The main purpose of this review is to bring forth an unbiased analysis of BC hydro’s plan for the creation of the Site C dam. If you want to add yourself to this blog, please log in. The Site C dam, proposed by BC Hydro, would be a large scale earth fill hydro electric dam. (2015). The reason why this project is referred to as a ‘wicked problem’ might be explained by the fact that stakeholders consider the outcomes of Site C dam at different scales and all have conflicting water uses. It will be very useful for my research because of its over-arching findings and as well as its reference to many other papers on hydroelectric dams that I could potentially use for my research. A time-of-use pricing system would thus incentivize people to reduce their overall consumption of electricity in a day as well as shift their use of electricity from peak hours to non-peak hours (Herter, 2007). It would be located on the Peace River in northeastern British Columbia. A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States. Flood Vendor Services Available to homeowners. Counties shows here are in the various stages of mapping including discovery, engineering analysis, floodplain mapping, preliminary and effective. However, the Peace River Valley renowned for its high value farmland throughout the country, would lose a huge proportion of land taken out of potential agricultural production. Bennett Dam. Queen’s Printer. The methods used to come to these general conclusions about the effects of dams included researching many different case studies on dams projects in different regions of the world to examine common emerging themes in environmental impacts. FEMA maintains and updates […] It focuses on the changes that have occurred since the creation of the British Columbia Hydro and Power Authority (BC Hydro). government first identified Peace-Boudreau as a place of special significance in 1969 — a legally binding declaration to conserve it for the benefit of regionally and internationally significant fish and wildlife species. In recent years, many geothermal resources have been discovered along the coast of BC. Queen’s Printer. Retrieved from http://www.ceaa-acee.gc.ca/, Government of British Columbia. Click a county on the map to view the status information. This construction involves numerous stakeholders, therefore different motivations regarding water use have appeared. Energy Policy, 35, 2121-2130. doi: 10.1016/j.enpol.2006.06.019, McCartney, M. (2009). Huge disparities in influence are apparent upon inspection of the governance framework of large hydroelectric projects in British Columbia. Studies have shown that the demand for electricity is elastic; people will change their consumption behavior depending on the price of electricity, suggesting the consumption of electricity will fall as price increases (Albadi and El-Saadany, 2008). Retrieved from: https://www.bchydro.com/content/dam/BCHydro/customer-portal/documents/projects/site-c/site-c-eis-executive-summary.pdf. The discussion section can be bias towards the authors perspective, but the rest of the information presented can taken as genuine. B.C. Map (DAM) shows areas at risk of flooding for the purposes of land-use planning. It is also uncertain when the electricity generated from the dam will be needed in the future: there is currently no demand for greater electricity supply in BC (Ministry of Environment, 2014). Perhaps combining the two potential proposed solutions offers the best alternative to Site C. A system could be developed where hydroelectric dams produce the baseline of electricity using a time-of-use charging system and alternative green energy sources such as geothermal generate power during peak hours. If usage was spread throughout the day, BC Hydro could provide the same amount of electricity to users while using less power overall (Corson, Regan, and Carlson, 2014). One potential solution entails changing the pricing of electricity in BC. (2015, March 8). Building the Site C dam in northeastern British Columbia is proving more difficult than officials predicted due to unstable ground on the northern bank. Everyone lives in an area with some flood risk—it’s just a question of whether you live in a high-risk, low-risk, or moderate-risk flood area. Site C would flood 83km of the Peace River, widening it by up to 3 times, as well as 10km of the Moberly and 14km of the Halfway Rivers. The main purpose of this document is to show the rationale for development of Site C and how the benefits of the project outweigh the associated costs. Many new research, design, engineering, environmental, and labour positions need to be filled if alternative energy sources or time-of-use pricing systems are to be developed in BC. Manage data with Preliminary Flood Hazard Data, National Flood Hazard Layer, and Hazus. You can also see all the areas we cover for free flood warnings and alerts. The sheer amount of references in this article shows that the authors were taking an unbiased approach to the topic and considering the issue from all potential points of view. Moreover, BC Hydro’s flood reserve – a land bank it has accumulated over the years, buying out farmers in preparation for a future dam (Site C has been on the books for three decades now) – has had an “enormous”, detrimental impact on agricultural investment in the valley, giving a false impression of the productivity of the land. Retrieved from: http://www.hydroquebec.com/publications/en/corporate-documents/comparaison-electricity-prices.html, Madill, D. F. K. (1986). (2015). This report was created by BC Hydro officials and summarizes the economic benefits Site C would provide for British Columbians as well the potential negative social and environmental effects and ways BC Hydro will try to mitigate these effects. For nearly a decade, The Tyee has reported on a rising number of earthquakes caused by the