Where should BC’s future transmission lines be built? Should they go wherever there is potential new renewable energy to be brought to the grid? And how can this be balanced with the need to protect wilderness and critical habitat areas?
Two important planning processes are underway to address this, both of which will have a significant influence on key government policy, including electricity exports and environmental protection.
In the Western Renewable Energy Zones initiative (WREZ), BC and Alberta are working with 11 US states and parts of Mexico "to identify those areas in the West with vast renewable resources to expedite the development and delivery of renewable energy to where it is needed". This includes listing possible exclusion areas and "initial avoidance" areas.
The BC Utilities Commission's Inquiry into British Columbia's Long-Term Transmission Infrastructure is a provincially-mandated process tasked to look into BC's transmission needs for 30 years into the future, including the potential for electricity exports. BCSEA is spearheading a coalition of groups to participate in this inquiry, which could be very influential in setting the course for energy development in BC. (See also www.bctransmission2040.ca)
The BCSEA took a look at these two critical initiatives at June's Energy Solutions Webinar, with guest presenters:
- Tom Hackney, BC Sustainable Energy Association's Vice President of Policy
- Nicholas Heap, Climate and Energy Policy Analyst with the David Suzuki Foundation
- William Andrews, environmental lawyer
A PDF of these presentation is available for download at the bottom of this event listing.
Please click here to see all our past teleworkshops.