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alkizmo

join:2007-06-25
Pierrefonds, QC
kudos:1

Not enough electricity demand? Increase prices!

We've all know the rethorics regarding the price of electricity: The demand is too high, so prices go up.

Well, it was announced that Hydro Quebec (main POCO of Quebec) has overestimated the future demand for electricity and now they will face a surplus of electricity over the next 8 years.
Consumers should expect a 5% increase over the new few years because of that.

Unfortunately I can't find an english article on the subject.

Ridiculous EH?

Sidebar: I get it, they invested in increasing the production capacity of the infrastructure and expected to cover the costs by billing on the consumption. Now that consumption won't be as much as they expected so they gotta bill higher per kW. Still, this is ironic considering we were pushed to be energy efficient just like the rest of the world. Good thing I heat with NG.



CylonRed
Premium,MVM
join:2000-07-06
Bloom County

That is the double edged sword of electricity... And many other utilities that take a lot of capital expenditures.
--
Brian

"It drops into your stomach like a Abrams's tank.... driven by Rosanne Barr..." A. Bourdain


telco_mtl

join:2012-01-06
reply to alkizmo

said by alkizmo:

We've all know the rethorics regarding the price of electricity: The demand is too high, so prices go up.

Well, it was announced that Hydro Quebec (main POCO of Quebec) has overestimated the future demand for electricity and now they will face a surplus of electricity over the next 8 years.
Consumers should expect a 5% increase over the new few years because of that.

Unfortunately I can't find an english article on the subject.

Ridiculous EH?

Sidebar: I get it, they invested in increasing the production capacity of the infrastructure and expected to cover the costs by billing on the consumption. Now that consumption won't be as much as they expected so they gotta bill higher per kW. Still, this is ironic considering we were pushed to be energy efficient just like the rest of the world. Good thing I heat with NG.

alkizmo, i know how you feel i have the dual energy deal with oil as my other source of heat. If i was 100% electric baseboards i would be quite worried. What i find funny is 25 years ago HQ was giving grants to people to get rid of their combustion furnaces and go electric baseboard, then in the 90s it was all about conservation and getting people who still had combustion appliances to put in heat pumps. At the time they gave a pretty decent off peak rate, but now its about a penny per kw/h cheaper than the regular rate... BUT the peak rate is more than 3 times the regular rate.

guppy_fish
Premium
join:2003-12-09
Lakeland, FL
kudos:1
reply to alkizmo

In your country, costs are almost all fixed asset and personnel, you don't have fuel costs as your primarily Hydro ( 92% ), so its basic math. Divide the these costs by the number of kwh sold. Less sold means each unit costs more, no way around it



alkizmo

join:2007-06-25
Pierrefonds, QC
kudos:1

said by guppy_fish:

In your country, costs are almost all fixed asset and personnel, you don't have fuel costs as your primarily Hydro ( 92% ), so its basic math. Divide the these costs by the number of kwh sold. Less sold means each unit costs more, no way around it

I know that, I did explain it in my original post (read the sidebar).

I'm not really complaining, the point of this thread is to show the irony and how upside down things are over here. We have excess power instead of excess demand. We pay more per kW instead of them reducing the price of kW to get us to consume some more.

What they want us to do is pay extra per kW while not letting us use those excess kW. I'd rather pay +5% of my usual power bill and use +5% my usual consumption (Set the AC to lower temps, set the electric heating higher) than pay +5% to use +0%.

pandora
Premium
join:2001-06-01
Outland
kudos:2
Reviews:
·ooma
·Google Voice
·Comcast
·Future Nine Corp..

There is no way to win with government protected monopolies. Use too much, pay more, don't use enough, pay more, use the same, pay more.
--
"If you put the federal government in charge of the Sahara Desert, in 5 years there'd be a shortage of sand." - Milton Friedman"


HarryH3
Premium
join:2005-02-21
kudos:3

1 recommendation

reply to alkizmo

It's just yet another example of the Golden Rule: "He who has the gold, makes the rules."


guppy_fish
Premium
join:2003-12-09
Lakeland, FL
kudos:1
reply to alkizmo

You always have the option of building your own power plant ( think solar grid-tie for example ) if you feel the prices being offered are unreasonable


H_T_R_N
Premium
join:2011-12-06
Valencia, PA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·voip.ms

said by guppy_fish:

You always have the option of building your own power plant ( think solar grid-tie for example ) if you feel the prices being offered are unreasonable

Way to miss the entire point of the post.

