Four generators at Muskrat Falls are now ready to go and will supplement existing energy sources in Newfoundland and Labrador this winter, according to Newfoundland and Labrador Hydro.
At a press conference on Monday, N.L. Hydro CEO Jennifer Williams said the news was an important step towards final completion of the delayed and over budget Muskrat Falls project.
Now that power at Muskrat Falls is provided through the LabradorIsland link, the company will spend less fuel on the Holyrood power station, which will remain operational while the link is tested.
Linked is of 1,100-kilometer high-voltage DC transmission line from Muskrat Falls in central Labrador, the site of the 824-megawatt power plant, to Soldiers Pond on the Avalon Peninsula.
During a technical briefing, representatives of N.L. Hydro said the province gets about 30 percent of its electricity from the Holyrood power plant, and about $200 million is typically spent on fuel each year, depending on oil prices.
During peak winter operations, the plant burns about 18,000 barrels of oil per day. Electricity from Muskrat Falls will be able to replace about two-thirds of electricity from Holyrood, N.L. Hydrogen.
Customers will not see an increase on their bills until the rate mitigation agreement between the provincial and federal governments is finalised, according to Williams, and rates will not double. She predicted that costs will rise later in 2022, but she couldn’t specify a specific date.
She stated that N.L. Hydro has applied to the Public Utilities Board for a deferral account to capture expenditures and savings that would be distributed after the rate reduction agreement is completed.