BC Hydro takes clean power bids; Plutonic offers 1,200 MW of hydro

BC Hydro took proposals Nov. 25 from independent power projects to provide up to 5,000 gigawatt-hours annually of clean or renewable energy, including hydropower.

Dozens of hydropower projects were on the list of developers that registered to bid in the utility’s long-awaited Clean Power Call. (HNN 6/13/08) A BC Hydro spokesman said a list of actual proposals would not be available until the first week of December. A cut telephone cable in Vancouver shut down telephone service in BC Hydro’s offices.

Plutonic submits 1,193-MW Upper Toba, Bute Inlet projects

Developer Plutonic Power Corp. and GE Energy Financial Services announced they submitted two bids to BC Hydro offering nearly 1,200 MW of hydropower from projects costing more than C$4 billion (US$3.25 billion).

Plutonic said the 20 hydro plant sites in the Upper Toba Valley and at Bute Inlet, near towns of Powell River and Campbell River along British Columbia’s southwestern coast, represent the largest single private sector investment in hydropower generation in Canada. The companies announced in August the signing of a memorandum of understanding to partner on the projects, at that time listed as 21 plants totaling 1,034 MW. (HNN 8/15/08)

The Upper Toba Valley project is a series of three sites with a capacity of 166 MW. In August the plants were identified as 30-MW Dalgleish Creek, 50-MW Jimmie Creek, and 40-MW Upper Toba River, totaling 120 MW. Revised capacities were not immediately available.

The Bute Inlet project includes 17 sites with a capacity of 1,027 MW, Plutonic said. In August, Plutonic said there were 18 powerhouses totaling 914 MW: 27-MW Coola Creek, 58-MW Scar Creek, 68-MW Whitemantle Creek, 81-MW Brew Creek, 96-MW Jewakwa River, 47-MW Heakamie River, 28-MW Gargoyle Creek, 56-MW Elliot Creek, 34-MW Elliot Neighbour Creek, 56-MW Icewall Creek, 39-MW Raleigh Creek, 131-MW Southgate River 1, 38-MW Southgate River 2, 39-MW Southgate River 3, 35-MW East Orford River, 22-MW North Orford River, 21-MW Algard Creek, and 38-MW Bear Creek. (HNN 4/23/08) Plutonic did not immediately explain the change in the number of plants and the total capacity.

The Bute Inlet project is north of Toba Valley, where Plutonic and GE Energy Financial already are partnering on the C$660 million (US$620.4 million) 123-MW East Toba River and 73-MW Montrose Creek project. (HNN 11/7/08) Power from East Toba-Montrose already is committed to sale to BC Hydro under a 35-year contract.

Plutonic said the Upper Toba Valley project is expected to be permitted by the end of second quarter 2009. It is to be able to take advantage of infrastructure already in place in the Toba Valley for East Toba-Montrose. The Bute Inlet project has been registered with provincial and federal permitting authorities. A formal application for an environmental assessment certificate is expected to be submitted in late 2009.

Innergex submits five hydro projects totaling 196 MW

Innergex Renewable Energy Inc. announced it submitted a proposal to BC Hydro for five hydropower projects totaling 196 MW on British Columbia’s Lower Mainland.

The run-of-river projects were identified as Hurley River (previously Creek), Upper Lillooet River (previously Creek), Gun Creek, Boulder Creek, and North Creek.

Innergex said the projects were among 18 hydro projects of more than 200 MW in which Innergex acquired a two-thirds interest from Ledcor Power Group Ltd., which owns the remainder of the joint venture. (HNN 9/3/08) Innergex paid C$8 million (US$7.5 million) cash for the acquisition in September. It also issued 200,000 warrants to Ledcor that can be exercised for a period of 24 months at a price of C$12.50 (US$11.71) per share.

At the time of the acquisition, Innergex President Michel Letellier said at least two of the projects, Hurley and Upper Lillooet, totaling 70 MW, would be offered in response to BC Hydro’s Clean Power Call.

Swift Power submits 20-MW Dasque Cluster

Swift Power Corp. announced it submitted a proposal to supply up to 20 MW from the Dasque Cluster hydropower project. The run-of-river hydropower cluster is located on two adjacent creeks, Dasque Creek and Middle Creek, near Terrace, B.C.

Swift Power said its proposal provides details of pricing, risk assessment, delivery dates, transmission routing, and interconnection options. The developer said it integrated environmental, community, and traditional values into its engineering design, adding its community and First Nations consultations revealed broad support for its approach.

Swift Power said it has rights to nine water license applications filed with the British Columbia government for several sites on various creeks in the province.

The Clean Power Call targets clean energy from large projects using proven technologies such as hydropower, wind, solar, and geothermal energy, among others. The Clean Power Call will accommodate larger projects with extended in-service dates before 2017, BC Hydro said.

BC Hydro said it intends to complete final evaluations and award electricity purchase agreements in mid-April through June 2009.

The Clean Power Call complements BC Hydro’s Standing Offer Program, which invites clean or renewable power projects up to 10 MW, including hydropower, to sell to BC Hydro at a fixed price with standard contract terms and conditions. (HNN 6/9/08)

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