Liberals’ electricity price break ‘perverse incentive,’ says environment commissioner

Rob Ferguson, Toronto Star

The 10 per cent break Premier Dalton McGuinty is giving Ontarians on their electricity bills was slammed Tuesday by Environmental Commissioner Gord Miller.

Aimed at taking the sting out of rising hydro bills with the Oct. 6 election approaching, the price break instead is a “perverse incentive” that undermines the push for more energy conservation, Miller said in his annual watchdog report to the government.

“The 10 per cent is an artificial subsidy on the price of electricity so it encourages consumers to use more,” he wrote.  It could wipe out one-third of planned conservation savings, Miller warned.

Related:  Gord Miller betting on a 200,000 % Increase on Carbon and Green Poverty – Gord Miller’s Energy Vision

15 thoughts on “Liberals’ electricity price break ‘perverse incentive,’ says environment commissioner

  1. Forward to the past… Back to teh Future! Some things never change.

    “The phrase ‘our new, happy life’ recurred several times. It had been a favourite of late with the Ministry of Plenty. Parsons, his attention caught by the trumpet call, sat listening with a sort of gaping solemnity, a sort of edified boredom. He could not follow the figures, but he was aware that they were in some way a cause for satisfaction. He had lugged out a huge and filthy pipe which was already half full of charred tobacco. With the tobacco ration at 100 grammes a week it was seldom possible to fill a pipe to the top. Winston was smoking a Victory Cigarette which he held carefully horizontal. The new ration did not start till tomorrow and he had only four cigarettes left. For the moment he had shut his ears to the remoter noises and was listening to the stuff that streamed out of the telescreen. It appeared that there had even been demonstrations to thank Big Brother for raising the chocolate ration to twenty grammes a week. And only yesterday, he reflected, it had been announced that the ration was to be reduced to twenty grammes a week. Was it possible that they could swallow that, after only twenty-four hours? Yes, they swallowed it. Parsons swallowed it easily, with the stupidity of an animal. The eyeless creature at the other table swallowed it fanatically, passionately, with a furious desire to track down, denounce, and vaporize anyone who should suggest that last week the ration had been thirty grammes. Syme, too-in some more complex way, involving doublethink, Syme swallowed it. Was he, then, alone in the possession of a memory? ”

    – George Orwell, 1984, part 1, chapter 5.

    Coming soon — to an electricity grid near you!

  2. Time to recycle the Environmental Commissioner. He seems to find the concept of ‘energy poverty’ irresistable.

  3. It is taking all my strength not to drop the f bomb…….ship of fools. Being in the manufactuting sector, and 30 percent of costs going to energy, it really is an unfair advantage competing with the rest of North America.

  4. I think Gord should look at other countries that have gone down this road.
    He may find that with all the green IE solar pannels wind turbines have not reduced thier carbon foot print and most that have been down the green road are now wishing they had not done so.
    I wish I could just do every thing in off peak time but I like most WORK for a living and can not just change my job to suit him or Mclier!!!!

  5. Think — “Little Ice Age” — all with soaring energy prices and inappropriate generation and transmission capacity. Not to mention electric cars that do not function well at all in cold weather.

    Thank you Gordon Miller.

    So onto the good stuff… Some breaking news with consequences for everybody who uses energy…

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/06/14/the-major-aas-solar-announcement-suns-fading-spots-signal-big-drop-in-solar-activity/

    Please note the mainstream organizations that are finally acknowledging what has been apparent for sometime. This come from the American Astronomical Society.

    “Currently, the sun is in the midst of the period designated as Cycle 24 and is ramping up toward the cycle’s period of maximum activity. However, the recent findings indicate that the activity in the next 11-year solar cycle, Cycle 25, could be greatly reduced. In fact, some scientists are questioning whether this drop in activity could lead to a second Maunder Minimum, which was a 70-year period from 1645 to 1715 when the sun showed virtually no sunspots.”

    Think — “Little Ice Age” — all with soaring energy prices and inappropriate generation and transmission capacity. Not to mention electric cars that do not function well at all in cold weather.

