What’s going on with Site C Dam now?
The results of the recent BC Utilities Commission (BCUC) Inquiry on Site C were released on November 1st and it is clear from their report that the best option for British Columbians is to cancel Site C immediately.
Key findings from the BCUC:
- The BCUC is not persuaded that the Site C project will remain on schedule for a November 2024 in-service date.
- The Panel finds that the project is not within the proposed budget of $8.335 billion. Currently, completion costs may be in excess of $10 billion.
- The Panel finds that the least attractive of the three options is to suspend and restart the project.
- The Panel finds BC Hydro’s mid-load forecast to be excessively optimistic and considers it more appropriate to use the low load forecast….the Panel is of the view that there are risks that could result in demand being less than the low case.
- The Panel believes that increasingly viable alternative energy sources such as wind, geothermal and industrial curtailment could provide similar benefits to ratepayers as the Site C project with an euqal or lower Unit Energy Cost.
Encourage party leaders to stick to their promises
Now is the time to remind the BC NDP that many people throughout this province voted for them because they expected to see Site C cancelled. The NDP ran their election platform on a promise to implement Power BC, a plan to cancel Site C and carry out retrofits, upgrade existing hydro infrastructure and pursue wind and solar in this province. They need to know that we expect them to cancel Site C and implement this plan.
The BCUC process was comprehensive and included testimony from many experts. The results are clearly in favour of cancelling this project – not throwing more good money after bad.
We need to let the NDP know that we want them to govern with integrity and a forward-looking vision for our province. We need to reinforce to the NDP that we want our province to be led by progressive thinkers, who value fiscally responsible decision-making and who will embrace new technologies. The BC NDP can demonstrate this by canceling Site C and implementing their bold, progressive plan for the future of BC.
- The Site C Dam would cost taxpayers at least $12 billion dollars — for power we don’t need.
- If and when BC does need more energy, there are better and less costly alternatives. Site C is an expensive and outdated form of energy development that would take 70 years to pay off. Would you sign a cellphone contract today for 70 years? No – imagine the changes in technology and cost that will occur in that time!
- The Site C Dam would destroy priceless and irreplaceable farmland and critical wildlife habitat — squandering our province’s true wealth.
- As a province, we have one option: we can grow it, or we can import it. The natural capital held in the alluvial soils and Class 1 climate of the Peace River Valley is trans generational and is not for us to withdraw.
- The Site C Dam would destroy untold numbers of First Nations’ cultural and spiritual sites, preventing us from moving forward on our commitment to reconciliation.
- More jobs can be created throughout British Columbia by investing in necessary projects such as schools, hospitals and care homes.
- It doesn’t make any sense to throw more good money after bad. However, it’s important to note that the money spent on Site C to date has not been wasted. Northeast BC has reaped many benefits from construction to date including: upgrades to several rural roads; access to gravel sources; utility infrastructure for rural residents; improved telecommunications infrastructure; skill development of the local labour force, including Indigenous peoples; numerous environmental studies useful for future planning and development in the northeast; and, a viewpoint of the Peace River Valley that can be enhanced to provide an interpretive area for tourism in the area.
There are many, many comprehensive issues associated with Site C. At this time, it is important to educate our government leaders and most importantly, let them know that YOU don’t want this project to go forward. If you want to learn more about the issues associated with Site C, check out the Story of Site C, a clear, well-organized collection of facts on the key issues.
This is our last chance – NOW is the time to take action!
Now is the time to write to our government leaders and remind them of their promise to cancel Site C and implement their Power BC energy plan.
This issue is moving so fast right now, it’s hard to keep up. Premier Horgan is meeting with 6 experts on November 30th and the NDP’s decision can come any day after that. They said they will make a decision before the end of 2017.
Make sure you connect with the BC NDP by sending a letter that arms them with information so they can ask the right questions about the project when they meet with the experts and discuss a final decision amongst themselves.
Even a short, one-sentence letter will make a difference. The point is, they need to hear from the electorate. They work for us and we need to tell them what decision to make.
The people of the Peace Valley Environment Association (PVEA) have been in this fight for the past 40 years. We are now at the end of a very long, hard fought battle to protect the Peace River Valley and all British Columbians from Site C dam. This is it. Please make your voice heard and let’s get this project stopped for good.
Thank you so much for all you do to be the change that so many of us want to see.