Low Water Has Had a Negative Impact on Crown Hydroelectric Utilities
Manitoba Hydro and Hydro Quebec have seen their export revenues curtailed due to low water conditions thsi year.
Manitoba Hydro and Hydro Quebec have seen their export revenues curtailed due to low water conditions thsi year.
ICBC's resultsf for the first six months of 2023/24 were encouraging, as reviewed in the attached commentary.
Serious drought effects have had a profound effect on BC Hydro's first half financial results.
Recently, Premier Eby said that the 2024/25 budget may include a carbon tax rebate funded through BC Hydro. This paper has a closer look.
This paper reviews the possible use of some of the Canadian Entitlement under the Columbia River Treaty to address some of the growing demand for clean electricity.
This paper reviews comeof the cost and other implications if BC Hydro purchases electricity powered by wind. See also https://biv.com/article/2023/11/calculating-cost-new-power-generation-bc
This is the first in-depth look at ICBC's Optional claims information.
The Alberta government replaced the auto insurance rate freeze with a cap pending a review of options to reduce longer-term costs.
A drier and warmer future poses significant risk for BC Hydro's generating capacity to meet future needs with clean and affordable electricity.
On 30 Septemebr 2023, Vughn Palmer of the Vancouver Sun commented on the firing of the chair of the BC Utilities Commission: https://vancouversun.com/opinion/columnists/vaughn-palmer-bc-utilities-commission-firing-shows-eby-ready-to-interfere-to-achieve-ndp-goals
Occasional Paper No. 92 provides the key multiyear financial and operational data to 2022.23.
Recent comments by the IBC may signal how the Alberta government will restructure its auto insurance liability model. See also https://www.canadianunderwriter.ca/legal/whats-contributing-to-rising-auto-premiums-in-alberta-1004238314/
Recent announcements of large planned green hydrogen production plants near Prince George depend on hydroelectricity that BC Hydro does not have. See also https://biv.com/article/2023/09/mines-power-fossil-fuels-major-balancing-act-energy-minister
Occasional Paper No, 91 provides a five-year review of certain BC Hydro key indicators and is intended for reference purposes.
BC Hydro achieved a strong financial performance in 2022/23, led by majpr gains in Trade income and lower energy costs.
This paper has a more detailed review of ICBC's 2022/23 financial results by major program. Of note is the rise in materail damage costs and tort injury pressures.
This report provides a summary at the corporate level of the 2022/23 financail results.
This report shows ICBC claims information to 31 March 2023, provided through the FOI process.
Some commentors and environmental advocates have suggested that BC has almost achieved the target of a clean electrical grid. The attached paper suggests that meeting future demand for a clean power grid will be difficult and expensive.
Ths paper examins certain highlights of the MPI annual report.
Affordable auto insurance rates continues to be a pressing matter for the Alberta government. This paper reviews some recent developments.
BC Hydro has advanced the timeline to acquire new clean electricity. This paper has a closer look and the possible implicatons.
New accounting rules that took effect on April 1, 2023, will aggregrate revenue and expenditure information making analysis much more difficult.
The Manitoba government has joined the trend of provincial governments to politicize the pricing of auto insurance rates. Four examples are presented.
Occasional Paper No. 88 is the most recent compilation of financail and operating statistics to 2021/22.
ICBC has forecast significant net income over the next two years using inflated investment income.
Ontario continues to experience high auto insurance premiums. A new initiative could see lower rates but result in much less protedtion.
For many years BC governments have required ICBC policyholders to subsidize a variesty of governmet programs or policies, as detailed in the Commentary.
This paper reviews the BCUC decision to advance the rate request review for the next two years, and discusses ICBC's distorted approach to forecasting the investment income.
Recent comments by Auditor General Michael Pickup suggest that the government cannot continue to freely issue directives to the BC Utilites Commission respecting BC Hydro's finances.
This Commentary summarizes the status of the main challenges to the hybrid tort and no-fault liability model.
Will the lack of clean electricity to meet the government's net zero target doom the new LNG projects that are queing for approval?
BC Hydro reported a strong nine months primarily due to the effect of interest rate increases nd a jump in Trade income.
This paper reviews ICBC's latest service plan forecast for 2022/23, and its third quarter financial summary.
Hydro Quebec reported record sales and profits in calendar year 2022, mainly driven by high export prices and a cold winter.
The cost of auto insurance has again become an election issue in Alberta. This paper provides context for the government decision to freeze fates for the balance of 2023.
