Public hearings for the Site C Clean Energy Project starting soon

Image of artist's rendering of Site C dam
An artist rendering of the proposed Site C Clean Energy Project.

Process begins in Fort St. John on December 9

The Joint Review Panel reviewing BC Hydro's proposed Site C Clean Energy Project has announced that the project's Environmental Impact Statement contains sufficient information to proceed to the public hearing process. The hearing will begin in Fort St. John on December 9, 2013, and will be completed in January 2014.

"We look forward to the opportunity to explain the rationale for Site C, our detailed studies and mitigation measures, and the long-term benefits of the project for British Columbia," said Charles Reid, President and CEO of BC Hydro. "The public hearing sessions will allow for meaningful participation and input by the public, communities, Aboriginal groups, stakeholders and governments."

The Panel will hold sessions in Fort St. John, Hudson's Hope, Prince George, Chetwynd, Dawson Creek and Peace River, Alberta, as well as a number of Aboriginal communities. All hearing sessions are open to the public. The primary purpose of the hearing is for the Panel to receive the information it requires to complete its environmental assessment of Site C.

Filed in January 2013, and submitted to the Joint Review Panel in August, the Site C Environmental Impact Statement describes the project rationale, potential effects and proposed measures to avoid or mitigate adverse effects. It also includes the benefits that Site C would provide to customers, Aboriginal and northern communities, and the province as a whole.

Site C requires environmental certification and other regulatory permits and approvals before it can proceed to construction. In addition, the Crown has a duty to consult and, where appropriate, accommodate Aboriginal groups.

For more information about the Environmental Impact Statement and the Joint Review Panel process, visit the Site C project website.

Key facts about Site C

  • Site C would provide 1,100 megawatts of capacity, and produce about 5,100 gigawatt hours of electricity each year — enough energy to power the equivalent of about 450,000 homes per year in B.C.
  • Site C would have among the lowest greenhouse gas emissions, per gigawatt hour, compared to other electricity-generation options.
  • It would be a source of clean and renewable electricity in B.C. for more than 100 years
  • Site C would be among the most cost-effective resource options for BC Hydro ratepayers, at a cost per megawatt hour of $83.
  • The project would create approximately 10,000 person-years of direct employment during construction, and about 33,000 total jobs through all stages of development and construction.
  • Construction of Site C would contribute $3.2 billion to provincial GDP, including approximately $130 million to regional GDP.
  • During construction, Site C would result in a total of $40 million in tax revenues to local governments and, once in operation, $2 million in revenue from grants-in-lieu and school taxes.