December 8, 2017
Jack Gibbons

Letter: Cut the power on surplus nuclear generation
Close Pickering next year, Ontario Clean Air Alliance advises

According to Energy Minister (Glenn) Thibeault, we must sell our surplus electricity to the U.S. at a financial loss in order to keep our lights on (“Thibeault: Ontario does sell surplus power below value,” Nov. 24).

This is due to our dependence on Ontario Power Generation’s inflexible nuclear reactors.

At night and on weekends, our nuclear reactors produce more power than we need. Since nuclear reactors cannot reduce their output during off-peak hours, we have to export their surplus production to our American neighbours at very low prices. In fact, we often have to pay them to consume our excess nuclear production.

The good news is that the Pickering Nuclear Station’s operating licence expires in August 2018. By closing Pickering in 2018, Minister Thibeault can eliminate our surplus nuclear generation. As a result, we will no longer need to pay the Americans to take it away.

In the future, when we need new sources of electricity, we can import low-cost water power from Quebec.

Jack Gibbons
Chair, Ontario Clean Air Alliance