B.C. cabinet shuffle adds ‘Minister of Red Tape Reduction’

Plus, the sun shines on B.C.’s biggest solar project and Goldcorp has its ups and downs

Red tape shuffle
B.C. Premier Christy Clark has shuffled her cabinet and added a new ministerial responsibility: reducing red tape. Coralee Oakes is now Minister of Small Business and Red Tape Reduction and Minister Responsible for the Liquor Distribution Branch. Former minister of education Peter Fassbender takes over from Oakes as Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development. Fassbender is now also Minister Responsible for TransLink, formerly handled by Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure Todd Stone. Mike Bernier is the new Minister of Education, and Naomi Yamamoto has been shuffled to Minister of State for Emergency Preparedness under Todd Stone’s Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure. Jordan Sturdy replaces Bernier as Parliamentary Secretary for Energy Literacy and the Environment for Minister of Environment Mary Polak. The Georgia Straight‘s Charlie Smith interprets what it all means here.

Solar shines in Kimberley
SunMine, B.C.’s largest solar facility and the first to be connected to the BC Hydro grid, is commercially operational, the City of Kimberley announced today. SunMine supplies enough electricity to power approximately 200 homes, exceeding the modelled design potential. The 1.05-megawatt plant, located on Teck’s former Sullivan Mine site, uses 4,032 solar-cell modules mounted on 96 trackers to follow the sun’s movement, the first large-scale facility in Canada to do so.

All that glitters
Vancouver-based Goldcorp Inc. doubled its profit for the second quarter of 2015 (due mostly to selling its stake in Tahoe Resources) but reduced its dividend by 60 per cent to $0.02 per share. “The recent sale of our 26% interest in Tahoe Resources, the $1-billion expansion of our credit facility and the dividend reduction ensure the Company has the financial flexibility to succeed in a volatile gold market,” said Goldcorp president and CEO Chuck Jeannes in a release. Reported net earnings for the quarter were $392 million, or $0.47 per share, compared to $181 million, or $0.22 per share, for the second quarter of 2014.