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“Businesses and consumers want the lowest cost,” says APEC CEO David Chaundy of the Atlantic Loop

By Joe Thomson Jun 20, 2023 | 11:26 AM

APEC CEO David Chaundy (Photo by Joe Thomson).

Much has been made about the federal government’s plan to build a hydro loop connecting Quebec and Atlantic Canada, dubbed the Atlantic Loop.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau recently touted it’s potential to transform the region into a clean energy powerhouse.

David Chaundy is the CEO of the Atlantic Provinces Economic Council. He agrees that the loop presents a world of potential but feels it’s not as cut and dry as the Prime Minister makes it out to be.

“Businesses and consumers want the lowest cost. If we’re going to spend billions of dollars investing in something that is not the lowest cost solution. Then ratepayers and businesses and houses are going to be paying more,” said Chaundy.

By no means does Chaundy disagree with the loop’s potential to achieve our goal of moving away from coal powered energy by 2030. He just wants decision makers to keep in mind the cost of doing so. He says that building the Atlantic Loop means shutting down power plants in some cases 10 years before their natural life cycle is up. That can get expensive in terms of recouping investments.

Chaundy says that we need to seriously examine whether there are better, more cost effective solutions to reaching our goal of net zero. If not, then we should go ahead with the loop, but the government should keep in mind the cost of doing so.

“I think we really want to look at that what makes more sense from a long term economic perspective, and what’s going to do that at the lowest cost,” said Chaundy.

The proposed loop would cost tax payers $4.5 billion, however the federal government has claimed it is the least costly solution to transition the region away from coal powered energy.


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