(1) 250.472.8528
andrew.weaver.mla@leg.bc.ca

Media Statement December 16 2014
Site C Decision a Lost Opportunity
For Immediate Release

Victoria B.C. – Andrew Weaver, MLA for Oak Bay – Gordon Head and Deputy Leader of the B.C. Green Party is extremely disappointed with the announcement by the B.C. Government today to proceed with the construction of the proposed Site C dam.

“The government has engaged in some very creative accounting to make Site C look more competitive than it is,” said Weaver. “They are trying to suggest they have found savings when all they have really done is move the financial costs of this mega project into a different category. The fact is the costs have gone up and so has the burden on taxpayers.”

The updated cost of Site C on ratepayers has been reduced from $83/MWh to $58-$61MWh, with the majority of the change coming from a commitment from government to take less in dividends from BC Hydro. However, this merely shifts the capital costs of building the dam from ratepayers to taxpayers.

Andrew Weaver maintains that Site C is the wrong project at the wrong time. Alternative energy, including geothermal, wind, solar, small-scale hydro sources and biomass, coupled with existing dams would provide firm energy and capacity at a better cost to British Columbians. They would also provide better economic opportunities to local communities and First Nations, with lower impacts on traditional territory.

A recent report by the Canadian Geothermal Energy Association (CanGEA) noted British Columbia has substantial untapped potential for firm, on demand, geothermal power which could be developed as required, in locations close to where power is needed, or near distribution lines.

“I am gravely concerned that government did not compare apples to apples when they examined other alternatives to Site C,” said Weaver. “The rest of the world is taking advantage of the decreasing cost of alternatives such as geothermal, wind and solar technology, while we are effectively subsidizing the construction of another dam.”

“With LNG development not proceeding as promised now is not the time to be borrowing billions for a dam, potentially adversely affecting the provincial credit rating, when geothermal power especially appears far more cost effective. This is lost opportunity to explore alternatives to Site C and I am deeply disappointed in the government’s lack of foresight and leadership.”

Media Contact
Mat Wright – Press Secretary Andrew Weaver MLA
1 250 216 3382
mat.wright@leg.bc.ca

5 Comments

  1. Michael Gilfillan-
    December 19, 2014 at 9:15 am

    It boggles the mind that such damaging and un-needed power generation is approved, and especially in such a corrupt way, even though it is the so called “Liberal” provincial party (well known for their corruption and abuse of power).
    Thanks Andrew for publicly opposing the insanity of a “site c dam”. I look forward to hearing of your opposition in the legislature; and know that there will be many of us at your side, prepared to take action beyond casting a vote at election time.

  2. Mark Neufeld-
    December 18, 2014 at 11:20 am

    At what point do we sift through the rhetoric and have an honest conversation. This is governance by hyperbole. It is not grounded in anything close to evidence, at best and at worst the claims that this mega-project is somehow serving the needs of the future of this province are what amount to science fiction. This government also pays lip-service to concerns of our First Nations’ leadership while proposing to drown millenia-old traditions under an unnecessary flood of words. Should it ever proceed, which I doubt, how many First Nation leaders will we have to jail for the crime of looking out for future generation and honouring past traditions? When does has this government done anything tangible for our future generations? Opportunity lost, indeed.

  3. Doug Darlington-
    December 18, 2014 at 9:00 am

    The power is needed to liquify the fracked gas in order to ship it abroad. So we are subsidizing the LNG industry to the promised tune of 8 billion, which in reality is probably at least 16 billion, while Petronas is heading for the hills. We are screwed.

  4. Anne Spencer-
    December 17, 2014 at 5:25 pm

    I am appalled at this decision as you seem to be. My son, who lives in Sweden, has geothermal heating in his house, and the Swedes are far ahead of BC in terms of how they approach energy provision.I don’t think the public is really aware of how much this dam will cost and who will pay for it because numbers in the billions fade into the ether in understanding. I will probably be dead before this thing ios paid for and I’m glad my progeny don’t live here to pay for it as I think it will cost people for generations. Apart from the cost, the destruction of such beautiful land is a tragedy.The way the energy technology is developing is so fast that putting such an investment into a dam of this size- when we don’t need it at this point – is very shortsighted and sad to see. My question is, should the NDP be elected next time, what could they do about it?

  5. marilyn-
    December 16, 2014 at 3:53 pm

    It is more than a missed opportunity. It is a complete disgrace. We don’t need to do this. Shame on the government for approving this travesty.