Site C Clean Energy Project

Rank 2021


Image Credit: BC Hydro

Industry Sector: Energy

Project Type: Hydroelectric

Project Value: $10.7 billion

Funding Source: Public

Provincial Funding: BC Hydro: $10.7 billion

Province: British Columbia

City / Region: Near Fort St. John

Estimated End Date of Substantial Completion: 2024

This hydroelectric earthfill dam on the Peace River includes several components: an earthfill dam 1,050 metres long and 60 metres high, a 1,100-MW generating station and associated structures, an 83-kilometre-long reservoir, realignment of six sections of Highway 29, and two 77-kilometre transmission lines along an existing transmission line right-of-way, connecting Site C to the existing provincial power grid.

The project’s rigorous environmental assessment was completed in October 2014 and approval granted after numerous consultation meetings, presentations, and events with the public, Aboriginal groups, and local governments. Preliminary engineering work has been done, including the development of plans for construction access roads, clearing plans, construction materials, geotechnical shoreline investigations, and reviews of highway realignment plans.

In 2017, the new NDP-Green coalition government called for an independant review of the Site C project by the B.C. Utilities Commission to determine if it should be continued, delayed, or cancelled outright. As a result of the delays caused by the investigation, BC Hydro president and CEO Chris O’Riley announced that the project cost had risen by $610 million. The total forecast project cost now sits $8.945 billion, with the additional project cost set aside as a contigency fund. The increased cost was associated with the inability to meet the timeline of river diversion in 2019. However, it was determined that the project completion deadline of November 2024 was still attainable.

In the fall of 2020, the issue of project cancellation was raised again during the provincial election, with Premier John Horgan restating that, because of the estimated $4 billion spent prior to his government taking power, proceeding with the project was the most responsible action. In October, the Peace River was diverted around the Site C dam site. This diversion will now be in place until construction is complete.

Project Owner: BC Hydro

Engineer: Klohn Crippen Berger and SNC-Lavalin (engineering and design - dam and reservoir); Tetra Tech; BGC Engineering; WSP; R.F. Binnie & Associates; Lasalle | NHC (engineering and design - other); Associated Engineering (owner's team - design); Wood (consulting)

Contractor: Peace River Hydro Partners ACCIONA Infrastructure Canada, Petrowest Corp., and Samsung C&T Canada (main civil works construction)AFDE Partnership—Aecon, Dragados, Flatiron, EBC (spillways civil works)Allteck Line Contractors Inc. (transmission line, Site C to Peace Canyon generating station)

P3 Team Members/Project Team: DB(F)OM Team—ATCO Two Rivers Lodging Group ATCO Structures & Logistics Ltd. and Bird Design Build Construction Inc.Other Players: Petrowest Construction (site preparation work); WSP Canada (surveying work); Helical Pier Systems (pile work); Northern Geo (compaction testing); Bennett Jones (acted for successful proponent)

Environmental Services: Golder (EA and permitting, archaeology, agriculture, fisheries and aquatics, socio economics); Pathfinder Endeavours Ltd.; Keystone Wildlife Research Ltd.; McMillen; RWDI Air Inc.; Knight Piésold; Industrial Forestry Service Ltd. (environmental and regulatory work); Morrison Hershfield (project review for EA authority); Hemmera

Other Key Players: AL Sims and Sons (road improvements); Aon (risk advisor); BTY Group (cost consultant); Hatch (environmental permitting); KPMG (lead commercial advisor); McElhanney (engineer, materials testing, environment, and survey); McMillen Jacobs Associates (dam/tunnel analyses: design of tunnel support); Morgan Construction and Environmental (north bank); Paul Paquette & Son’s Contracting (south bank); Kasian Architecture Interior Design and Planning Ltd.; WSP; ATCO Two Rivers Lodging Group (worker accommodation lodge); Paul Paquette and Son’s Contracting Ltd. (south bank clearing); Morgan Construction and Environmental Ltd. (north bank site preparation); Englobe (quality assurance services); Colliers Project Leaders; AGAT Labs; Hanscomb (cost consultant); Deloitte (risk advisor)

Turbine Supplier: Voith Hydro (turbine and generator)

Supplier Other: ATB Riva Calzoni Hydro Canada Inc. (hydromechanical equipment); Advanced Precast

Legal: Dentons Canada (owner's counsel); Borden Ladner Gervais (legal advisor)

Transmission Line Length (km): 154

MW Generation Power: 1100

2020 Rank: 6

2019 Rank: 4

2018 Rank: 4

2017 Rank: 5

2016 Rank: 2

2015 Rank: 1

2014 Rank: 1


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