Representatives of the environmental community in British Columbia and representatives of Clean Energy British Columbia, the clean energy producers association, have agreed on the following Shared Principles for the Future of Energy in British Columbia, with a particular focus on renewable electricity. We propose these shared principles in the hope of promoting a transition toward a low-carbon economy.
1. We support British Columbia taking the actions necessary to meet its climate change commitments in the short, medium and long-term as laid out in the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Targets Act.
2. We support the B.C. carbon tax and additional increases to the tax.
3. We support a healthy and vibrant economy in British Columbia that respects defined environmental limits and contributes to sustainability.
4. We support British Columbia requiring that 93 percent of our electricity be generated from clean or renewable sources as currently defined under the Clean Energy Act.
Aboriginal Rights and Title
5. We support that First Nations rights and title be respected and accommodated in new energy generation and related energy infrastructure projects. Moreover, First Nations should have a meaningful role in government-to-government decision-making and planning processes for energy.
6. We support a modernized Water Act that protects environmental flows and regulates groundwater in an efficient and effective manner.
7. We support better environmental management, as well as greater project certainty for proponents, through a system of provincial and regional planning, environmental assessment (including cumulative effects assessment at the appropriate spatial and temporal scale), regulatory decisions and monitoring.
8. We support increased resources for government agencies to enable more effective and efficient environmental assessments, regulatory decisions, and monitoring.
Public Engagement and Education
9. We support more effective public engagement in the planning and assessment of energy and related infrastructure development projects.
10. We support improved public education on energy and climate change issues.
Cost of Energy
11. We support the introduction of additional measures to protect lower-income individuals and families from the adverse impacts of rising energy and carbon prices.
Energy Efficiency and Conservation
12. We support the use of pricing, regulations and programs to encourage energy efficiency and conservation where it is less expensive than new supply based on full-cost accounting.
Our Commitment to Ongoing Collaboration
13. We support continued dialogue and ongoing efforts to work towards a common understanding and to highlight and address areas that we have identified together where our differences have yet to be resolved.
Areas of Difference
The members of The Energy Forum have yet to clarify their perspectives on the following topics and have not yet reconciled any differences that may arise:
- Whether or not B.C. should be developing energy for export.
- Adequacy of current environmental assessment processes, including cumulative effects assessment.
- Processes to define additional restrictions on development in particularly sensitive areas.
- Whether or not to build renewable electricity installations in anadromous fish habitat.
- The scope of improvement required for regulatory decisions.
- Whether or not natural gas should be included in the definition of clean energy.