A formal regulatory process will begin once the report has been reviewed and accepted by the BC Environmental Assessment Office and the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency.

BC Hydro is proposing to construct Site C to help meet future electricity needs in the province – the province’s electricity needs have been forecasted to grow by approximately 40% over the next 20 years.

The project description report provides a general overview of the Site C project and describes key upgrades to the 30-year-old historic design that were required to meet current seismic, safety and environmental guidelines. These design upgrades have resulted in improved foundation stability, greater seismic protection, enhanced spillway safety, and additional generating capacity, says BC Hydro.

The Site C project description report also includes a project cost update based on the upgraded design, and current market prices for labour, equipment and materials. Site C would have an estimated capital cost of $7.9B, and it would produce electricity at a cost between $87 and $95 per megawatt hour.

Site C is estimated to create approximately 7,000 person-years of direct construction employment through the seven-year construction period. The project is estimated to create up to 35,000 direct and indirect jobs through all stages of development and construction.

The Site C project requires environmental certification and other regulatory permits and approvals before it can proceed to construction. In addition, the Crown has a duty to consult and, where appropriate, accommodate Aboriginal groups.

If approved for construction, Site C would be a source of clean and renewable electricity in B.C. for more than 100 years, providing up to 1100MW of capacity, and producing about 5100GWh of electricity each year.