The Muskrat Falls Inquiry will resume Tuesday. — Telegram file photo Monday, Oct. 1
Former premier Danny Williams , who led the province from 2003 to 2010, takes the stand.
He recalls his objections to past proposals for a Lower Churchill Project (now the Muskrat Falls project), before being asked a range of questions, including on alternative options considered by his government before the decision to sign early agreements, leading to Muskrat Falls hydro. Danny Williams Williams speaks to the relationship between Quebec and Newfoundland and Labrador , and their power utilities.
He said he tried to address imbalance in the profits paid from the contract governing the Churchill Falls power plant, and to get access to transmission lines in Quebec, to look at moving power to and from Labrador.
“They’ve basically tried to cut us out every step of the way,” he said of Hydro-Québec , in describing an attempt to establish access to Quebec transmission lines, and potentially move more power through the province to and from Labrador.
Williams endorses the work of Nalcor Energy on the Muskrat Falls project, specifically giving kudos to former president and CEO Ed Martin , who led the Crown corporation through the sanction and majority of construction to date.
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Tuesday, Oct. 2
Williams continues on the stand, appealing to the public to keep an eye on the big picture when it comes to Muskrat Falls — how it extends from the 2007 energy plan and ties in to the power grid regionally, internationally.
Under cross-examination from Geoff Budden , lawyer for the Concerned Citizens Coalition , asks about Williams’ understanding of the risks associated with the Churchill River project. He’s asked how high he thought costs on Muskrat Falls could go, before the project needed to be re-considered.
The former premier had no number to give. Barry Learmonth questions Danny Williams. — Telegram file Williams is asked about the government’s consideration of Nalcor Energy’s Muskrat Falls figures. “I know you’re giving your evidence based on everything you know, but based on what we have found in our investigation, it appears that government simply accepted the review and work and cost estimates provided by Nalcor up to Decision Gate 2 … without any analysis or review,” said inquiry co-counsel Barry Learmonth .
He said he trusted significant changes in the business case would be disclosed, and that the Crown corporation was reporting to government daily at the time just prior to his departure from the House of Assembly.
He testified he has not been involved with project decisions, or advice from detailed project information, since leaving office.
Read the full story: Don’t panic over power costs, Danny Williams says at Muskrat Falls Inquiry Wednesday, Oct. 3 Aubrey Gover , Newfoundland and Labrador’s deputy minister responsible for Indigenous Affairs takes the witness stand.Gover says the province worked to hear all concerns, insisting nothing was dismissed out of hand as the project was considered and brought to development.He said there were no free rides for Nalcor Energy because it was a Crown corporation. Prote Poker “For Nalcor, in our expectations, our expectations would be the same as Tata Steel and New Millennium, Alderon corporation, Iron Ore Company of Canada,” he said at one point.Cross-examination of Gover is repeatedly interrupted by Commissioner Richard LeBlanc, who struggles to keep questions and responses on point and out of ongoing disputes between the parties with standing.The day closes out with former grand chief of the Innu Nation, Prote Poker , speaking to […]
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