Re:    BC Hydro is seeking an EAC Amendment related to the GSS design

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February 14, 2018.
Mr. Chris O’Riley
President & Chief Operating Officer, BC Hydro
1055 Dunsmuir Street PO Box 49260
Vancouver, BC V7X 1V5

Re:    BC Hydro is seeking an EAC Amendment related to the GSS design

Dear Chris O’Riley

On December 21, 2017, BC Hydro announced that AFDE Partnership (Aecon-Flatiron-Dragados-EBC) was selected as the preferred proponent on the Site C generating station and spillways contract (GSS):

https://www.sitecproject.com/bc-hydro-moves-to-next-phase-for-awarding-the-site-c-generating-station-and-spillways-civil-works

We know that BCH has estimated the value of this contract at $1.22 billion, and we have it on good authority that the bid received by the well respected and qualified firm of Peter Kiewit was for $2.6 billion. The spread between those numbers is disturbing, and reminiscent of the problems that are occurring with the Peace River Hydro Partners and their low bid on the Main Civil Works contract as revealed by the BCUC review of the project. Meanwhile, BCH has stated “The proposal by AFDE Partnership is within the revised cost estimate established by BC Hydro of $10.7 billion.” It is entirely not clear what that means. Obviously, the price of this contract could go much higher than the BCH estimate and still fit within the new project cost.
Meanwhile, BCH states that “A contract is expected to be awarded in early 2018 and the contractor anticipates mobilizing to site in spring 2018.”

Question 1) Has this contract been awarded, and for what price?

With the above December 21, 2017 announcement in mind, we note that on December 18, 2017, BCH wrote to the BC Environmental Assessment Office making application for changes to the Environment Assessment Certificate for the Generating Station and Spillways (GSS) Design:

https://www.sitecproject.com/sites/default/files/eac-amendment-request-gss-january-2018_0.pdf

Most noteworthy is the major changes to the spillway design.
This raises a number of questions:

Question 2) Does this not change what is being bid on, and therefore the companies that bid on the original design will all have opportunity to bid on this new design?

Question 3) Or, will this be awarded to preferred proponent AFDE Partnership with cost plus extras to be added to the original design bid?

Question 4) What are the cost and schedule implications of this design change, and was the BCUC notified of this during the review process?

Question 5) Was the government made aware of these potential changes and possible implications to the cost and schedule of the project before their decision and resulting December 11, 2017 announcement to proceed with Site C?

Question 6) Is the new Project Assurance Board announced by Premier John Horgan now involved, and if so, how?

Question 7) Is the drastic change to the spillway design in response to new information on the severity and frequency of high water events due to faster than anticipated effects of climate change happening now?

Question 8) Due to the various implications of these proposed changes, will consultation include public meetings?

We respectfully request a response ASAP or by Friday February 23rd.

Regards,

Ken Boon, President, Peace Valley Landowner Association
(250)262-9014

CC.   Premier John Horgan
Energy Minister Michelle Mungall
Finance Minister Carol James
Auditor General Carol Bellringer

 

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