Independent media needs you. Join the Tyee.

The Hook: Political news, freshly caught

Province biased towards big power: Anmore mayor

If the provincial government is keen to have more small sources of renewable energy on the grid, then it should shift some authority over such projects to the communities that build them; that's the message from one small town in the Lower Mainland.

Yesterday, at a press conference unveiling the Village of Anmore’s new solar photovoltaic system (which produces enough electricity to power village hall) Mayor Hal Weinberg said the provincial government and BC Hydro should “jump on the bandwagon for decentralization of energy sources.”

The Anmore project is an example of a relatively new type of power production in British Columbia, one defined by small projects that are financed by private companies and owned and managed by the municipality.

In this case, Anmore has partnered with Renaissance Power Corporation.

The two parties have their sights set on another project; an addition to the Buntzen tunnel, which carries water from Coquitlam Lake reservoir to Buntzen Lake reservoir.

It would divert the outflow of water through a new powerhouse on the shores of Buntzen Lake, producing up to 3.8 MW of electricity.

Guy Heywood, Renaissance’s chief financial officer, said he hopes it will serve as a template for other communities that want to build similar small hydro projects near existing hydro infrastructure.

Heywood said BC Hydro has a limited capacity to approve projects, and said there is an “institutional bias in this province towards big projects,” making it a challenge for municipalities to develop small power.

Iain Black, MLA for Port Moody-Westwood, says while little projects are good, the government doesn’t want to shift decision-making away from a central place.

“Decentralization speak to a lack of power and control,” said Black.

Find more in:

What have we missed? What do you think? We want to know. Comment below. Keep in mind:


  • Verify facts, debunk rumours
  • Add context and background
  • Spot typos and logical fallacies
  • Highlight reporting blind spots
  • Ignore trolls
  • Treat all with respect and curiosity
  • Connect with each other

Do not:

  • Use sexist, classist, racist or homophobic language
  • Libel or defame
  • Bully or troll
  • Troll patrol. Instead, flag suspect activity.
comments powered by Disqus