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  • Volume Eight, Number Seven: October 2003

    Public Effort Lauded as Key in Stopping Duke Point Gas Plant

    Mass action by local residents and public interest organizations is what motivated the BC Utilities Commission to scrap the proposed gas fired electric generator in Duke Point, just south of Nanaimo on Vancouver Island.

    After a lengthy process that included an environmental assessment, community meetings and public hearings in Nanaimo and Vancouver, the BCUC determined that BC Hydro failed to prove the need for the $710 million plant.

    During the hearings, intervener Dyane Brown, of the Society Promoting Environmental Conservation, noted that the plant would have spewed more than 900,000 tonnes of greenhouse gasses and other air pollutants over central Vancouver Island. As well as adding to global warming, these pollutants could seriously harm human health and the environment in the region.

    "The BCUC decision underlines Hydro's own studies that show a massive potential on Vancouver Island for renewable energy development as well as the need for demand management policies to promote energy conservation " said SPEC activist Norm Abbey. "The bottom line is that a fossil fuel burning power plant at Duke Point was a bad idea."

    He is hopeful this ruling will encourage BC Hydro to consider developing more ecologically sound methods of generating electricity.

    They include the Georgia Strait Crossing Concerned Citizens Coalition, the Sierra Club of BC, the David Suzuki Foundation, West Coast Environmental Law, Georgia Strait Alliance, the Sierra Legal Defence Fund, SENES Consulting, Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society, Council of Canadians, Pender Island Conservancy Association, Saturna Island Community Club, the Nanaimo Citizens Organizing Committee and many other organizations and individuals on Vancouver Island and across BC.

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