BC Hydro and District of Chetwynd reach Community Agreement on Site C

CHETWYND – BC Hydro and the District of Chetwynd announced today that they have reached a community agreement for the construction and operation of the proposed Site C Clean Energy Project (Site C).

Under the terms of the agreement, BC Hydro commits to specific mitigation measures important to the District of Chetwynd, including those that provide lasting benefits to the residents of Chetwynd and other communities in the Peace Region.

Some key measures in the agreement include:

  • BC Hydro will designate $50,000 from the proposed Community Recreation Site Fund to be used as funding toward development of recreation sites on the south bank between Chetwynd and the reservoir. Community groups, including local governments, would be eligible to apply for funds to develop recreation sites.
  • Construct a south bank dam site public viewpoint that can be safely accessed by the public during and after construction.
  • Work with contractors to identify and increase apprenticeship opportunities and participate in regional workforce training initiatives.
  • Provide a one-time donation of $20,000 to Chetwynd to support emergency rescue services to the community during project construction.
  • Provide $100,000 each year to support non-profit organizations in the North and South Peace throughout project construction.
  • Form a community liaison committee during the construction phase of the project and support the District of Chetwynd’s participation with annual funding of $37,500.

In addition to the community agreement, the District of Chetwynd will also benefit from a Site C Regional Legacy Benefits Agreement between BC Hydro and the Peace River Regional District (PRRD). As part of the legacy benefits agreement, the PRRD and its member communities would receive $2.4 million annually — indexed to inflation — for 70 years, starting when Site C is operational.

Site C requires environmental certification and other regulatory permits and approvals before it can proceed to construction. In addition, the Crown has a duty to consult and, where appropriate, accommodate Aboriginal groups.

Quotes

Merlin Nichols, Mayor, District of Chetwynd

“The District of Chetwynd has been working to ensure equal access to jobs and contracting opportunities for the people of Chetwynd in the event that the proposed Site C project receives approval. We have also made our position clear on the use of the various public roads passing through town and leading to the site of the proposed dam. We appreciate that our concerns have been heard on several occasions and that the agreement generally reflects these concerns.”

Susan Yurkovich, Executive Vice President, Site C Clean Energy Project

“Site C would bring both benefits and potential impacts to the District of Chetwynd. That’s why the community agreement includes mitigation measures that would not only address potential effects, but also leave the community better off in the long-term.”

About the District of Chetwynd

The District of Chetwynd is located in the foothills of the eastern slope of the Rocky Mountains. Chetwynd has a population of about 3,100 with a trading area of about 7,000 people. It is British Columbia’s entrance to the mighty Peace River Country. Located at the junction of Highways 97 and 29 and the CN Rail mainline. Chetwynd is the natural transportation hub of the Peace River area.

For more information, visit: gochetwynd.com

About Site C

The Site C Clean Energy Project (Site C) is a proposed third dam and hydroelectric generating station on the Peace River in northeast B.C. Site C would provide 1,100 megawatts (MW) of capacity, and produce about 5,100 gigawatt hours (GWh) of electricity each year — enough energy to power the equivalent of about 450,000 homes per year in B.C.

Subject to environmental certification, Site C would be a source of clean, renewable and cost-effective electricity for more than 100 years. For more information, visit: sitecproject.com.



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