Mr. Pallister, please suspend construction of Keeyask and Bipole III.
These projects are not "too far along" to suspend. The Limestone Generating Station construction began in 1976 with a cofferdam completed in 1978. Construction was resumed seven years later (after it had been suspended for a "slowing of demand.")
Sound familiar? The U.S. economic meltdown of 2009 and the prevalence of natural gas fracking, wind and solar power have rendered our power all but unwanted in the U.S. Thus, the Wuskwatim station, opened in 2012, operates at a loss, selling power to the U.S. at less than what Manitobans pay.
So why build the Keeyask Generating station? The PUB has already ordered construction on the Conawapa station to cease and desist because there is no use for the power it would generate. But the NDP forged ahead with Keeyask for political and ideological reasons.
Bipole III, ostensibly designed to carry all that extra power (that we don’t need, for non-existent export markets) is now claimed to provide Manitobans with energy security. A noble idea, but if that was the case, I’m surprised Hydro didn’t opt for the line to be installed on the bottom of Lake Winnipeg, as proposed by John Ryan in the Free Press. Surely that would have provided ultimate protection for the line. Instead, Hydro was ordered by the NDP to construct a line down the west side of the province instead of the east side. This decision was based solely to improve chances of being granted World Heritage Site status for the east-side boreal forest. This decision will result in the loss of obscene amounts of power through line loss and cost twice as much to build.
Most of the money spent on these projects has been for consultation, securing rights of way, design, surveying and engineering. If the future work is postponed, the already completed work will become useful if and when these projects are ever viable.
Until then, Mr. Pallister, you could become as revered for stopping construction as former Progressive Conservative premier Duff Roblin was for constructing.