Bob4
Account deleted

join:2012-07-22
New Jersey
reply to alkizmo

1. Maybe that's why the government shouldn't own major electric utilities.

2. Your rates are already lower than everyone else's, so don't complain.



ropeguru
Premium
join:2001-01-25
Mechanicsville, VA
reply to alkizmo

Same thing happened in Florida with water bills. After they implemented permanant water restrictions, everyone complied so well that the utility wasn't making enough money so they raised the rates.



jack b
Gone Fishing
Premium,MVM
join:2000-09-08
Cape Cod
kudos:1
reply to alkizmo

That surplus wouldn't exist if certain tree huggers on both sides of the border didn't oppose construction of transmission grid interconnects to the southern axis, who's inhabitants are more than willing to drink the Canadian Hydro!
--
~Help Find a Cure for Cancer~
~Proud Member of Team Discovery ~



alkizmo

join:2007-06-25
Pierrefonds, QC
kudos:1

Bunch of dendrophiliacs.

They don't want trees to be cut to make way for the tramission grids, yet the result is those south of the border will be using more electricity produced by burning fuel (whichever fuel). The electricity from QC is all hydroelectric.


Bob4
Account deleted

join:2012-07-22
New Jersey

Champlain Hudson Power Express - »www.chpexpress.com

Note that Hydro-Quebec has been skeptical of the project and reluctant to spend the $500 million for their part of the project.



LazMan
Premium
join:2003-03-26
canada
reply to alkizmo

This isn't any great surprise - there are times of the year when HQ has had to PAY other utilities (particuarlly ConEd in NY) to take their power...

Problem with Hydro generation is it's tough to ramp up and down quickly with demand... So when you've got a surplus of power, you have to do something with it.

I hate to say it, but 5% isn't bad, doubly so, since you're starting with the one of (if not the lowest) price in North America.... Doesn't make it sting less, other then the knowledge it could be worse!


Bob4
Account deleted

join:2012-07-22
New Jersey
Reviews:
·Optimum Online

1 recommendation

reply to alkizmo

Click for full size
downloadcarte_reseau.pdf 1,012,344 bytes
Attached is Hydro-Quebec's transmission network map.

Take a free tour! "Stupefaction guaranteed!"
»www.hydroquebec.com/visit/baie-j···ssa.html
»www.hydroquebec.com/visit/baie-j···e-1.html

Note that the access road is 400 miles long, there are no towns along the way, and there's only one gas station. (And to get to the access road, it's 500 miles from Montreal. So you're talking about an 1800 mile round-trip for the free tour.)

»jamesbayroad.com/jbr/index.html


Pacrat
Old and Cranky
Premium,MVM
join:2001-03-10
Cortland, OH
kudos:2
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable
reply to alkizmo

Reminds me of the "great natural gas shortage" of the early 80's. The TV ads were just full of ways to conserve natural gas... lower thermostat, lower water heater temps, night-time setbacks, etc. So we did... and we conserved so much here in NE Ohio that East Ohio Gas Co. petitioned the Public Utilities Commission for an emergency rate increase. They were selling less natural gas, and making less money, so in order to bolster their stock prices, they asked for, and received an immediate rate increase. Bottom line... we all conserved and it ended up costing us more money.
--
Keep your eye on the ball, your shoulder to the wheel, your nose to the grindstone, and your ear to the ground. Now, try to work in that position!!!



alkizmo

join:2007-06-25
Pierrefonds, QC
kudos:1

Eh, just to be an ass: It might remind you of that, but it isn't similar at all. They probably DID have a shortage, but with the pre-existing rates and reduced consumption, they couldn't cover their fixed costs. In the hydro quebec case, they overshot their pre-emptive infrastructure investments thinking we'd want more



hm

@videotron.ca
reply to alkizmo

That's what they did in Ontario. So no surprise.

In addition to raising the Ontario rates, somewhere around 3x in a year, Ontario got to pay more during "peak hours" and have those meters installed to measure "peak hours".

So when you add it all up, Ontario got 4 nice price increases in a year.

So far the energy board in Quebec has shot down price increases, and as a matter of fact *lowered* prices by a few cents when Hydro Quebec went to them for a price increase due to the extra money they are making in the export business to Ontario and to the New England States.

So will it go up? Hard to say. Press has been reporting the pass two years that it will and instead it went down the past 2 years. So yeah, maybe it's due for an increase now. Depends on their exports of power. But I doubt they will get the full blown amount they are asking for. Especially if they move into the Maritimes.

What is more pressing is that the energy board approved that the new wireless meters be installed. You know what that means, and what is coming down the road... Peak time usage. It wasn't allowed in this first pass, but the meters will now go in.