This paper examins the early data available to asses how well the change to the no-fault model has achieved the government's objectives.
Can ICBC afford the two-year rate freeze ordered by the government? This paper reviews its new rate request to the Utilities Commission and finds it fundamentally flawed because ICBC management failed to address this important question.
Nelson Bennett's 28 December 2022 article in Business in Vancouver.
As a result of the change to a no-fault model ICBC rates comare favourably with those with hybrid-tort models, but are higer than Saskatchewan and Manitoba. See also Derrick Penner Vancouver Sun December 14, 2022.
By ordering the Utilities Commission to approve BC Hydro’s new rebate regulatory account the government continues to substitute political imperatives for the economic-based rate setting oversight provided by the once independent regulator.
Media interviews to 14 Decemder 2022.
This paper raises some questions about ICBC's forecast operating loss based on the second quarter financial summary.
Finance Minister Selina Robinson mixed fiscal years and conflated taxpayers and ratepayers in explaining the funding of new measures.
Premier Eby announced a credit/rebate but no total cost or funding plan was make public. This paper provides an estimate, and discusses two funding approaches.
In a recent decision the Manitoba Court of Appeal declined to hear an appeal by the MPI public auto insurer concerning a decision by its refulator. Perhaps Manitoba will adopt the more directive approach used by the government in this province?
The report highlights the weaknesses in planning, project management and accountability. There are many parrallels to the Site C project.
Occasional Paper No. 85 provides six years of various ICBC financial and operational data to fiscal yrar 2021/22.
A five-year statistical summary of BC Hydro's finances.
BC Hydro no longer reports its Domestic electricity surplus or deficit, but it is possble to determine the annual totals from the service data in its annual reports. The over capacity in generation has costs for ratepayers.
Occasional Paper 83 summarizes the key aspects of BC Hydro's 2021/22 annual report, which was released some three weeks ago.
This report has a closer look at ICBC's 2021/22 financial results at the program level compared to the results of the prior year.
FY 2021/22 was historic for our public auto insurer, both for the shift to no-fault and the historic combined operating profit.
National public sector accountig rules require that profits or losses from self-supporting Crown corporations be caunted as government revenue, even if no cash is transferred. The net income from BC Hydro and ICBC is not transferred and distorts the true cash picture of the government's finances.
BC Hydro has extended the IPP contract for 4.5 years to maintain grid reliability.
Three recent media comments or articles concerning the attempt to gain public financial support for a bid to host the 2030 Winter Olympics. See also
A new directive reinforces the government's unwillingness to fulfill its 2018 promise to enhance the independence of the BC Utilities Commission regardsin BC Hydro's finances and rates.
This Commentary discusses the new Royal BC Museum in light of Dr. Robin Fisher's distinction between history and historical memory. Related see
A new report shows that private Canadian Property and Casualty insurers make record profits in 2021. This paper has a closer look.
The Ontario NDP has promised a major reduction in auto insurance as part of its election platform. This paper has a closer look.
A commentary of the proposed Anti-Racism Data Act reviews a number of issues, including the presumption of systemic racism in provincial public bodies.
Occasional Paper 82 provides a more detailed analysis of ICBC financial rebound during the past two years.
WorkSafe BC claim statistics
Occasional Paper No. 81 provides a multi-year compilation of actual key financial and operating measures to 2020/21.
A recent Globe and Mail editorial cantained factual errors about the recently announced insurance rebates in BC and Saskatchewan. Taxpayers are not subsidizing drivers in these provinces.
The decision to proceed with a rebate signifies the adoption of more realistic capital reserve targets. Linking the rebate to offsetting high fuel costs has clouded a positive picture.
A new cabinet order negates the previous commitment to restore full independence to the BC Utilities Commission to regulate BC Hydro. Will the auditor general again qualify the government's financial statements?
President Jimenez says rebuilding the capital reserve will take time, but the latest forecast suggests that ICBC has sufficient capital to provide a rebate now.
ICBC has forecast a record profit of $1.9 billion for the current year. This Commentary reviews the forecast and the Q3 report.
National accounting standards require that the net income of ICBC and BC Hydro be reported as government revenue. As no actual cash is transferred from thes two Crowns this distorts understates the size of the government's planned operating deficits for the current and next three years.
Each year Basic policyholders contribute close to $30 million to fund traffic enforcement through additional police resources and through intersection radar cameras. This paper has a closer look.
