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Fortnightly Magazine - March 15 1998

Perspective

Robert Blohm

TWO RECENT shocks could turn up the pressure on Canada's two state electricity giants to deregulate.

After January's ice storm, about half Quebec's population went without heat or light for up to a month (em at the coldest time of the year. Almost one-quarter of the provincial economy was shut down. It was the continent's worst-ever blackout and Canada's worst natural disaster. It cost Quebec 1 percent of its flagging gross domestic product.

The ice storm affected Ontario Hydro much less.

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