Province, BC Hydro and clean energy industry work on their differences

Plus, how coal prices are affecting Teck and how coal trains are shaking White Rock

Power play
The B.C. government, BC Hydro and Clean Energy Association of British Columbia have signed a memorandum of understanding that Clear Energy BC executive director Paul Kariya likens to a “reaffirmation of vows.” In a statement, he says, “We didn’t always see eye to eye and didn’t always air our issues in a productive manner. Today’s memorandum of understanding … opens up clear channels of communication between the three of us so that we can identify snags, resolve concerns, boost investor certainty and strengthen our partnership.”

The MOU, in effect until December 31, 2017, includes commitments from all parties to explore opportunities with First Nations to support B.C.’s clean energy resources; improve procurement practices for acquiring power from clean energy projects; engage together transparently on BC Hydro’s Integrated Resource Plan review and policy for electricity purchase agreement renewals; meet at least quarterly and participate in workshops to review innovative and emerging technologies in renewable energy.

Located throughout the province, often in remote areas including many in First Nations communities, independent power projects currently provide about a quarter of B.C.’s electricity. Clean Energy BC has said that clean energy projects could add more to B.C.’s GDP than the Site C dam.

Coal lumps
Teck Resources Limited is reporting a loss of $2.1 billion ($3.73 per share) in its third quarter, reflecting lower market expectations for commodity prices. “We are taking significant steps to meet the challenge of low commodity prices,” said president and CEO Don Lindsay in a statement. “We have reduced costs throughout the company and we’ve raised nearly $1 billion in two streaming transactions.” Apart from the writedowns, Teck’s adjusted profit was $29 million or five cents per share, down from $159 million or 28 cents per share last year. Total revenue for the quarter was $2.1 billion compared to $2.250 billion during the same period last year.

Track record
The city of Surrey is trying to get the controversial BNSF railway line moved away from the waterfront to a less-populated location. Surrey is proposing a $700,000 rail relocation study and wants White Rock and the province to help defray the cost. Up to 20 freight trains a day run through Crescent Beach and White Rock, with more expected once Surrey Fraser Docks doubles its handling capacity. Several people have been killed, most recently last summer. According to a 2014 study, when three people were killed within three weeks during the summer of 1968, then prime minister Trudeau promised action. Maybe the latest one will follow through—Justin? (via Surrey Leader