The province of British Columbia has released an Energy Plan Report on Progress to update the public on the work that’s been done since the province’s Energy Plan was released in 2007.
Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources Minister Blair Lekstrom said in a release, “The Energy Plan Report on Progress provides a snapshot of how B.C. is working with First Nations, industry and communities to develop innovative, sustainable energy solutions for British Columbians.”
The report provides updates on the 55 policy actions outlined in the BC Energy Plan, which focus on the province’s key natural strengths and competitive advantages of clean and renewable sources of energy.
Among the highlights:
- The Infrastructure Royalty Credit Program has invested over $316 million in infrastructure royalty credits to oil and gas companies, resulting in 72 new road-based projects and 53 new pipeline projects, representing new total capital investment in B.C. of over $632 million.
- The $205 million Brilliant Expansion Project has moved British Columbia a step closer to electricity self-sufficiency by adding 120 megawatts of renewable energy to the grid, creating 400 jobs at peak construction.
- Through the Public Sector Energy Conservation Agreement (PSECA), 74 energy-efficiency retrofit projects in schools, colleges, hospitals and social housing save over 8,500 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions and 21.4 gigawatt hours of electricity a year.
- Independent Power Projects (IPPs) provide approximately 13 per cent of BC Hydro’s domestic electricity supply, producing clean electricity from sources such as run-of-river and biomass. There are 1,000 construction workers building IPPs in rural B.C. and another 140 people operating completed power projects.
- Since 2008, the Clean Energy (ICE) Fund has approved investments of over $47 million in 34 projects in communities across B.C., representing a total value of over $174 million to help develop renewable energy technologies like solar, geothermal, tidal, wind and bioenergy.
- Phase Two of BC Hydro’s Bioenergy Call for Power, focusing on larger-scale biomass projects and innovative, community-level electricity supply solutions using biomass, was announced in March 2009. The four successful proposals in Phase One of the call will generate a combined total of 579 gigawatt hours of electricity annually.
- BC Hydro is investing $3.6 billion in upgrades for heritage asset power plants, including existing dams like the W.A.C. Bennett Dam, transmission and distribution systems and other facilities.