The Electric Company: A Shocking Realization

I live in beautiful British Columbia, in the GVRD to be specific. We get our electricity from our plentiful amounts of water. We also, like to call our electricity, hydro. Ever since the economy crashed and western culture – somewhat – turned toward green technologies, BC Hydro has had this campaign, Power Smart. The whole idea of the campaign is to get people to turn off their power when they aren’t using it. What a great idea to make people aware of how they are wasting money and impacting the environment.

I thought it was really cool at first. A big company telling people not to be jerks, that’s progress! However, as time went on I started to wonder why a company that makes money when I turn stuff on, would be reminding me to shut it off. In hindsight, I should have figured it out right away.

Basically, BC Hydro wants residents to shut stuff off so it can sell excess power at a premium. That is right, the hydro we don’t use is sold at a higher price to other areas. There are probably some tax kickbacks as well. Maybe BC Hydro can state that the excess power is a loss. Maybe it can say that due to the Power Smart Campaign it is trying to save the environment and get some tax credits that way. Maybe it is just flat out more money in general and there are no loopholes.

It isn’t illegal and I know that BC Hydro is just a squirrel in this world, trying to get a nut. However, it does seem a little shifty to be so preachy, just so it can make more money. What if your Mom told you to not eat everything on your plate. Then she would go sell your leftovers to the weird neighbor kid. That isn’t wrong, but it isn’t quite right either.

Of course, I am just spit balling here. Until recently, it was just a hunch and even now I don’t have all that much evidence. Although, last week there were some talks and articles revolving around BC and Alberta. British Columbia hasn’t been very open to letting Alberta crude flow through the province on its way to the pacific. Now, Alberta has a bargaining chip as the BC government was planning on selling excess electricity from the Site C dam. Turns out, Alberta just isn’t that interested because BC isn’t interested in oil. Kind of a pickle isn’t it? Well, there is always Washington!

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