Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Energy in the Throne Speech

The throne speech was read today and it highlights some energy issues.

I am encouraged by the clear support for more green power. I am also happy to see continued support for the Highway #37 powerline. The government is placing itself at the forefront of clean energy production in North America, this sets us up to gain a lot of jobs, reduce CO2 emissions and add to government revenues. All pluses.

I am looking forward to see the what comes out of the Green Energy Taskforce and what the new Clean Energy Act will look like. We are at the forefront of a paradigm shift here in BC with respect to energy.

Here is the section of the Throne Speech

Clean energy is this century's greenfield of opportunity.

British Columbia is blessed with enormous untapped energy potential.

We can harness that potential to generate new wealth and new jobs in our communities while we lower greenhouse gas emissions within and beyond our borders.

Clean energy is a cornerstone of our Climate Action Plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by one‑third by 2020.

Building on the contributions of the Green Energy Advisory Task Force, your government will launch a comprehensive strategy to put B.C. at the forefront of clean energy development.

We have enormous potential in bioenergy, run‑of‑river, wind, geothermal, tidal, wave and solar energy. We will put it to work for our economy.

A new Clean Energy Act will encourage new investments in independent power production while also strengthening BC Hydro.

It will provide for fair, predictable, clean power calls.

It will feature simplified procurement protocols and new measures to encourage investment and the jobs that flow with it.

New investment partnerships in infrastructure that encourage and enable clean modes of transportation, such as electric vehicles, hydrogen‑powered vehicles and vehicles powered by compressed natural gas and liquid natural gas, will be pursued.

We will support new jobs and private sector investment in wood pellet plants, cellulosic ethanol production, biomass gasification technologies and fuel cell technologies.

Bioenergy creates new uses for waste wood and beetle‑killed forests and new jobs for forest workers.

A new receiving license will give bioenergy producers new certainty of fiber supply, while a new stand‑as‑a‑whole pricing system will encourage utilization of logging residues and low‑grade material that was previously burned or left on the forest floor.

Government will optimize existing generation facilities and report on the Site C review this spring.

It will develop and capture B.C.'s unique capability to firm and shape the intermittent power supply that characterizes new sources of clean energy to deliver reliable, competitively‑priced, clean power — where and when it is needed most.

New conservation measures, smart meters and in‑home displays will help maximize energy savings. New smart grid investments and net metering will provide more choices and opportunities for reduced energy costs and more productive use of electricity.

New transmission investments will open up the Highway 37 corridor to new mines and clean power.

New transmission infrastructure will link Northeastern B.C. to our integrated grid, provide clean power to the energy industry and open up new capacity for clean power exports to Alberta, Saskatchewan and south of the border.

We will seek major transmission upgrades with utilities in California and elsewhere.

If we act with clear vision and concerted effort now, in 2030, people will look back to this decade as we look to the 1960s today.