While Newfoundlanders and Labradorians are enjoying their Canada Day celebrations next week, we should also get a warm and cosy feeling just knowing our electrical bills are going up — again.
As of July 1, Newfoundland Power will be raising bills by about two per cent to top up the rate stabilization account, which pays for oil used at the Holyrood thermal plant.
In a press release Tuesday, the utility was quick to point out that amounts to about $2 on a $100 monthly electricity bill.
They make it sound like it’s hardly even worth mentioning. True, $2 added to a bill isn’t much, but it’s the cumulative effect that gets us and consumers hardly even notice the extra money disappearing from their pockets.
For starters, many families in this province pay much more a month than the illustrated $100 monthly bill — which means their cost is going up by $4 or even $6 a month or more.
The money won’t be going to the utility or its shareholders, but that’s cold comfort when a higher power bill shows up. And these hikes just keep on coming year after year for one reason or another.
You would hardly think looking at what we pay to heat and light our homes that we live in the “energy warehouse” politicians keep bragging about.
It isn’t about to stop or slow either, even when Muskrat Falls starts pumping out electricity to bolster the provincial grid.
Politicians pushing the Labrador hydro project and those in charge of the Crown-owned energy company, Nalcor, have, for a long time, been warning that our electricity bills will continue to go up.
It’s a riddle that many of us regular folks just don’t get.
We have millions of kilowatts of electricity being produced here, we have more wind than we want, oil is being pumped from our offshore by the millions of barrels, and still we pay more than most Canadians to keep from freezing in the dark. What a system.