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BC Hydro launches second phase of bioenergy project

With the goals of providing British Columbia with additional clean electricity sources and helping to diversify rur...


March 9, 2009
By Pulp & Paper Canada

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With the goals of providing British Columbia with additional clean electricity sources and helping to diversify rural economies, BC Hydro has launches the second phase of its Bioenergy Call for Power.

According to Minister of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources, Blair Lekstrom, the two-phase project is part of an effort to transform the B.C. forestry industry and move the province towards energy self-sufficiency by 2016.

“The call creates opportunities for new jobs, new revenue streams and new electricity generation in communities around the province, while creating new uses for wood and agricultural waste products,” Lekstrom said.

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Conducted in 2008, the first phase of BC Hydro’s Bioenergy Call for Power resulted in four biomass projects in Prince George, Kamloops and Castlegar.

BC Hydro will conduct the second phase in a two-stream process: the first is a competitive call for larger-scale biomass projects, with the goal of acquiring 1,000 gigawatt-hours per year. All forms of biomass are eligible, including wood waste sourced from new forest tenure, which was made possible through provincial legislation in May 2008.

The second stream will focus on community-level projects using biomass. BC Hydro hopes to identify at least two opportunities that will both result in cost-effective electricity and other local benefits.

“Bioenergy is a real opportunity to convert underutilized forest biomass to clean, carbon-neutral electricity,” said Pat Bell, B.C. Minister of Forests and Range. “Not only will these innovative electricity solutions help diversify our forest industry and forest-dependent communities, it can also help improve overall reliability of the power grid for all British Columbians.”