March 10th, 2017
VANCOUVER – BC Hydro responded today to a report by the UNESCO World Heritage Centre (WHC) and the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) about its Reactive Monitoring Mission to Wood Buffalo National Park.
We're disappointed that the report chose to disregard evidence that found Site C will have no measurable effect on the Peace-Athabasca Delta (PAD), which is 1,100 km away from the project.
During the environmental assessment of Site C, BC Hydro commissioned studies from leading experts to evaluate the potential downstream effects of Site C. In all cases, the studies concluded that the project would have no notable effect on the PAD.
An independent Joint Review Panel reviewed studies and submissions on downstream effects from BC Hydro, government agencies, Aboriginal groups and stakeholders. In addition, two days of public hearings were held on the topic.
The Joint Review Panel report, released in May 2014, was clear in its conclusions when it stated: "The Panel concludes there would be no effects from the Project on any aspect of the environment in the Peace Athabasca Delta, and a cumulative effects assessment on the PAD is not required."
Last fall, BC Hydro informed representatives of the Reactive Monitoring Mission that the downstream effects of Site C were studied during a three-year federal-provincial environmental assessment. Despite this, the WHC/IUCN report recommends an environmental and social impact assessment for Site C, even though this has already been done.
It's unfortunate that the WHC/IUCN report chose to ignore details about the federal-provincial environmental assessment process for Site C. By doing so, the report presents an incomplete picture of Site C and the PAD.
The Site C Clean Energy Project is a hydroelectric dam and generating station under construction in northeast B.C. The project is being built to meet long-term electricity needs in B.C. Once complete in 2024, the project will provide clean, renewable and cost-effective electricity for more than 100 years.
BC Hydro Media Relations
p. 604 928 6468