British Columbia’s Green Energy Advisory Task Force released a report this week with a number of recommendations that had already been made to the Province to help build its new Clean Energy Act.
Blair Lekstrom, Minister of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources, said in a release this week, “We are building on many of these recommendations as we look at how B.C.’s clean, renewable energy can help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and build a greener economy that generates well-paying jobs.”
As announced by B.C. Premier Gordon Campbell in November 2009, Task Force was put together to provide input to ensure B.C. remains a leader in clean, renewable energy. The task force was composed of four advisory task force groups, focused on:
- Procurement and regulatory reform
- Carbon pricing, trading and export market development
- Community engagement and First Nations partnerships
- Resource development
The Province’s Clean Energy Act, introduced earlier this week, builds on a number of recommendations from the task force, including moving forward on infrastructure projects such as Site C and the Mica and Revelstoke upgrades; Increasing B.C.’s clean energy supply to meet domestic and future export demand; and, more streamlined implementation of policy between BC Hydro and BCUC and review the need for a separate transmission corporation.
Under the new Act, utilities will have the right to implement initiatives to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and/or improve energy efficiency, such as encouraging installation of high-efficiency heating systems like heat pumps or vehicle electrification and charging infrastructure.
A First Nations Clean Energy Business Fund is also being created to support revenue sharing opportunities and to increase First Nations participation in clean energy resource development.
The task force also made recommendations that government is not taking action on, including: increasing the maximum project size in the standing offer program above 10 megawatts; moving forward with Lower Site E on the Peace River and conducting a call for storage; transferring all biomass fuel price risk to BC Hydro under biomass electricity purchase agreements.