The province's Consumer Advocate has given his blessing to the proposed Muskrat Falls hydro-electric and transmission project.
Tom Johnson filed his submission to the Public Utilities Board today.
Johnson has reached the conclusion that project is the least cost option of the two options being explored. He does indicate that the project has it's risks but he feels they can be mitigated.
I have known Tom since our university day's. He is a sharp lawyer with a keen, analytical mind , and I respect his opinion.
Like the PUB, the Consumer Advocate only reviewed the same two options that Manitoba Hydro International did. I can not help but feel the result was predetermined by the narrow, one or the other, parameters that have been provided.
I still think that there are issues with Nalcor's original assumptions that just do not hold up,
I am not sold on the EMERA link. There is no market for exports. There is, and will be, a need for a lot of industrial power in Labrador. The projections for demand in the province may be inflated and I am still not convinced that Natural Gas has been given a fair review considering most of the the data referenced by NALCOR is a nearly a decade old. Let's face it, the energy equation has changed drastically since this project was announced two years ago?
However, the Consumer Advocate's endorsement of the project will certainly speed up this freight train as it rushes to gate three.
I look forward to taking the time over the weekend to give Mr. Johnson's submission a thorough reading. I remain to be convinced, but I have an open mind.