BC Hydro takes a new approach to gauging interest in clean electricity on the North Coast
VANCOUVER: BC Hydro announced it will issue an Expression of Interest in the coming weeks to help determine the need for new transmission infrastructure on the North Coast of B.C. – a region that is seeing significant industrial growth.
BC Hydro has been studying alternatives to bring more clean and reliable electricity to this growing region – including new transmission capacity. The Expression of Interest will help BC Hydro determine the demand for electricity and where potential customers plan to locate their operations. This will help BC Hydro decide how to advance the transmission infrastructure needed to best serve them.
“Fully or partially electrifying industries – like ports, mining and liquified natural gas – is critical to reducing greenhouse gas emissions in B.C. and meeting government’s CleanBC targets,” said Chris O’Riley, President and CEO of BC Hydro. “Industry contributes about 40 per cent of B.C.’s greenhouse gas emissions and represents the greatest opportunity for electrification.”
Electrifying operations with clean electricity will significantly avoid or reduce greenhouse gas emissions. About 98 per cent of the power BC Hydro generates comes from clean or renewable resources and most of that is powered by water. This makes BC Hydro the leader in clean electricity generation in western North America.
BC Hydro is already taking steps to expand its infrastructure on the North Coast. It is currently constructing the Prince George to Terrace Capacitors project that will help increase the transmission capacity in the region by about 500 megawatts – or about a 60 per cent increase. However, this project will only meet the short-term demand and may not address the additional potential loads.
As a result, BC Hydro is taking a different approach to better understand the demand for clean electricity in the area through the Expression of Interest. This approach has a number of benefits. It will result in receiving information about customer electricity needs earlier to help plan and optimize transmission upgrades and speed up interconnections, and informs First Nations and community engagement.
BC Hydro is committed to working with industrial customers who are interested in using its clean electricity to power their operations and reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. It is taking the necessary steps to move plans for potential new transmission infrastructure forward, while respecting the engagement that needs to take place in the region.
More information about the Expression of Interest can be found at bchydro.com/northcoast.
BC Hydro Media Relations
p. 604 928 6468