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Today I attended a press conference hosted by the Canadian Geothermal Energy Association (CanGEA) announcing the release of a new report entitled: “Geothermal Energy: The Renewable and Cost Effective Alternative to Site C”. Immediately following the start of the press conference, we released the press statement below.

Over the last two years, I have repeatedly called on the government to explore innovative new opportunities in the clean technology sector. Most recently, I issued a press release calling on the provincial government to broaden BC Hydro’s scope to allow for the development of a geothermal power capacity in the province of British Columbia.

I’ve also expressed concern regarding the effect of burgeoning debt on our overall credit rating should Site C be approved. This is particularly relevant in light of the existence of more cost-effective alternatives.

Below is the text of our press release.

Media Statement: November 25, 2014
Geothermal more economical than Site C
For immediate release

Victoria, B.C. – Andrew Weaver, MLA for Oak Bay – Gordon Head and Deputy Leader of the B.C. Green Party welcomes the findings of the Canadian Geothermal Energy Association (CanGEA) report, released today, entitled “Geothermal Energy: The Renewable and Cost Effective Alternative to Site C”.

Key findings of the report include:

  • Geothermal unit energy cost conservatively estimated at 7.3¢/kWh compared to BC Hydro’s 8.3¢/kWh for Site C.
  • Geothermal plant construction equalling the energy output of the proposed Peace River dam is estimated at $3.3 billion compared to at least $7.9 billion for Site C.
  • Geothermal plants provide more permanent jobs that are distributed across British Columbia.
  • For the same power production, the total physical and environmental footprint of geothermal projects would be substantially smaller than Site C.

British Columbia has significant potential to develop geothermal and other renewable energy projects throughout the province. Such projects would distribute energy production where it is required and allow power to be brought online as demand increases.

“This is a timely report that clearly validates geothermal energy as a viable, more cost-effective alternative to Site C,” notes Andrew Weaver. “Geothermal projects are cheaper to build, provide power at a more economical rate, have a minimal environmental footprint, and generate more permanent jobs throughout the province.”

“In light of this new announcement, it’s clear that the government should not proceed with the Site C project at this time,” said Weaver. “There are simply too many cheaper alternatives available to protect the ratepayer. The clean energy sector is eagerly awaiting a more fiscally-responsible investment decision that would provide employment and development opportunities across the province.”

The full CanGEA report can be found at www.cangea.ca.


Media Contact
Mat Wright – Press Secretary, Andrew Weaver MLA
Cell: 1 250 216 3382

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