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Old Posted Jan 10, 2014, 8:18 PM
MalcolmTucker MalcolmTucker is offline
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Originally Posted by Allan83 View Post
I’m no expert in the area, but it seems to me that if we’re tied into the grid the seasonal impacts can be managed. For example, we can export power to the southern US in the summer when their air conditioners are blazing, and they can export power to us in the winter when we have less sunshine.
The cost of moving around that much power is huge. There is already lots of controversy over increasing Alberta's import capacity from around 7% of peak demand to around 20%. Lots of people fretting over exporting 'our' power from a market with relatively higher prices, to markets with relatively lower prices.

The fact remains, you are paying for two power plants, and the infrastructure to transmit between them, instead of one. So your plants have to be super cheap compared to a local reliable source like a hydro dam.

But to get back on topic, we aren't going to be a literal power house. We will have our massive skilled workforce that specializes in designing, building, and maintaining specialized plants and equipment. We will have a business community that knows how to derive value from those businesses.

There are plenty of businesses with pretty conservative risk models that are making 50 year investments in the province right now. Boom and bust in the oil sands is very difference than from when it was oil and gas juniors out wildcatting. Encana can very easily go from drilling 1800 wells a year for gas to less than 150, but you can't ramp up or down oil sands operations like that (save for issues like the financial crisis and hits to peripheral companies like the BA upgrader)
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