In partnership with the Government of Canada, the Province and BC Hydro are reducing rates and lowering the costs of connecting to the electricity grid to help industries, public transportation agencies and neighbourhood energy systems reduce greenhouse gas emissions and attract new clean tech industries to British Columbia.
“From the shock of a global pandemic to the threat of a changing climate, the challenges we face today also present opportunities as we build a brighter future after COVID-19,” said Premier John Horgan. “Today we are announcing plans to make it more affordable for industries to power up with clean B.C. electricity — helping spur new investment and job creation while reducing carbon pollution.”
BC Hydro will provide new CleanBC industrial electrification rates that will offer a discount on BC Hydro’s standard industrial rates to:
- new clean industries setting up or expanding operations in B.C., including hydrogen and biofuels;
- eligible existing customers that install new equipment that uses electricity rather than fossil fuels; and
- eligible new customers that can demonstrate they could have used fossil fuels rather than electricity to power their facilities.
In addition, the Province has directed $84.4 million from the Government of Canada’s Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program (ICIP) to create a new CleanBC Facilities Electrification Fund that will provide support to customers to reduce the costs of connecting to the electricity grid or upgrading their connections to use more electricity and reduce air pollution.
“We’re making it easier and more affordable for mines, clean technology companies and other sectors to use more of B.C.’s clean, reliable hydroelectricity instead of fossil fuels,” said Bruce Ralston, Minister of Energy, Mines and Low Carbon Innovation. “Fast-tracking electrification across our economy will support economic recovery and cleaner public transportation, create jobs for British Columbians and attract new investment to our province.”
By creating the new industrial rates and supporting the construction of transmission lines, transformers and other system upgrades, the Province is encouraging existing and new BC Hydro customers to electrify their operations by connecting to the grid, helping to keep rates affordable for everyone.
Seamus O’Regan, Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources, on behalf of Catherine McKenna, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities –
“These are generational investments to create jobs, lower emissions, increase competitiveness, and make clean energy technology more accessible for Canadians.”
Chris O’Riley, president and CEO, BC Hydro –
“We’re committed to working with industrial customers who are interested in using clean electricity to power their operations. That’s why we’re offering a 20% discount from our standard industrial electricity rates for eligible new and existing customers looking to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions and their use of fossil fuels.”
Michael Goehring, president and CEO, Mining Association of BC –
“B.C.’s mines and smelters, and our responsibly produced low carbon minerals and metals, are essential to build the low carbon economy and tackle global climate change. BC Hydro's new electrification tariffs will help our sector electrify operations even further, and introduce new innovations, consolidating our position as a world leader.”
Mark Kirby, president and CEO, Canadian Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Association –
“Hydrogen BC, a branch of the Canadian Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Association (CHFCA), applauds the new CleanBC Facilities Electrification Fund and the new clean industry power rate. The discounted power rate will enable the production in B.C. of cost-effective, clean hydrogen, which is essential for the decarbonization of challenging sectors of the B.C. economy, including heating, industrial processing and transportation applications, such as trucks, buses, trains, marine and aviation. The new fund and rate will support Hydrogen BC and its member companies as they work to develop new hydrogen production facilities and hydrogen application hubs throughout B.C.”
Ian Thompson, president, Advanced Biofuels Canada –
“BC Hydro’s new rates for low-carbon fuel producers will further strengthen B.C.’s leadership in clean fuel development. This program complements stable, effective policies such as the Low Carbon Fuel Standard, and with it, B.C. will see more investment inflow into the low carbon fuel sector and continued positive impact on jobs in communities across the province.”
For more information on the CleanBC Industrial Electrification Rates, visit: https://app.bchydro.com/accounts-billing/rates-energy-use/electricity-rates/electrification-rates.html
For more information on the CleanBC Facilities Electrification Fund, visit: bchydro.com/electrificationfund
To learn more about the CleanBC climate action plan, visit: https://cleanbc.gov.bc.ca/
To learn more about the B.C. government’s economic plan to help people, businesses and communities recover from the impacts of COVID-19, visit: https://strongerbc.gov.bc.ca/
For information on the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program – British Columbia, visit: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/transportation/funding-engagement-permits/funding-grants/investing-in-canada-infrastructure-program
Two backgrounders follow.