Northern Leader Sounds Off On Home Heating Costs

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 at 13:03



A development official in the Far North says if Saskatchewan residents don’t like the prospect of a substantial natural gas rate hike this winter — at the very least, they don’t have to cope with the high home heating costs in his region.


The provincial government has applied to raise natural gas rates by 41 per cent.


Athabasca Economic Development and Training Corporation chair Glen Strong says because SaskHousing has been removing wood-burning stoves in its units in the Athabasca region, residents there have to rely on heating oil or electricity for heat — which usually translates into heating bills of more than $600 a month during the winter.


Strong says even with the proposed natural gas hike, the cost of heating a home in the south is nothing like it is in the Far North.


And while he applauds the government for promising to deliver some sort of relief to natural gas customers, he also wonders why there hasn’t been relief given to Far North residents who have been dealing with “unreasonable” energy costs for years.


Strong says this is yet another reason why Ottawa and the province should stop their jurisdictional squabbling and finally build an all-weather road network in his region — a project he says would bring heating costs down.