The Ontario government may eliminate the $120 vehicle registration fee in the run-up to the June election resulting in a taxpayer subsidy to drivers.
In a recent decision the BC Utilities Commission gave notice that it will regulate BC Hydro rates using an incentive sytem. This despite the warnings of BC Hydro and most of the consumer groups that such a system would not be effective for the Crown utility, and would reduce public accountability.
Starting January 1, 2022, the basoc mandatory auto insurance for vehicle damage claims converted to a n-fault model. Injury claims remain in the hybrid tort model, where pain and suffering awards for minor claims are capped.
New information from BC Hydro shows the significant increase in operating expenditures as Site C becomes operational. A significant increase in Domestic sales reduces the pressure on rates caused by the $16 billion project. See also https://biv.com/article/2022/01/site-c-dam-require-87-rate-hike-over-2-years-analyst
In light of anticipated higher interest rates BC Hydro has re-instituted its hedging program. Better luck this time?
Occasional Paper No. 79 refreshes previous financial and service measures wih the actuals to 2020/21.
The sponsors of two reports have claimed that the reports justify claims of systemic racism, but is this true?
After six months BC Hydro's finances show improvements from the prior year, partly due to improved economic activity.
ICBC's minimalist half-yer summary report shows improved financial health, but lack of service measue data make detailed analysis impossible.
Occasional Paper No.78 takes a closer look at the growth of provincial GHG emisssions in the context of other larger provinces, population growth and economic growth.
This commentary summarizes the key issues in the BC Utilities Commission's recent decision.
The government's plan to restrict old growth logging could have a significant effect on BC Hydro's sales and rates.
The public auto insurers in Saskatchewan and Manitoba have reported claims costs tracking below the budget forecasts due to the continuing effects of the measures to supress the pandemic. This may result in more rebates to policyholders.
New reports by Ontario's Financial Accountability Office provide a useful overview of the effect of the taxpayer subsidies on the price of electricity in that province. Update with Globe and Mail editorial https://www.theglobeandmail.com/opinion/editorials/article-the-hydro-subsidy-washing-machine-keeps-spinning-in-ontario/
To date, most of the discussion of the cost of the Site C project has focussed on the total cost. Occasional Paper No. 77 estimates the operating losses over the first fifteen years could total $5.5 billion. Some funding options are also discussed.
Should the BC Utilities Commission be broadened to address social policy issues? This paper says this would be highly problematic.
In a recent filing with the regulator, BC Hydro is slowly disclosing details on the cost of the Site C dam project. The impact on customer rates has yet to be disclosed.
This paper provides a general review of ICBC's positive first quarter financial reults.
The government of Manitoba has decided to increase Manitoba Hydro rates by 2.5% per year for the next three years. This has resulted in less transparency and accountibility.
Occasional Paper No. 76 discusses the highlights of BC Hydro's recently released 2020/21 annual reportt, including the growing mis-match between Domestic power generation and sales.
Recently, the CEO of Intact Financial stated that the BC government should provide options respecting the purchase of Basic auto insurance. Intact abandoned the BC market at the end of 2020.
This paper continues the review begun on 29 July 2021 of ICBC's 2020/21 financial turnaround. This time the results at the program level are highlighted.
ICBC's 2020/21 financial results show a marked improvement in profits and equity, with most of the improvement due to re-estimation of prior years claims costs and improved investment valuation.
In its recent three year plan, and its rate submission to the BC Utilities Commission, ICBC is forecasting significant financial improvement in the finances of the Basic program compared to 2019/20. Only by merging the two data sets can one discern the forecast for the Optional program.
This paper looks at the major increase in ICBC's back office staffing planned for the next two years.
The government has introduced legislation to expand ICBC's refuse to issue program to encompass unpaid fines relating to the pandemic. The government should reimburse ICBC, otherwise policyholders will be providing another subsidy to taxpayers.
ICBC has applied to the BC Utilities Commission for a 11.5% Basic rates increase to begin to rebuild the capital reserve. Yet the detail of the forecast increase in the capital available by year-end 2022/23 is much less than what ICBC proposed in its initial application. Where is the missing equity?
ICBC's financial forecast for 2020/21 and the budget for 2021/22 show a marked improvement over the significant operationg losses recorded in recent years.
A recent cabinet order has blocked any attempt by the BC Utilities Commission to lower BC Hydro's excessive profits. This is another example of the government's manipulation of the utility and the BC Utilities Commission.