A little more on NL Hydro meeting here Wednesday evening. You will see a comment on the previous post, I know their name but was asked if I used the comment to not post the name.
I post the comment because it is very important as it runs parallel with what others are saying as well as to what Hydro is saying, but who still operating on a status quo basis.
I will add firstly that the larger unit in Nain is now a caterpillar, brought in after the fire a few years ago.
By operating with this business model (if you can call it that) Hydro are putting most of the communities on diesel power at risk for power outages and units coming off line unnecessarily. Hydro transmissions and operations know they operate in a very backwards kind of way by not using the best equipment available.
I don’t know where it all goes whacky in the system they have, is it in planning?, in another department? Does the fact that Hydro has to go to the PUB for permission to upgrade?, is it the public tendering act that dictates that inferior quality but cheaper units are spread throughout their diesel network
An example relayed to me is this; the cheaper engines are purchased, parts are way cheaper than a better quality engine so Hydro buys a whole lot of spare parts for the inevitable break down. Then lo n behold that engine has a catastrophic failure and has to be taken out permanently, so the stock pile of parts is rendered useless.
Penny wise and pound foolish seems to be the modus operandi of NL Hydro. Why someone has not picked up on this is troubling, huge amounts of money can be saved if changes to buying, planning and operations were made. It is also known that most of the diesel plants are running on inferior engines and in a band aid state, all the stop gape measures to keep these engine operational must be costing large amounts of $, one cant help but ask, why? Is there any reasonable rational to explain this behavior, or is there something a little on the sinister side going on here?
Goose Bay gets a lot of its power from Churchill Falls supplemented by the old diesel units on the Goose Bay air base. Lately the power from Churchill Falls has become unreliable and tenuous at best. Yet there is no plan to supply Goose Bay with power from the upcoming Muskrat Falls power line that will go very close to Happy Valley.
A couple of other towns are operating in a tenuous way similar to Nains. One of the operating units in Nain has gone way past its major overhaul time because of the issues here, when will it give up the ghost?
The meeting with Hydro was useful but not reassuring, when are the powers that be going to become more pro active and demand that Hydro change its operations to better meet the needs of the customers, and not least change to better meet the financial responsibility it should have towards the tax payers of the province.
It should have been known but pointed out any way by Hydro that the 20 diesel plant customers in the province are subsidized by the other customers to the tune of about 70%. Imagine what we would be paying if not.
If not for the obvious bad planning, blatant waste, incompetence and whatever else is going Hydro could reduce that 70% to closer to 50% I am sure.
This has gone beyond a *little more*, much more to say but will give it a rest.