VICTORIA, B.C. – In a year-end interview with the Tyee.ca, Premier John Horgan says an independent review of the Site C Dam should be finished any day now.
At the end of July, former deputy minister Peter Milburn was appointed to do an independent analysis of the project after increases in the project budget and concerns over the river banks’ stability. B.C. Hydro has already spent $6 billion on the project.
Premier Horgan told the Tyee.ca he expects the report to be made public in late January or early February. “I suspect it will be late January, February before we have a clear idea of what the status of that project is.”
During the election, Horgan said once the report has been received and the evidence comes forward, they’ll be taking a good hard look. If science and economics say it’s wrong to proceed, “appropriate action will be taken.”
Site C’s budget in April 2018 was estimated at $10.7 billion, including reserve and contingency funds of about $1.5 billion. Construction started in summer 2015, and the dam’s power generators were scheduled to be online in 2024, with a 2025 completion date.
Milburn, a former B.C. government bureaucrat with a background in civil engineering, will also provide an assessment of Site C to the province by the fall, said Ralston.
“He will bring a fresh set of eyes and an independent perspective, which I look forward to receiving and see where that takes us,” Ralston said.
Site C will be the third dam and hydroelectric generating station on the Peace River and will provide enough energy to power the equivalent of about 450,000 homes per year in B.C.
–With files from the Canadian Press