hydraulic fracturing of shale formations in the region. FEMA's flood mapping program is called Risk Mapping, Assessment, and Planning, or Risk MAP. Check your risk of flooding: get current flood warnings, check the 5-day forecast or use flood maps Each flood zone describes the flood risk for a particular area, and those flood zones are used to determine insurance requirements and costs. Water Policy, 11, 121-139. doi: 10.2166/wp.2009.108. To create a report zoom and click on a location of intrest - a symbol will appear on the map, then click on the button below to view the report in a new tab. Time-of-use pricing also makes alternative green energy sources such as wind and solar more economically competitive because it causes the price of energy to be higher at peak hours. If completed, it would be the third in a series of dams on the Peace River, which already contributes one third of the energy produced in the province . Moreover, The Canadian Geothermal Energy Association has proposed a portfolio of geothermal plants as an alternative to the Site C dam. Find out more about different types of flood risks. Retrieved from http://www.bclaws.ca/EPLibraries/bclaws_new/document/ID/freeside/00_10022_01#section6, Government of British Columbia. Mind Map that interconnects all the relevant stakeholders to the Site C project. It would provide electricity to 450,000 homes annually in British Columbia and create an 83-kilometre-long reservoir upstream of the dam along the Peace River (BC Hydro, 2015). British Columbia Utilities Commission. The provincial government has created very specific loopholes and legislations nearly ensuring the future of Site C dam. (2015, April 27). Retrieved from: http://www.arcgis.com/apps/MapSeries/index.html?appid=c97e430ab54e4c479e1a4d80f95d5700. Developing alternative energy sources such as geothermal would be a much smaller investment that would allow the supply of energy to better match demand. Utilities Commission Act. Flash flooding is a rapid and extreme flow of high water into a normally dry area, or a rapid water level rise in a stream or creek above a predetermined flood level, beginning within six hours of the causative event (i.e., intense rainfall, dam failure, ice jam). The FEMA Flood Map Service Center (MSC) is the official online location to find all flood hazard mapping products created under the NFIP, including your community’s flood map. Lawyer Argues B.C. Map 16: Site C Dam Location - Km 102-106 The Site C Clean Energy Project requires environmental certification and other regulatory permits and approvals before it can proceed to construction. (2014). Together, they form a precautionary framework to guide planning decisions. Flood zones are indicated in a community’s flood map. The controversial Site C project is surrounded by many different stakeholders of conflicting interests. It also shows that, in general, the effects of dams are universal, allowing me to apply general research done on dams in other countries to Site C. I believe this paper is a reliable source since the authors are all highly qualified in their field of study and have published their article in a reputable, peer-reviewed journal. Treaty research report – Treaty Eight (1899). Adding to concerns: myriad earthquakes. No evident local legislation exists that will have any impact on the Site C dam. As a less environmentally destructive alternative with low emissions and reasonable development costs, geothermal energy presents a viable alternative to the creation of Site C. Although turning to geothermal power would be a safe investment that would eliminate the initial financial losses of Site C, switching from one form of energy to another is not a simple endeavor (Ministry of Environment, 2014). [Video File]. Utilities Commission. I can apply this information to the Site C since it is a new project that has yet to be heavily researched. Residential implementation of critical-peak pricing of electricity. Secondly, the report emphasizes the fact that the economic benefits will come with significant negative social and environmental impacts that will be borne by the First Nations and residents of the Peace region whose traditional activities are mainly based on local ecosystem services. The panel worked under Canada’s Minister of the Environment and the British Columbia Minister of Environment. The Site C Project is a large earth-filled dam currently under construction on the Peace River, near the city of Fort St Johns, British Columbia. This flooded area is likely to cause massive alterations of ecosystem and biodiversity. Understanding flood zones and maps. Implementing energy storage for peak-load shifting. The Development Advice Map (DAM) shows areas at risk of flooding for the purposes of land-use planning. Indeed, the extent of the environmental and societal damage caused by such a vast and unique energy project is highly unpredictable. The 2007 Energy Plan and the 2008 Climate Action Plan have implemented steep emissions goals of 93 percent clean energy generation and require fossil based electricity generation to have a net zero greenhouse gas emissions target (Ministry of Energy & Mines). Newhall Land's property is hand-colored by Almer M. Newhall, who completed the report (Almer was assistant to the president, George A. Newhall Jr.). Site C. Yellowstone to Yukon. It would provide electricity to 450,000 homes annually in British Columbia and create an 83-kilometre-long reservoir upstream of the dam along the Peace River (BC Hydro, 2015). This treaty is in place to protect the traditional use of the lands by the First Nations, an agreement that will be violated by the Site C project. Development Advice Map. A lock ( Wilderness Committee. Since this is a historical overview it can be considered a strong reference source. (2015) Comparison of Electricity Prices in Major North American Cities. Lost work