Thursday random links


1. Electricity demand slump affecting Canadian hydro utility

BC Hydro says it is trying to get out of commitments to purchase electricity from independent power producers (IPPs), as demand drops and surplus power floods the grid because of the COVID-19 pandemic.


The COVID-19 BC Hydro report shows electricity demand could keep dropping, by 12 per cent or more, depending on what happens with economic activity. Power demand in the United States has also plummeted, making exporting power to regular buyers much more difficult.

Article here.

The COVID-19 report from BC Hydro makes for interesting reading, too.

The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in an unprecedented decline in B.C.’s electricity demand. The drop in demand and the spring snowmelt means BC Hydro has to take immediate action to avoid potential flooding and adverse impacts on the environment and its infrastructure over the year from high reservoir levels.

Lots of reservoir spilling ahead.

2. Pandemic exposes global water supply problems

For the 4.8 million residents of Ethiopia’s capital city, interruptions to the water supply are nothing new. But in the grip of a pandemic, the latest disruption threw into sharp relief the inequality created by limited and unpredictable access to clean water. Without a treatment or a vaccine, the primary advice to prevent the spread of the coronavirus is regular hand-washing and good hygiene. But this is out of reach for millions of Ethiopians living without sustainable access to clean water, laying bare the critical link between water and public health.

Article in Foreign Policy here.