    Thank you Gordon Miller.

  6. Gord Miller is out of touch with reality.
    Our hydro bill has gone up about $200/month in the last year. We run a small business and have conserved as much as we can. We are also not in a position to pass this extra expense on.
    Our business employs myself and my husband full time. However, there are spin off jobs created. Our product gets picked up 3 X per week by a family owned enterprise. We have stuff delivered by various suppliers throughout the month. HOW long can we even afford to stay in business? We are seriously looking at relocating to our neighbours to the south. IS THAT what McGuinty, Gordy, et al want?!
    We are good, decent citizens. We pay our taxes. Stay out of trouble and try to be a benefit to society.
    This drivel from Gordy makes me crazy!

  7. As long as utilities such as Hydro One are guaranteed a rate of return (ie profit), then conservation is a zero sum game. Any reductions in usage are added to the distribution charges.

    In effect, when you turn out the light tonight, the energy you save is added to the cost of turning on the light tomorrow.

  8. I will bet that bowl is out for some treacle…

    Pale and haggard faces, lank and bony figures, boys of stunted growth, and others whose long and meagre legs would hardly bear their stooping bodies. Faces that told of young lives which from infancy had been one horrible endurance of cruelty and neglect. Little faces that should have been handsome, darkened with the scowl of sullen, dogged suffering. And yet, painful as the scene was, it had its grotesque features.

    Mrs. Squeers, wearing a beaver bonnet of some antiquity on the top of a nightcap, stood at the desk, presiding over an immense basin of brimstone and treacle. This compound she administered to each boy in succession, using an enormous wooden spoon for the purpose.

    “We purify the boys’ blood now and then, Nickleby,” said Squeers, when the operation was over.

    A meagre breakfast followed; and then Mr. Squeers made his way to his desk, and called up the first class.

    http://www.btinternet.com/~glynhughes/squashed/nicholasnickleby.htm

    I suspect that like Mr. Squeers, our very Own Gordon Miller will be recommending Treacle with Brimstone to cut the appetite for porridge.

  9. Benito McGuinty modeled his Energy Policy after Germany’s Energy Policy…T­his is not a good thing !!

    Germans pay second highest electricit­y prices in EU, Demark has the highest.

    http://www­.thelocal.­de/money/2­0100528-27­497.html

    Here are the figures from the article concerted to Canadian dollars.

    Demark pays 34 cents per kWh cdn

    Germany pays 30.6 cents per kWh cdn

    The EU pays on average 22 cents per kWh cdn

    In Ontario prior to McGuinty we paid less than 4 cents per kWh cdn.

    • And rightly so. Power rates need to be as low as possible for a healthly economy. Also, watch Germany once their nuke plants go off line. Their rates will soar and industry will flee.

  10. Anyone for Carbon Pricing is less than ..ethical..

  11. Gord Miller was on TVO’s The Agenda a while back. He stated on the air that hydro rates need to go up FIVE TIMES to force people to conserve. Soon as the Conservatives get in in Oct, Miller needs to be fired, pronto.

  12. He doesn’t seem to understand that conservation means less revenues for LDC’s which means that we still end up paying through the global adjustment. I guess this is O.K. because the general ratepayer will never directly see the increase in the rate payed only through delievery rates or other thinly disguised charge. And people like to complain that the ag. industry are always whining about subsidies, looks like the energy sector are even bigger leeches on the system to me.

  13. OK I was going to leave this for the future — but I cannot resist. At great cost and personal risk I have obtained the plans for the future of Ontario manufacturing — according to Gordon Miller.

    http://www.energybulletin.net/stories/2011-06-06/pedal-powered-farms-and-factories-forgotten-future-stationary-bicycle

    Romans referred to them as Galley Slaves — in the Ontario of the Future they are simple referred to as “The New Canadian Man” — tired, hungry and cold, but oh-so ecologically aware. The New Canadian Man would never pay for electricity he could generate himself.

    Forward to the Past!

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