Weighing the Costs of Bipole III

Posted on July 22nd, 2011

By Errol Black

Source: Brandon Sun (Unpublished)

Dear Editor;

Garland Laliberte and Karen Friesen’s letter of July 8, 2011 (Weighing the costs of Bipole III) is presumably intended to clarify the difference in the cost of running the Bipole III transmission line down the west side of Lake Winnipeg as opposed to the east side. If that was indeed their intention, their efforts have gone seriously awry.

The numbers of interest to citizens of Manitoba have been explained in detail most recently by John Ryan in a piece published by CCPA – Manitoba titled, “Bipole III: Winnipeg Free Press and the Conservative Campaign of Misinformation.” In brief, the relevant numbers are:

Cost of west side transmission line = $1,260,000 million

Cost of east side transmission line = $805,000 million

Difference in costs of construction = $455,000 million

Additional cost of line losses on west side = $232,000 million

Total difference in cost of west side transmission line = $687,000 million

Laliberte and Friesen suggest that most Manitobans don’t understand the numbers. This is an insult to most Manitobans. These numbers are clear and concise. Moreover, most Manitobans will recognize that the total difference in cost of $687,000 million is less than the $1, 000,000 number used by the coalition, and much, much less than the bogus numbers used by the Conservative Party of
Manitoba.

As well, most Manitobans understand that over the 60 year life of the project, the annual cost to Manitoba households of the difference in the total cost of the west side line will be approximately $6.00 per year – a little better than 1 and a half cents per day.

In conclusion, I would note that if there are any mischievous claims being made in this debate, they are being made by the people who deny that there is any potential loss of export sales associated with the east side route, and the people who dismiss out of hand the interests and aspirations of First Nations peoples leading the campaign to “Help make The Land That Gives Life A UNESCO Heritage
Site.”

Errol Black
726-4895