SaskPower flips financial picture with a profitable year

SaskPower turned a profit in the past fiscal year after losing $172 million the year before.

The Crown corporation earned $184 million on operating revenue of $3.38 billion in the 2023-24 fiscal year, according to the SaskPower annual report released Tuesday. The financial reversal is due in part to last year's four per cent rate hike and high demand from heavy industry.

SaskPower paid an $18-million dividend to Crown Investments Corporation, the province's holding company.

Minister responsible for SaskPower Dustin Duncan said the government does not have plans to seek another rate hike.

"We're not looking at this point to go back to the rate review panel to do a rate application," Duncan said. "We're mindful of the challenges people are having out there when it comes to affordability."

The Crown corporation is also on pace to meet its target of a 50 per cent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030, according to the report.

SaskPower CEO Rupen Pandya said the next big goal is net-zero emissions by 2050.

"We've got an energy system that took us over 94 years to build in this province," Pandya said. "Whether it's 2030 or 2050, 15 years or 25 years, we have significant challenges ahead of us. We are committed as a corporation to de-carbonizing electricity as fast as we can by 2050 or sooner."

Pandya said upcoming solar and wind energy projects will eventually add hundreds of megawatts to the grid and keep SaskPower on track to meet targets.

Profits drop at SaskEnergy

SaskEnergy also released its annual report on Tuesday. The Crown corporation made a $55-million profit in 2023-24, a decrease from $126 million the previous year. The Crown corporation saw customer revenue growth in the enhanced oil recovery, potash and power generation sectors.

Even with a smaller annual profit, SaskEnergy will pay a $21-million dividend to Crown Investments Corporation for use in the general revenue fund.

Duncan, also the minister responsible for SaskEnergy, said the financial situation means the province can keep residential natural gas bills among the lowest on average in Canada.