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Measure IPP performance against promises: Kariya

The new executive director of BC's Independent Power Producers Association (IPPBC) said the industry must look at how renewable energy projects measure up to promises made.

Paul Kariya spoke last night in Vancouver at a discussion on green energy development, hosted by West Coast Environmental Law. He was one of 16 panelists representing various groups in the green power debate, including Simon Fraser environmental economist Mark Jaccard, PowerUp president Tzeporah Berman and Watershed Watch executive director Craig Orr.

Kariya joined the IPPBC three months ago with a strong background in fisheries. He worked for the federal government in fisheries and oceans, served as CEO of Fisheries Renewal BC, and most recently served as executive director of the Pacific Salmon Foundation from 2002 to 2008.

While Orr asserted that "we have done a very poor job of protecting fish and fish habitat" in the assessment and development of run of river projects, Kariya said he has seen projects that provided net benefits to salmon, because degraded logging roads and culverts were repaired. However, he also said there was a need to assess the environmental performance of these projects so far.

"Rather than talk in terms of the theoretical, I'm very much for, let's look at the 49 [independent power projects] that are out there. . . and let's go through and see benefits and deficiencies and build from there. It's something I'm going to lead and try and find some funding support for and build partnerships to do."

Colleen Kimmett reports for The Tyee

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