positions from Site C could, however, be replaced by alternative positions. Video showing the importance of the Peace River Valley to its local residents. This change would likely be initiated from pressure the citizens of BC put on the provincial government and represents a hard task to accomplish. The area that the reservoir will be flooding is within the lands of the First Nations that are protected under the Treaty 8 agreement from 1899 (Madill, 1986). This paper effectively draws on information from an enormous amount of other peer-reviewed journal articles to come to an overall understanding of the impacts of dams. Local complaints have largely gone ignored (Hume, 2015) and even with plenty of media coverage the government still has not swayed. Given such setbacks, alternative energy sources may not be developed in time. gains on Alberta’s power pain. Treaty 8 First Nations Court Challenge against Site C began last week. However, the panel also concludes that there is no need for such a massive hydroelectric project in the near term and that smaller, less economically risky, and less environmentally costly alternatives (such as geothermal power) exist that BC Hydro is not willing to invest in. The author also draws on information from many other valid sources. For additional information or assistance, contact a Map Specialist in the FEMA Mapping and Insurance eXchange (FMIX). BC Hydro. Flood maps on this site are displayed over Bing maps. Esri. It is a clean, sustainable and less environmentally destructive alternative to hydroelectric power generation (Ministry of Environment, 2014). Flood mapping is an important part of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), as it is the basis of the NFIP regulations and flood insurance requirements. Living with dams: Managing the environmental impacts. Unlike reservoir dams, which are at built primarily for water storage or power generation, the spillway (opening) is built at the same height as the riverbed level, allowing the river to continue its natural flow in normal conditions. Moreover, the report emphasizes that the economic benefits will come with significant negative social and environmental impacts that will be borne by the First Nations and residents of the Peace region. With the Site C dam, the British Columbia provincial government and the Canadian federal government are the key decision-makers. Retrieved from http://www.bclaws.ca/civix/document/id/complete/statreg/96473_01, Ministry of Environment. It would be be the third dam located on the Peace River. The government knows its position well and sees no need to yield to public opinion (Stodalka, 2015). during peak hours). It is also unclear whether previous energy contracts have been in the public’s interest (Henton, 2008). The creation of Site C dam along the Peace River in northeastern British Columbia will be the biggest hydroelectric power project the Province has seen in the last 30 years. Alaska Highway News. For more information, visit www.bchydro.com/sitec. Site C is a proposed 60-metre high, 1,050-metre-long earth-filled dam and hydroelectric generation station that would be located on the Peace River between the communities of Hudson's Hope and Taylor in northeastern British Columbia. However, the economic benefits Site C provides will come with significant negative social and environmental impacts that will be borne by First Nations and residents of the Peace region. There were 1,144 workers on site from the Peace River Regional District – that's 26% of the construction and non-construction contractor’s workforce. LockA locked padlock McCartney’s peer-reviewed journal article focuses on the impacts dams have on ecosystems and biodiversity and the ways these negative impacts are mitigated in today’s society. It appears that many of the methods currently used to dampen the environ… However, these hiring agreements have been used more often as an advertisement campaign and are not enforced (Hunter, 2015). FEMA's flood mapping program is called Risk Mapping, Assessment, and Planning, or Risk MAP. In order to come to a resolution involving any large issue, there must exist a solid decision-making matrix that adequately represents all parties’ interests. This structure, or lack thereof, becomes apparent when analyzing the project’s governance framework. WHAT IS A FLOOD MAP? It will be very difficult for citizens to convince our rigid provincial governments of this fact, given their all-controlling power on the issue. BC Hydro has not done a lot of research on alternative sources of energy thus would require a great deal of time to have them implemented. The report notes BC hydro has underestimated the social and environmental costs of the project and has not performed enough research on these topics which has resulted in erroneous conclusions. And yet the Site C reservoir would flood up to 30 per cent of these critical ecosystems, including all the islands. Cooperating Technical Partners are communities, regional agencies, state agencies, universities and tribal nations that become more active participants in the FEMA flood hazard mapping program. Agricultural Land Affected by Site C Dam. Your home’s flood risk can change over time due to weather patterns, land development, and erosion. Zoom into your location of interest to find out more. Ottawa, ON: Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency. Learn about regulatory flood map products and access flood maps, Flood Insurance Studies, and FIRM databases. I believe this is a very reliable reference that brings forth an unbiased review of Site C. It is evident the review panel was not swayed by the interests of BC hydro, making the costs and benefits of all stakeholders involved in the project evident. The author’s main argument is that many of the methods used to dampen the environmental effects of dams are not actually