We need to find an immediate solution to rising power rates in New Brunswick

The New Brunswick Forest Products Association is appealing to all parties to find an immediate solution to rising power rates in New Brunswick.

For many years, we have advocated for more competitive power rates, reliable and clean energy. Our members have and continue to invest in energy efficiency. The fact remains that there is no substitute for competitive electricity rates for New Brunswick industry to sustain manufacturing plants and related jobs.

The proposed agreement with Hydro-Quebec provided more competitive electricity rates that are critical to the future of the forest products sector in the Province.

New Brunswick’s forests continue to be a leading contributor of jobs, wages, and vital tax dollars for healthcare, education and other programs that contribute to the quality of life in this province. There is no other natural resource in NB that generates the number of jobs and the extensive value chain of forest products. No other sector impacts the number of communities and families that forestry does.

Today New Brunswick still has a very serious problem that requires action. Jobs and communities are at risk. Whether we are talking about the forest sector or new economic opportunities, competitive power rates are vital to the future of New Brunswick’s jobs and communities.

A majority of New Brunswickers agree that the status quo is not an option.

New Brunswick is at a crossroads today. Does the Province want to sustain its position as Atlantic Canada’s manufacturing leader? Can it do so without competitive power rates?

The current debate has brought New Brunswickers a deeper understanding of energy issues in our province and the need to provide competitive power rates for our residents and manufacturing sector. We must not give up on the urgency to focus on this problem and find a solution.