VANCOUVER – Clean energy power producers in British Columbia say their projects have energized the province’s economy through jobs and investment opportunities.
A report from Clean Energy BC finds the association’s 160 members produce 14 per cent of BC Hydro’s energy supply using wind, thermal or solar power, as well as small hydro facilities called run-of-river operations.
Clean Energy BC executive director Paul Kariya says the operations are responsible for more than $8.6 billion in investment across the province.
He says that has helped many First Nations communities suffering from the collapse in oil and other commodity markets.
In addition to creating sustainable and renewable power, the clean energy report finds projects linked to the sector are responsible for about 16,000 construction jobs across B.C.
Future green energy projects are expected to create another 4,500 construction jobs while the report says renewable power accounts for more than 800 current and future operational positions.
One dozen First Nations are members of the private-sector industry association, and the study detailed their participation in sustainable power projects through revenue sharing, employment and training.
“Over the course of a decade, clean power producers have forged deep relationships with indigenous leaders,” Kariya said.
(Clean Energy BC has) “innovated made-in-B.C. solutions to protect ecosystems and breathed new life into struggling communities all over the province,” he said.
“If the provincial government heeds the advice of its own Climate Leadership Team, then we’re going to need plenty of clean electricity. We’re ready to deliver the goods.”