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GREATWEST KENWORTH CALGARY

GREATWEST KENWORTH CALGARY

Continued from page 61

coming out of that there were 150 very strict conditions imposed on the construction.” The environmental standards and practices when Bennett Dam was built were pretty limited. RK: The new government has delivered on its election promise to submit Site C to an independent review through the British Columbia Utilities Commission. How confident are you that construction of the dam will continue? CO: “Our job in the review is to put forward objective, fact-based information so that the BCUC can make a determination to help the Provincial Government make a decision on

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Hook system, single axle, 14600kg GVW, Air Ride, Air Suspension Seats, estimated 450,000 km, 8.3 Cummins, c/w 3 bins, 1 flat deck. Current MVI, Ready To Go! $36,000.

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Site C. As our shareholder, whatever decision they make is, by definition, a good decision, the right decision. “I have worked my whole career with hydroelectric dams, and they have some unusual features that are beneficial. They last a long time, and because you spend money up front, they actually become cheaper over time as the costs are amortized while the project produces a constant amount of power. We’re just finishing rebuilding the dam and generating station at Ruskin near Mission, and that was built 86 years ago. It has produced power reliably ever since and will continue to pro-

duce power for another 80 years. “There isn’t a comparable asset like that where you put money up front and get benefits year after year for such a long time. We believe those same benefits will be realized at Site C. It’s a unique opportunity given that it’s downstream of Bennett Dam and Peace Canyon Dam. You’re actually re-using the water that’s already been used twice, and you’re taking advantage of the upstream storage a third time.” RK: What do you say to the critics who suggest that because of the emergence of other renewables such as wind and solar power generation, that hydroelectric dams are no lon-

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ger cost-effective, “Power Smart” choice they used to be? Do you point out that even Germany, considered a leader in renewables, is still generating more than half its electricity with coal and natural gas? CO: “We’re very fortunate here in B.C. to have abundant hydroelectric resources, and they’ve served us well for many years. Other places don’t have them, and the ones they have they’ve already developed. So now they’re turning to wind or solar. We’re an excellent hydroelectric jurisdiction, but we’re just an average wind and solar jurisdiction. “We have a fair amount of wind and some solar generation now. But the

challenge with intermittent sources is that while they produce energy, you can’t rely on it to be there when you need it. In B.C. our load, or demand for power, peaks at night, in the winter. And there’s zero solar at the time of our peak load. That’s a fact.” “Somehow you have to translate that solar energy into something usable for people here in B.C. And that’s where hydroelectric generation comes in. It’s a very powerful backbone that you can use to shape and store intermittent energy. We’re strong believers in renewable energy, including hydro and wind, and we believe solar has a place here too. But it’s hydroelectricity that allows

you to incorporate wind and solar into the system – places that don’t have that backbone struggle. It’s a struggle in California, Germany and Ontario to keep it all in balance. “We have among the lowest rates in North America and among the most reliable systems in the country. We have 98%-plus clean generation, which is among the highest in the country, and we have room to support our growing economy.” In B.C. our load, or demand for power, peaks at night, in the winter. And there’s zero solar at the time of our peak load. That’s a fact. b Source: BC Hydro

Supply Post West November 2017  

November 2017 Supply Post Newspaper Western Canada edition