In the most recent Throne Speech the Provincial Government of
British Columbia announced a policy to transform the province into
a "Clean Energy Powerhouse" and to become a global leader
in managing and responding to climate change.
On April 28, 2010 the Provincial Government introduced the
Clean Energy Act in the legislature. The Act is
designed to achieve three primary policy objectives. The first
objective is to achieve electricity self-sufficiency for BC by
2016, while maintaining low electricity rates for BC consumers. The
second objective is to harness BC's clean power potential to
create jobs in all regions of the province. The third objective is
to strengthen environmental stewardship and reduce greenhouse-gas
To meet those objectives, the Clean Energy Act provides
a new regulatory framework for long-term energy planning, an
enhanced commitment to renewable electricity generation, and
measures to promote electricity efficiency and conservation. More
specifically, the Act provides for the following:
Clean Energy Powerhouse: The Government is
committed to making BC a Clean Energy Powerhouse by increasing
reliance on clean energy sources. The new electricity policy
provides for expediting clean energy investments, protecting BC
ratepayers, ensuring competitive electricity rates, encouraging
conservation, strengthening environmental protection and promoting
regional job creation and First Nations' involvement in clean
Expedited Project Completion: The Act exempts
various core power projects to be undertaken by BC Hydro from
British Columbia Utilities Commission (BCUC) review and approval,
including; (i) the new 335 km Northwest Transmission Line; (ii)
Mica Units 5 and 6 (which will add 1000 MW of new capacity at BC
Hydro's Mica Dam); (iii) Revelstoke Unit 6 (which will add 500
MW of new capacity at BC Hydro's Revelstoke Dam); (iv) Site C
(which would add 900 MW of new capacity at a site on the Peace
River); (v) the current Clean Power Call for 5000 Gwh/year from
Independent Power Producers; (vi) the current Bioenergy Calls made
by BC Hydro; (vii) a Smart Metering/Smart Grid initiative proposed
by BC Hydro; and (viii) any Feed-in Tariff the Provincial
Government should decide to adopt. All of these projects remain
subject to applicable environmental assessments and to the
Province's constitutional obligations to First Nations'
consultation and accommodation.
Reintegration of BC Hydro and BC Transmission:
The reintegration of British Columbia Transmission Corporation
(BCTC) with BC Hydro to form a single entity with one board of
directors and a single executive management team, in order to align
policy objectives and reduce costs. All the assets, liabilities and
employees of BCTC will be transferred to BC Hydro.
Electricity Exports: BC Hydro will have a new
role: actively marketing clean power, both in other Provinces and
to the United States. To promote new investment and jobs in BC, BC
Hydro will become the aggregator of energy purchases from
Independent Power Producers in the province. However, any
commitments to export power projects must follow demonstrated
Taken together, the projects and initiatives contemplated and
provided for in the Clean Energy Act comprise a capital
program that is one of the most ambitious in the history of the
Province, and the largest since W.A.C. Bennett's "Two
Rivers Policy," which developed dams on the Peace and Columbia
Rivers beginning in the 1960s.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
To print this article, all you need is to be registered on Mondaq.com.
Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.
Ontario's Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change continues to roll out its Climate Change Action Plan with its proposed GHG guide for projects that are subject to the province's Environmental Assessment Act.
The Imperial Oil refinery pled guilty to one offence for discharging a contaminant, coker stabilizer, thermocracked gas, into the natural environment causing an adverse effect and was fined $650,000...
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).