Site C Clean Energy Project
The Hudson’s Hope shoreline will be protected prior to the filling of the Site C reservoir. Shoreline protection information can be found here.
Proposals Put to BC Hydro as part of Mitigation for Site C
For sometime, Hudson’s Hope has been attempting to negotiate a mitigation and compensation agreement for the impacts of Site C.
A general agreement on mitigation and compensation is still in negotiation and can’t be made public. However, the District is making three of its proposals public for community review. In Council’s view, they are exceedingly conservative and reasonable. We would appreciate your opinion – and your support as we attempt to get a fair agreement for Hudson’s Hope.
Below are summaries of the proposed documents. The three complete Draft documents, together with summaries, are available on the District website, Facebook, or, in hard copy, at the District office.
No other community in the province is impacted by BC Hydro to the extent that Hudson’s Hope is. We have two dams, one complete reservoir and part of the huge Williston Reservoir, which is what makes the rest of the Hydro system efficient. If Site C is built, just under 20% of its reservoir would be within Hudson’s Hope boundaries. Because of the deep integration of Hydro into community life, we are proposing a Community Engagement Committee to ensure meaningful review of Site C construction and operation on an ongoing basis. Key provisions include:
- Committee of 6 , with senior Hudson’s Hope and corporate BC Hydro representation
- Co-chaired by Hudson’s Hope and BC Hydro
- Quarterly meetings
- Provisions for meaningful information sharing and formal dispute resolution
- Advisory with requirement for Hudson’s Hope and BC Hydro to give input, concerns and issues full and fair consideration
- Provisions for regular information exchange and collaborative review of issues throughout the construction and operation phase
- Contingency fund to address unexpected Site C issues and adverse impacts
- Provision for active involvement and input of technical advisors, participants and observers
- Minutes and annual report
- BC Hydro to fund Committee
BC Hydro acknowledges that the banks of the Peace Valley are unstable and that Site C would cause sloughing. They intend to place a Statutory Right of Way on the land deemed at risk – and there’s a very large amount of it: 1037 hectares (2562 acres) just within municipal boundaries. Being waterfront, much of it is choice property.
The District has prepared and makes public a SR/W document that we are proposing. It is one of the three documents being made public.
BC Hydro has not provided their Site C Statutory Right of Way document, despite having been asked for several years to do that. However, they are continuing to place SR/W’s on land, using variations of the versions used in the 1960’s and 70’s. Those allow a landowner to retain the land title but gives BC Hydro the right to ‘saturate, permeate, overflow, flood, erode, cause to slough, cause debris to be deposited on,’ etc. No permanent structures are allowed on the SR/W. We expect that Hydro’s new document will not be substantially different.
The main difference between BC Hydro’s documents and Hudson’s Hope’s is that the District’s would permit permanent structures on a SR/W property so long as the owner accepts the risk and assumes liability should the structures be damaged or destroyed.
Site C has been negatively affecting Hudson’s Hope property tax revenue since the early 1970’s, when they began purchasing land and removing all structures from it. BC Hydro now owns many properties which once had houses and outbuildings on them, but which now sit vacant. Some bring in taxes as low as 13 cents.
In addition to the historical losses, there will be future losses to flooding and erosion. That land is lost to Hudson’s Hope for development and taxation.
Osland Appraisals was contracted to analyze past and future tax impacts. The Osland Report, BC Hydro Site C Dam Tax Impact Order of Magnitude Study, estimates annual tax losses associated with Site C.
Please do read the three draft documents and let us know what you think.