People have a choice now, per the Quebec energy board:
1. Pay 200$ (one time fee to register a non-wireless meter) + something like 17$ additional per month (forget the actual number but about that) to pay for a meter reading to come to your house.

or

2. Install the new wireless meter at no cost.

I'll be one of the people holding out and paying the "fine" to stay as I am till I see how they plan on conning people over the next few years. That's worth 17$ to me (plus one time 200$ fee). I do not want to end up being a sucker on TOU (time of day usage) since I have an in-ground pool going and someone in the house w/ a heart problem that requires AC going non-stop in summer. I would be stupid to pay TOU prices. But I haven't worked it out since no TOU rates are in place... YET!

So, alkizmo, are you going to get the new wireless meter? Requires you to put it in writing with your 200$ cheque to Hydro-Quebec.

Also, I think you failed to realize that our prices have dropped the past few years instead of increasing due to Hydro-Quebec's Power exporting business. Energy board said All Quebecers must reap the rewards of this. Hydro Quebec pop'd an artery in their head I think when this happened.

Hydro Quebec to Energy Board: We need a 10% increase

Energy Board to Hydro Quebec: Indeed, lower rates by 3% this year and next.

Think you missed that part...

With warmer winters being had in Ontario and some New England states, less energy being consumed, thus the excess. But don't be fooled. Hydro Quebec has some of the best clauses on earth to milk the Americans and Ontarians.

The Excess energy exported is sold back to Hydro Quebec and a fraction of a penny than what it is sold for. So that excess power is already paid for. Energy Board knows this. And if the states and Ontario don't buy power on contract pricing, then they pay 10x the cost if they need more. So they all take more than is required or they (American and Ontario power resellers) will be forced to increase rates on American and Ontario consumers.

Win-Win.

Don't let the press hype get to you... yet. I'd be more concerned with the wireless meters that are going to be installed soon.



hm

@videotron.ca
reply to alkizmo

Click for full size
Rates. N.A.
Source:
»www.hydroquebec.com/publications···2_en.pdf


Joey1973

@verizon.net

MAJOR NORTH AMERICAN CITIES (with rates higher than ours)



hm

@videotron.ca

Click for full size
More rates
said by Joey1973 :

MAJOR NORTH AMERICAN CITIES (with rates higher than ours)

Maybe you're right?

Here is a rate comparison from another power company, based on monthly residential bills and power consumption:

»www.bchydro.com/etc/medialib/int···2011.pdf

I can't believe the rate differences. Anyone here in Cali using PG&E can confirm? Or Consolidated Edison in NY?

alkizmo, if people here (in Qc) got electric bills like what our next door neighbours in Ontario got, it would hit the fan.

But an average of 100$ more per month is the cash-grab wireless meters and TOU gave the people of Ontario because it's the Green and environmentally friendly thing to do, ay?

Telling you, more to fear from the wireless meter set to start v soon than a 5% rate increase which may not happen.

I wouldn't mind seeing the costs of all the New England states (Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut) and more of NY, which Hydro Quebec supplies. A quick look only shows Boston.

Did only a quick search for a better price comparison of monthly bills across N.A. but didn't find anything. I'll leave that for Joey1973.

I can now understand why I have seen some topics here in the forum about people stealing (or trying to steal) electricity. If my rates were gave me 600$ bills per month instead of a hundred-something I think I would steal it too!

telco_mtl

join:2012-01-06
reply to guppy_fish

said by guppy_fish:

You always have the option of building your own power plant ( think solar grid-tie for example ) if you feel the prices being offered are unreasonable

you really cant compete with just over a nickel a kw/h though!

Bob4
Account deleted

join:2012-07-22
New Jersey
Reviews:
·Optimum Online
reply to guppy_fish

said by guppy_fish:

You always have the option of building your own power plant ( think solar grid-tie for example ) if you feel the prices being offered are unreasonable


East Amwell man lives off the grid in solar-powered home
»www.nj.com/mercer/index.ssf/2013···the.html
quote:
It took DiPirro almost seven years to build his 2,700-square-foot home in the hills near Sourland Mountain in Hunterdon County, where he moved in 2011. Construction lagged while DiPirro sought the equipment to power his sustainable vision, he said, but he eventually found light fixtures, a water pump and a refrigerator that could be powered directly by the 16 solar panels in his backyard.

He purchased a LED television that he said uses 30 watts of power, far less than an LCD or plasma television.

“It’s rewarding to live like this, but it’s not extreme in the sense of being deprived of modern-day amenities,” DiPirro said. “Anytime people build or remodel, I think they should do this.”

DiPirro said he worked sustainable design into every aspect of the home, from its east-west orientation to its thick insulation and high windows.

