Hydro releases new poll on Site C ahead of planned construction start

BC Hydro is touting results of a new poll this morning saying support of its Site C project has increased across the province, however, British Columbians don’t appear to side one way or the other on how to meet future power needs.

The telephone survey of 1,038 people by Abacus Data released Tuesday found that 59 per cent of British Columbians support the construction of the $8.8-billion dam, with only 17 per cent of those surveyed opposed.

An additional 22 per cent said they would “accept” construction under certain circumstances, according to the results, though those circumstances were not defined.

On a regional level, the survey included 303 people from the north and northeastern portion of the province.

According to Abacus, regional support for the dam’s construction is much of the same — just 51 per cent support building the dam, with 26 per cent opposed. Another 22 per cent said they would accept the dam’s construction under certain circumstances.

The telephone survey was conducted between June 10 and 19, and has a margin of the error of 3.9 per cent.

Data from the poll also suggests that 92 per cent of people surveyed agreed demand for electricity in the province will increase in the coming years.

According to the poll, 75 per cent supported adding a new hydro dam and generating station to meet those needs.

However, another 75 per cent supported buying more power from independent power producers operating smaller wind and run-of-river hydro projects.

Another 64 per cent supported building more natural gas power plants.

This story will be updated.

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