking Quebec for the right to transmit electricity through the Hydro-Québec grid.

The Newfoundland and Labrador government has argued that American Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) rules require Quebec to provide open access to Newfoundland and Labrador as part of tariff rules.

When the Régie turned Nalcor down, the province went to the Quebec courts asking for a judicial review.

“A judicial review is not an appeal; it is a review of the Régie’s decisions based on Hydro’s submission that the decisions contained significant errors of law,” the Nalcor news release said Friday. “Hydro is reviewing the decision and cannot provide further comment at this time.”

This court decision does not affect the province’s current plan to develop Muskrat Falls.

It is also separate from the province’s good faith court case which is in the Quebec courts, and it is separate from the court application Hydro-Québec filed last which appears to be aimed at the Muskrat Falls project.

Nalcor said it won’t comment further on the court ruling until it’s had time to review it.

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Organizations: Hydro-Québec, Quebec Superior Court, American Federal Energy Regulatory Commission FERC

Geographic location: Quebec, Newfoundland and Labrador, Muskrat Falls

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Recent comments

  • Prescient
    August 10, 2013 - 12:36

    Someone please correct me if I am wrong, but NL Hydro / CFLCo / Nalcor has lost ever court case in which it has ever been involved when HQ was on the other side. Regardless of whether the court was in Quebec or Ottawa, the result has always been the same - HQ wins and NL loses. We have lost the cases and the money we spent launching them. This "Regie" case does not relate to the current MF project, but NLers should reflect on our dismal record in the courts against HQ which recently launched an action against Nalcor regarding Nalcor's interpretation of the extension agreement to the 1969 Churchill Falls Power Contract. Nalcor is likely to lose that case as well. Nalcor refuses to acknowledge that a HQ victory in the new case would have an impact on MFs. Do not believe Nalcor. Research this yourself. Read Nalcor's own submissions to the PUB when the PUB studied the Water Management Agreement a few years ago. Controlling when the Upper Churchill generates electricity impacts downstream water flow which, obviously, impacts MF power generation.