A highly anticipated review of B.C.’s Site C dam has found the project is likely to be over budget and behind schedule and alternative energy sources could be built for an equal or lower unit energy cost.
The report from the B.C. Utilities Commission released Wednesday confirmed many of the concerns that have been raised about the project for years.
The panel found BC Hydro’s mid-load forecast for electricity demand in B.C. “excessively optimistic” and noted there are risks that could result in demand being less than even BC Hydro’s lowest demand scenario.
The panel was “not persuaded that the Site C project will remain on schedule” and found “the project is not within the proposed budget of $8.335 billion.”
Currently, completion costs may be in excess of $10 billion, the report read.
The panel concluded it would be too costly to suspend the dam and potentially re-start construction later and focused its efforts on laying out in detail the consequences of either abandoning or completing the dam. The decision now rests with the B.C. government.