Paddle event to take place before proposed project

Paddle for the Peace will be taking place this Saturday, July 10 at Lynx Creek near Hudson’s Hope.

Danielle Yeoman and Diane Culling from the Peace Valley Environmental Association spoke about the event on Moose FMs Issues and Answers program, Wednesday.

Culling says people who participate in the event will be able to have a fairly unique experience since they will be able to paddle the river seeing similar scenery to what explorers would have seen a few hundred years ago.

Participants will paddle down the Peace River where there the Site C dam project is proposed.

Culling says the event was started in 2006 when their organization found that there was a renewed interest in Site C since the dam was first considered in the 1970’s.

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She says the dam had been rejected twice in the past thirty-five years by the B.C. Utilities Commission because it had been found that the province did not require the electricity and that building the dam was not in the interest of the province’s residents.

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The rejections occurred in 1983 and 1991. According to B.C. Stats, the province’s population in 1991 was 3,282,061. Since then, the population has increased by close to one million people to 4,113,487 in 2006.

Dave Conway is the community relations manager for the Site C project says that although BC Hydro does export electricity during the summer months, they must import energy during the winter months when the company can’t meet the load demand.

He says BC Hydro estimates that load demand will increase 20 to 40 per cent over the next 20 years. He added that the company is trying to encourage energy conservation, efficiency and will also be working with independent energy companies to use alternative energy sources in conjunction with the proposed dam to meet the demand.

However, he adds that the energy source has to be cost-effective to provide a competitive rate for residents.

Everyone can come out to participate in the event no matter their views of the project. It will start at Lynx Creek campground with a pancake breakfast from 8:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. The boat launch will occur at noon.

The paddle will take approximately 4.5 hours, so residents are asked to prepare for the weather and bring sunscreen, water and snacks with them.

People with all different paddling skill levels can participate and there will be a bus to return participants up the river to their vehicles after the event is over.

For more information on the event, people can call 250-785-8510 or visit www.paddleforthepeace.ca

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