The BC Energy Plan Highlights

In 2002, the Government of British Columbia launched an ambitious plan to invigorate the province's energy sector. Energy for Our Future: A Plan for BC was built around four cornerstones: low electricity rates and public ownership of BC Hydro; secure, reliable supply; more private sector opportunities; and environmental responsibility with no nuclear power sources. Today, our challenges include a growing energy demand, higher prices, climate change and the need for environmental sustainability. The BC Energy Plan: A Vision for Clean Energy Leadership builds on the successes of the government's 2002 plan and moves forward with new policies to meet the challenges and opportunities ahead.

British Columbia's current electricity supply resources are 90 per cent clean and new electricity generation plants will have zero net greenhouse gas emissions.

Environmental Leadership

The BC Energy Plan puts British Columbia at the forefront of environmental and economic leadership by focusing on our key natural strengths and our competitive advantages of clean and renewable sources of energy. The plan further strengthens our environmental leadership through the following key policy actions:

  • Zero greenhouse gas emissions from coal fired electricity generation.
  • All new electricity generation projects will have zero net greenhouse gas emissions.
  • Zero net greenhouse gas emissions from existing thermal generation power plants by 2016.
  • Ensure clean or renewable electricity generation continues to account for at least 90 per cent of total generation.
  • No nuclear power.
  • Best coalbed gas practices in North America.
  • Eliminate all routine flaring at oil and gas producing wells and production facilities by 2016 with an interim goal to reduce flaring by half (50 per cent) by 2011.

A Strong Commitment to Energy Conservation and Efficiency

Conservation is integral to meeting British Columbia's future energy needs. The BC Energy Plan sets ambitious conservation targets to reduce the growth in electricity used within the province. British Columbia will:

  • Set an ambitious target, to acquire 50 per cent of BC Hydro's incremental resource needs through conservation by 2020.
  • Implement energy efficient building standards by 2010.

Current per household electricity consumption for BC Hydro customers is about 10,000 Kwh per year. Achieving this conservation target will see electricity use per household decline to approximately 9,000 Kwh per year by 2020.

Energy Security

The Government of British Columbia is taking action to ensure that the energy needs of British Columbians continue to be met now and into the future. As part of ensuring our energy security, The BC Energy Plan sets the following key policy actions:

  • Maintain public ownership of BC Hydro and the BC Transmission Corporation.
  • Maintain our competitive electricity rate advantage.
  • Achieve electricity self-sufficiency by 2016.
  • Make small power part of the solution through a set purchase price for electricity generated from projects up to 10 megawatts.
  • Explore value-added opportunities in the oil and gas industry by examining the viability of a new petroleum refinery and petrochemical industry.
  • Be among the most competitive oil and gas jurisdictions in North America.
  • BC Hydro and the Province will enter into initial discussions with First Nations, the Province of Alberta and communities to discuss Site C to ensure that communications regarding the potential project and the processes being followed are well known.

Investing in Innovation

British Columbia has a proven track record in bringing ideas and innovation to the energy sector. From our leadership and experience in harnessing our hydro resources to produce electricity, to our groundbreaking work in hydrogen and fuel cell technology, British Columbia has always met its future energy challenges by developing new, improved and sustainable solutions. To support future innovation and to help bridge the gap experienced in bringing innovations through the pre-commercial stage to market, government will:

  • Establish an Innovative Clean Energy Fund of $25 million.
  • Implement the BC Bioenergy Strategy to take full advantage of B.C.'s abundant sources of renewable energy.
  • Generate electricity from mountain pine beetle wood by turning wood waste into energy.
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