LETTER: Solar garden needs more sun

From reader Verne Bystrom...

Solar power is only economically competitive in hot sunny geographic locations where peak power consumption is for air conditioning, like the southern US.

Nelson’s peak power consumption is in the dark days of winter when Nelson’s solar garden will produce negligible amounts of electricity.

Kimberley’s $5.3 million Sun Mine project was subsidized by $3.3 million so Tech Cominco could relinquish its responsibility of the mine site. This site receives much more sun than our solar garden site, but, without the enormous subsidy, the electricity produced would likely cost double or triple our current rates.

Another argument in support of solar power locally is that Germany has a similar climate and they are embracing solar power. A quick Google shows that the cost of electricity in Germany is close to the highest in the world and is three times what we pay in Canada.

Can you afford to pay three times as much for electricity, especially when we already have low cost “GREEN” Hydro electricity in BC?

In recent years, BC has upgraded and expanded our hydro turbines simply because it is some of the lowest cost greenest electricity. Give your heads a shake, wake up, do some research.

I feel sorry for the people that invested in the Solar Garden fiasco, but I am incensed that all of the Nelson Hydro customers are having to subsidize this fiasco without their consent and likely without their knowledge.

If you can manage to wade through the 48 page City of Nelson Community Solar Garden Project Plan, you will find this project is subsidized by Nelson Hydro by at least $75,000.

Instead of throwing that money away, maybe Nelson Hydro should have donated it to the food banks or some other worthy cause.

Verne Bystrom, Nelson

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