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BC Hydro’s Clean Power 2040 call for public input

Tom Hackney, BCSEA Policy Advisor
Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Have your say on BC Hydro's long term planning

BCSEA recommends that anyone interested in climate action or renewable energy should get involved in BC Hydro’s public consultations leading up to their long term (20-year) resource plan. There are a couple of reasons for this.

First, for the first time in a decade, Hydro’s long term plan will undergo a public review. The previous plan, in 2013, was approved by the BC government, with minimal input from the public or interested parties. But in 2019, the government amended the Clean Energy Act to mandate the Utilities Commission to review the long term plan through its open process.

Leading up to this review, Hydro is consulting widely. This is a good opportunity for people to participate in decisions that will affect them as citizens and as BC Hydro ratepayers.

Another reason to get involved is that Hydro is facing a critical decision: Should it proactively promote switching from fossil fuels to low carbon electricity, in line with measures described in the 2018 CleanBC climate action plan? Or should it continue in the more traditional role of an energy utility, waiting passively for new demand for electricity to develop, and then acting to meet that need?

BCSEA has strongly advocated to the government and BC Hydro that Hydro should proactively promote low carbon electrification, and we say Hydro should factor this approach into its upcoming long term plan.

Under the Clean Power 2040 banner, Hydro is running streams of consultation with First Nations, technical experts, and the general public. The public stream includes a choice of: a quick survey; an in-depth survey; and online regional workshops during October.

Take your pick, but please have your say.