Faces of Energy Poverty

a-crying-lady“Our children are our world and they’ve always been well cared for and loved,” said Carol. “But here we are, feeling scared and horrified because this could happen to us.”

Terrified, Carol and her husband do all they can to remain strong for their family.

I usually wait till the kids are in bed and I know they’re asleep,” Carol said. “Then I cry, because I try to be as positive as I can for them.”

Wealth is not only measured in money but what resources you can access to create a safe home for your family and children. Electricity is an essential service in a cold climate country like Canada. Rates in Ontario are out of control and an increasing number of homes are now in default and cannot pay their bills. Without electricity furnaces don’t heat, food isn’t kept safe for consumption in cooled refrigerators, water pumps don’t bring water to a home, sump pumps in basements sit idle allowing water to seep in resulting in mold and structural damage.  What has fuelled the crisis of today?

The tipping point has its roots in the Green Energy Act of 2009 which included the institution of a cryptic entity called the Global Adjustment.  This mechanism is used for recovering differences in costs such as introducing renewables generation systems and the priority access to the grid given for wind and solar. It includes the cost of the contracts held with renewable generators which are paying above market rates for electricity, selling electricity at a loss for out- of- sync demand generation and a growing frequency of payments for curtailment.

Consequences for political decisions made surrounding energy policies are personal. Having your electricity cut off  for non- payment is a nightmare but it is also a measure our society. How do we protect the vulnerable and what will be done?

Cancelling wind contracts would save billions in costs and would be for the greater good.

Read more about Carol’s family at: Hydro One leaves family of 6  without electricity for months:   http://globalnews.ca/news/3085450/hydro-one-leaves-family-of-six-without-electricity-for-months/


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