New Hydro-Quebec Price To Be Lower Than Current Contract

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(Host) Vermont utilities say that when a new contract begins with Hydro-Quebec next year, they’ll be paying less for power than they are under the existing contract.

Central Vermont Public Service and Green Mountain Power reached an agreement with the Quebec power company last year to supply about a third of the state’s electricity needs.

CVPS President Bob Young says the utility currently pays about 6.5 cents per kilowatt hour for Canadian power:

(Young) "And we’re going to replace it with a new contract that in 2012 whose starting price will be about 5.8 cents, so you could say certainly from a pricing standpoint, you’ve replaced an old contract with something that’s potentially better."

(Host) Young says the contract includes a price-smoothing mechanism to keep prices stable. The prices are adjusted annually. And Young says the formula for how the price is changed over time will not be made public.

(Young) Those pricing mechanisms sort of represent trade secrets for us, and our view is that if you release some of that stuff then it makes it harder for us to negotiate new contracts.

(Host) The utilities have asked the state’s Public Service Board to approve the contract. Those hearings begin next week.


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