working and much more must be done to improve the protection of the environment in dam projects. Legislation leading to the current situation began with the province merging British Columbia Electric with British Columbia Power Commission to create the crown corporation BC Hydro (Ministry of Energy & Mines) in 1962. The panel concludes that there is no need for such a massive hydroelectric project in the near term and that smaller, less economically risky, and less environmentally costly alternatives exist that BC Hydro is not willing to invest in. Retrieved from: https://www.ceaa-acee.gc.ca/050/documents/p63919/99173E.pdf. “Our people have a deep connection with this land because our ancestors told the stories and legends that are connected to that valley.” - Chief Liz Logan, Treaty 8 Tribal Association, testifying before the environmental impact assessment of the proposed Site C hydroelectric dam. On the one hand, federal and provincial governments seek to increase the share of hydropower throughout the Province, while on the other, First Nations people along with local populations are afraid of the environmental impacts such a massive construction could have on biodiversity and their traditional practices. If you believe your property was incorrectly identified as a Special Flood Hazard Area, you may submit an application to FEMA for a formal determination and potential revision. Retrieved from: http://www.csemag.com/single-article/implementing-energy-storage-for-peak-load-shifting/95b3d2a5db6725428142c5a605ac6d89.html, Henton, D. (2008). As with any project of this scale, there is some uncertainty and instability involved. British Columbia Ministry of Energy & Mines. There are, however, several limitations and challenges that arise with this approach to energy conservation. I believe this article is reliable because the author is highly qualified in his field of study and was able to publish this article in a renowned journal. These regulatory flood maps are called a Flood Insurance Rate Map. Local hiring agreements have also been made to ensure a small portion of the economic growth will remain in the area. No account required; Manually researched; FEMA Flood Map Specialist or CFM Currently no international agreements govern the development of hydroelectric dams in Canada. There are small text boxes throughout the report with statements on how strong and reputable of a company BC Hydro is. It is evident that this conflict was foreseen by those writing legislation and the documents were edited in favour of the provincial government. This is literature from the British Columbia Ministry of Energy & Mines. (2015). Firstly, according to the Joint Review Panel, working under Canada’s Minister of the Environment, and the BC Minister of Environment, Site C has the potential to create significant economic benefits for future electricity consumers in British Columbia (Ministry of Environment, 2014). Since then, the provincial government has been cutting out any undesirable stakeholder dissention. The report states that greenhouse emissions in BC could be reduced by investing in hydroelectric power instead of liquefied natural gas (LNG). It appears that BC hydro has underestimated the social and environmental costs of the Project and the panel to conclude that the Crown corporation has not performed enough research on these topics which has resulted in erroneous conclusions (Ministry of Environment, 2014). There has not been any proof showing absolute necessity of the Site C dam, in fact alternatives are lined out in the Joint Panel Review (Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency, 2014). The methods used to come to these general conclusions about the effects of dams include researching many different case studies on dams’ projects in different regions of the world to examine common emerging themes in environmental impacts. Primary motivation comes from the province that gains profit from the crown corporation’s energy sales. If creation of the Site C dam is stopped, many current and future jobs will be lost. Time-of-use pricing consists of charging customers more for electricity during peak hours. Retrieved from: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rQDbBWjbxng, Wilderness Committee. Retrieved from http://www.canada.com/story_print.html?id=c4dfeb43-b0ca-4af7-a98a-1e5315ee1f4e, Hume, M. (2015, April 23). The DAM should be used alongside Planning Policy Wales and Technical Advice Note (TAN) 15 to guide new development away from areas at risk of flooding wherever possible. Hydro Quebec. Although the problems seem easy to define they are dynamic, as conditions could change drastically over the 100-year lifespan of the project. Stop Site C. Retrieved from: http://www.stopsitec.org/treaty_8_first_nations_court_challenge_against_site_c_began_last_week, Peterson, L. (2014). Negative effects of dams are similar across the world and sustainable dam development lies in the ability of a country’s citizens to advocate for protection of their livelihoods and the environment (Beck, 2012). We must work together to show our government that economically feasible solutions exist that would reduce the large scale social and environmental damage caused by the Site C dam.for the potentially increasing demand for electricity in BC. It is said that this area could feed up to 1 million people (1/4 of the province’s population).The maps created by Delorme shows the length of Site C reservoir (in blue) and the area that is about to be lost. The Peace River Valley in northeast British Columbia is a unique ecosystem and one of the very few areas in the region that so far has been largely preserved from large-scale resource development. (2015). Dam breach and flood modelling techniques were used to produce a national set of reservoir flood maps for England and Wales. 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