Without a traditional heating and cooling system, most of the heat in DiPirro’s home comes through those windows and up from the floor, a swath of black tile over lightweight concrete that absorbs the sun during the day.


cdru
Go Colts
Premium,MVM
join:2003-05-14
Fort Wayne, IN
kudos:7
reply to telco_mtl

said by telco_mtl:

you really cant compete with just over a nickel a kw/h though!

I think you mean .0525 per kw/h now. Totally changes the picture.


hm

@videotron.ca
reply to alkizmo

said by alkizmo:

We have excess power instead of excess demand. We pay more per kW instead of them reducing the price of kW to get us to consume some more.

Well the second sentence isn't true. Rates did drop, as stated up above. And a lot of that excess power have been paid for not once, but twice (unused contracted power from the states and Ontario).

What is interesting, however, is Hydro-Quebec and the Gov of Vermont have kick-started R&D last year on how to use and bring Hydro-Quebec power to every home as a fueling station for the new all electric cars they are also R&D'ing and should be out within the next 5-7 years.

Demand will then peak again. The more it peaks for export, the better off we are in terms of monthly bills (here in QC).

Don't know what happens when someone from QC or Vermont travels in their all electric car to a place supplied by PG&E LOL better to sell the car and go gas in that part of N.A. with those insane prices.

telco_mtl

join:2012-01-06
reply to cdru

we are terrible wasters of electricity in quebec, just with our lighting if you look at the Halo of light comming off montreal on satellite photos you get an idea of how unfocused out lighting is. The transport ministry has been removing lamp standards on highways like crazy of late to put in more high mast lighting, not only do they light the highway but all the neighborhoods around.

I look in the states at some of the conservation things put in place and im impressed. In cleveland at jacobs field the minute the last out is called on come the sodium lights and off go the halide lights in the ballpark, little things like that go a long way.


Bob4
Account deleted

join:2012-07-22
New Jersey
Reviews:
·Optimum Online
reply to hm

said by hm :

Demand will then peak again. The more it peaks for export, the better off we are in terms of monthly bills (here in QC).

What happens when Hydro-Quebec starts diverting electricity to Vermont because they're willing to pay more than you are?

Be careful what you wish for...


hm

@videotron.ca
reply to hm

said by hm :

I can't believe the rate differences. Anyone here in Cali using PG&E can confirm?

I think I can answer my own question:
»Our PG&E Bill averages $600-$800 per month, sometimes more...

AMAZING!!

Another thing I never understood in this forum is the people who will go out and spend 30 or 40$ on a stupid LED light bulb. I always said to myself these people have more money than brains.

But when someone gets a monthly 600 to 800$ electric bill, WOW! F'N WOW! what costs us 140$ costs them 600$! I can understand now why they want to spend 40$ to save a lousy few watts that would cost us a whole quarter (25 cents) here. No wonder people here don't buy them. Makes no sense.

Don't think you are going to find much sympathy in this American forum for the 5% increase you may or may not get alkizmo (other than from me) heh


hm

@videotron.ca
reply to telco_mtl

said by telco_mtl:

we are terrible wasters of electricity in quebec,

Yes, we are. But it's also a use it or pay more for it situation as stated by the OP. It's there and not going anywhere anytime soon. It's also why LEDS barely exist as a market and why T-12's are in full stock everywhere. Ever look at the cost versus money saved for something like T-5 lights or LED's?

For someone on PG&E's grid, yeah sure, it will likely save you money. In Quebec you won't see a dime of that money back for a long, long time. Just not worth it. So not much "green washing" goes on here, unless there is a income tax incentive like the last time, or if Hydro Quebec wants to pay 50% of your "green" light bulbs (if they still do that).

No different than with water. I never heard of water meters or sewer meters till I left Quebec. But from what I read, that is coming soon to the Montreal area (starts this year I think) to raise tax revenue for the city. Pretty sure it will sprawl out to the rest of Quebec in a few years. Quebec also has the greatest amount of backyard pools I think in all of N.A. and our pool season is only like 3 months.

Yup, Quebeckers have a name as being resource wasters. But we have it and it's a use or lose situation. However, my city now charges me 75$ more per year for my 200,000 litre (or is it 200K-gal? I forget) pool on my taxes. 0.000375-cents per litre. Damn thieves. But top-ups are free. I would hate to think what it would cost with a water meter.

Electric wise, the pool pump costs me around 300 or so per season leaving the pump run ~12-hrs a day i believe (opening and closing I let it run 24-hrs for about a week).

In PG&E land, that would be 1500$ (or 500$ EXTRA per month on your 600-800$ bill). Insane.

So in Quebec it's affordable. So there are reasons why we are the great wasters of N.A.

Use it or lose it.