Disputing parties in arguments about Site C belong to either of two camps. One is populated by people wanting a share of the billions of dollars to be spent; the other by people who will be forced to pay the huge sums.
I’ve seen claims that Site C is needed because of inexorable demand growth, ignoring evidence of BC Hydro’s consistent dishonesty about the consumption of electricity by BC residents and businesses. The utility’s forecasts conflict with their own domestic sales records.
An uncomfortable truth for Site C proponents: BC Hydro’s most recent quarterly report of shows that, even with declining use of electricity by heavy industry, other demand has been flat for more than a decade.
I’ve seen claims that Site C is the cheapest alternative source of power, but proponents set the value of impacted Peace River lands at zero and ignore the trends with wind and utility-scale solar power elsewhere. (Keep in mind that Site C electricity will cost between 9¢ and 12¢ per kilowatt-hour.)
Per a press release from the Centro Nacional de Control de Energía (Cenace) of Mexico, the department received bids for 3TWh of solar electricity, with the lowest bids being 1.77¢/kWh coming from Italian multinational ENEL Green Power.
This record low price of electricity on earth, just beats out the 1.79¢/kWh from Saudi Arabia, and is part of a pattern marching toward 1¢/kWh bids that are coming in 2019 (or sooner).
I’ve seen none of the Site C proponents explain how further conservation of power is not the cheapest way forward of all.
The governing party was aware of these facts prior to the May election. While I don’t argue with the need for extensive review, by foot-dragging as they are doing, elected officials are imposing further burdens on ratepayers. Citizens would be better off if John Horgan’s team was spending time and energy on elimination of private power contracts, a larger financial drain that results in no capital assets for the public in return.