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Site C is BC Hydro’s proposed third dam on the Peace River in northeast B.C. (See location of Site C on map here.) It would be located about seven kilometres southwest of Fort St. John on the Peace River, just downstream of the confluence with the Moberly River. The reservoir would be 83 kilometres long, on average two to three times the width of the current river, and would impact over 57,000 acres of land.
Site C will be a third dam and generating station on the Peace River in northeast B.C. The project will provide 1,100 megawatts of capacity and about 5,100 gigawatt hours of energy each year to the province’s integrated electricity system. It will be an earthfill dam, approximately 1,050 metres long and 60 metres high above the riverbed.
At time of this writing, December 2015, the dam is projected to cost $8.9 billion; however, the price is anticipated to increase as recent history has shown it to do so.
Construction of the project started in summer 2015 and will be completed in 2024.
More details on the project itself and associated construction can be found on BC Hydro’s website here.
Impacts of Site C according to BC Hydro:
“Development of Site C would create a reservoir, flooding portions of the Peace River valley between the Peace Canyon and the confluence of the Peace and Moberly rivers, as well as portions of the Moberly and Halfway Rivers. Site C’s effects on the environment include flooding and water flow impacts on fish, wildlife and agricultural land, local air impacts and construction impacts. Impacts on traditional lands of First Nations would be reviewed, as well as social impacts on the community including those directly affected by flooding of land, highway relocations and new transmission. Construction of Site C would also require a large number of workers for the construction phase, resulting in demand for housing and services, as well resulting noise, traffic, temporary construction facilities and access roads.”
During the open houses and stakeholders meetings, many significant and immitigable impacts of Site C were discussed such as: loss of a unique, warmer microclimate facilitating prime crop growth conditions in the valley; loss of a significant amount of the class 1 and 2 soils; increased fog; elevated greenhouse gas emissions during construction; loss of significant amounts of carbon sequestration ability from vegetation on flooded land; and, elevated methylmercury levels in the fish. Additionally, construction of the dam would cause loss of: critical wildlife habitat; traditional land use by First Nations; aboriginal and non-aboriginal heritage and cultural sites including First Nations gravesites; as well as river recreation opportunities. There are significant concerns regarding stability and sloughing on the clay banks that line the river. At the community level, there are concerns about how a workforce of up to 2,300 people, most of which would be housed in a work camp just outside Fort St. John will impact the community and its services.
Construction of Site C dam began in July, 2015 and it is expected to take 8 to 10 years to complete. Thus, there is still time to defend the Peace River Valley from the majority of destruction that would result from this project.
Please join our mailing list here and follow the social media sites listed at the top of this page to stay informed what is happening with this project and our campaign and how you can help defend the valley.
Please visit “why Site C just doesn’t make sense”.