Nfld. & Labrador

Nalcor profits down as oil prices plummet

Nalcor Energy says it made less money in the first three-quarters of 2015 than it did last year, mainly because of lower oil and electricity export prices.
Nalcor is spending big on the Muskrat Falls project, but profits are down because of low commodity prices worldwide. (Nalcor Energy)

Nalcor Energy says it made less money in the first three-quarters of 2015 than it did last year, mainly because of lower oil and electricity export prices.

The company released third-quarter earnings Thursday, saying year-to-date profit to Sept. 30 was $20.3 million with a loss of $1.2 million in the third quarter.

In a news release, Nalcor said Newfoundland and Labrador Hydro made $5.1 million less than in 2014 because of higher operating costs and depreciation — a loss partly offset by an interim hike in electricity rates in July.

However, Churchill Falls made money with $20.2 million in additional sales.

Nalcor had major projects ongoing during the third quarter, including construction on the Muskrat Falls powerhouse, transmission lines and the Labrador-island link.

While drilling at the White Rose oil field was suspended, Nalcor said it is planned to resume in early 2016 and work is continuing on the Hibernia Southern Extension and Hebron projects.

Nalcor's chief executive officer, Ed Martin, said the company's top priority is safety, but profit for 2015 is forecast to be below 2014 levels.

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