The Official Opposition critic for Energy Development is expressing concern over the current outage at Point Lepreau Nuclear Generating Station.
“In mid-January Point Lepreau was temporarily shut down due to a mechanical issue with a turbine. It has been over a month since this occurred and there have been no updates on the situation” says René Legacy. “They have never publicly indicated what caused the malfunction. I trust government will do its due diligence to find out why this equipment failed.”
Mr. Legacy has heard that the Nuclear Generating station is currently waiting on parts to repair its turbine but wonders why spare equipment was not ready and available.
“It is my understanding that they are supposed to have a back-up turbine system at their disposal, but it seems this was not the case. Why not? How can you not have a spare for an essential piece of equipment that has the power to shut down the entire generating station if it malfunctions” says René Legacy. “Where is the oversight? How many other pieces of important equipment are currently without back-ups?”
The MLA from Bathurst West-Beresford is also worried about the impact this outage could have on ratepayers. “Heating New Brunswick homes in the winter takes a lot of electricity, with the Point Lepreau station down for weeks are we still producing enough electricity to meet the needs of the Province? Are we relying on the more expensive power from Coleson Cove generating station or are we buying power from other jurisdictions? How much are these measures costing the Province? Will ratepayers eventually be hit with a large spike to cover the cost of buying power from other jurisdictions? There are so many questions, and no answers.”