Common Sense Canadian

Rafe Mair and Economist Erik Andersen, Pt. 2: LNG, Site C Dam and the Global Economy

PostedAugust 13, 2012 by in BC

In Part 2 of Rafe Mair’s July 2012 interview of economist Erik Andersen, the two cover the plan to build Liquefied Natural Gas plants on BC’s west coast – to sell natural gas to Asia – and the proposed Site C Dam. Says Andersen, “Site C is a loser of a project and we don’t need it.”

Andersen raises real concerns about investing in new dams and electrical infrastructure to supply industries like mines and LNG: “…here we are planning to spend basically 30 or 35 Billion dollars of new money – borrowed money – to create an electrical environment for people who are probably not going to be in business in about a year or two.” Watch Pt. 1 of Mair and Andersen’s interview.

On the subject of fixing our wayward energy system going forward, Andersen offers, “Hydro should shut down any calls for new energy. They should take all of the industrial demand expectations off the table, and if there are to be things built to serve industrial customers, they should be built site-specific and they should be for customers at full cost to produce. No subsidies from the public. Then, in my dream of dreams, we would start to look at the existing contracts that are there for IPPs and try and unwind them, try and renegotiate them – and this isn’t anything unusual.”

Andersen references the recent report by John Calvert and Mark Lee, titled, “Clean Electricity, Conservation and Climate Justice in BC: Meeting our energy needs in a zero-carbon future”, which readers can check out for themselves here:


About the Author

Damien Gillis

Damien Gillis is a Vancouver-based documentary filmmaker with a focus on environmental and social justice issues - especially relating to water, energy, and saving Canada's wild salmon - working with many environmental organizations in BC and around the world. He is the co-founder, along with Rafe Mair, of The Common Sense Canadian, and a board member of both the BC Environmental Network and the Haig-Brown Institute.


    Lloyd Vivola

    From South of the Border: an excellent conversation and exercise in “site-specific” ( read: where one lives ) reality-checks regarding energy and environment.

    With peak-oil looming over us, it seems that energy producers, fossil-fuel companies in particular, have locked themselves into a manic, globally manipulated, commodity-driven model of over-investment, over-production, and over-consumption for profit whatever the “collateral damage” in the long-term. Along with their friends in government, they have even made it fashionable to plug green, renewable energy into the “big grid” mix and mentality. A horror. But it is an education to learn how these issues impact our neighbors in BC and Canada.

    So thanks to Damien Gillis and all, as always. Keep beating the drum!

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