Then the whole thing fell apart. About a year after the project was announced, the B.C. government said it would build the $9-billion Site C dam instead. B.C. Hydro wasn't interested in the project's wind power.
Articles from British Columbia
The country’s largest wind energy organization has announced it is pulling out of British Columbia to chase better opportunities in Alberta and Saskatchewan.
About 130 people crammed into Montney Recreational Hall this week to voice their concerns. Montney resident Delbert Benterud organized the emotionally-charged public meeting as a platform for neighbours to come together and express opinions on the project, which were by and large voices of opposition. “We’re going to see these things all over the whole valley,” said Lorna Wollen, who lives in the property next to the proposed turbines.
How well assessments actually protect wildlife remains a point of contention for conservation groups. “It’s a process that’s run by very good people, but it’s a weak process,” said Kevin Hanna, an associate professor of geography at the University of B.C. Okanagan. B.C. has raised the threshold for which projects are required to undertake a full environmental assessment several years ago, which was “a political decision”.
The district is working to secure meetings with the power authority, in hopes of convincing them to sign agreements with producers that have projects proposed in the Tumbler Ridge area. Lack of demand is the only thing keeping wind turbines from going up on two projects, he said, adding that additional projects are at earlier stages.
One looming threat is the growing presence of wind farms — a threat that wasn’t realized until the first turbine went up in northeastern B.C. and killed two Eastern red bats, a species biologists weren’t even aware existed in the province. “It was a real red flag for us that we don’t know enough about our bats and we better figure it out fast.”
Between 100 and 150 of these machines will be installed, likely on ridge tops where the wind is strongest. That would be a serious imposition on some of the loveliest scenery in our province. ...No one knows how to deal with the unsightly aspect of wind farms. Visual pollution can’t be measured in parts per million. There is no easy way to calculate ugliness.