I am still waiting for a reply to our letter to Pat Pimm, dated October 12, 2012, in which we had requested that he, as our MLA, clearly state his position regarding a Shepard Energy type natural gas generating facility.
I understand that the Site C/ Shepard facility issue may well be a “hot potato” in his hands, particularly in view of the fact that the natural gas industry will continue to be one of the main sources of our prosperity in this area. So, why not support this industry by using some of the gas here to generate electricity instead of shipping it to foreign markets?
There can be no doubt that Site C will result in massive detrimental impacts. Some may be reduced in scope by mitigation; others cannot. It will be the local population who will have to bear the burdens for a long time.
The City’s Site C position paper clearly confirms that there are many unresolved concerns, not just for First Nations and people living in or near the valley, but for a substantial segment of the North Peace population. For this reason alone, it is of paramount importance that all politicians (including Pimm) to have a long hard look at the very attractive, highly efficient and cost effective alternative to Site C. The capital costs for a Shepard Energy type facility will be 1/6 the cost of a Site C (for identical megawatts of power) and as a bonus will have a minuscule footprint on the land.
Mr. Coleman, Min. of Energy and Deputy Premier, in a recent letter to us stated - “At a cost per megawatt hour ranging from $87-$95, Site C would be among the most cost effective resource options to help meet BC’s future electricity needs”.
It is interesting to note that Mr. Coleman says, “among the most cost-effective”. This means that there are clearly other resource options and natural gas is definitely one of them. Shepard Energy will be SELLING electricity to its customers at 8 cents per kilowatt-hour (or $80.00 per megawatt-hour). This is clearly CHEAPER than what BC Hydro will be producing the power through a Site C project. Why is this government on the one hand praising the benefits of natural gas and on the other hand in denial when it comes to using natural gas for generating electricity in BC?
Finally, somewhat off topic, I have noticed, (as have all citizens of this province) the very generous attitude of the provincial government when it comes to spending BC taxpayer money - $15 million for self serving ad campaigns, stating “Canada Starts Here” and $11 million for bringing a Bollywood Awards Ceremony to BC at a time when the same government has built up a deficit of $1.5 Billion dollars. In his reply, Mr. Pimm can feel free to comment on this issue as well.