Published: Fri, December 07, 2018
Science | By

Numbers for the B.C. government's climate change plan

Numbers for the B.C. government's climate change plan

The plan centres on the province's abundant supply of clean hydro-electric power - with incentives to shift individuals and industry off their reliance on fossil fuels that now make up two-thirds of B.C.'s energy consumption.

British Columbia has announced a climate-change plan that will require all new buildings to be net-zero energy ready by 2032, meaning they would need to generate on-site energy to power their own function.

Garbage will be part of the solution as well: Under the plan, 75 per cent of gas from landfills will be captured to produce electricity.

The CleanBC plan pledges that by 2040, every new auto sold in B.C. will be a zero-emission vehicle.

They include a low carbon fuel standards, which has been in place for years in B.C. and subsidies for electric vehicles. That includes natural gas production in the Peace region.

"The challenges of climate change are clearly global, but the impacts are being felt here", Mr. Horgan said, pointing to the province's record-breaking forest fires, and communities dealing with both floods and drought.

Andrew Weaver, leader of the B.C. Green Party and Horgan's power-sharing partner, said this plan puts B.C. on the path to be a world leader.

The CleanBC plan was developed as a pathway to achieve the Province's legislated climate targets of reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 40% by the year 2030, based on 2007 levels.

The clean growth plan includes "ringfencing" of carbon taxes for industry.

She said now, the province emits 63 megatonnes of greenhouse gas emissions annually, which would need to drop to 13 megatonnes by 2050 to meet the province's goals. That, combined with more charging stations, will cut 1.3 megatonnes by 2030, the government said.

"I look forward to working with government, business and other stakeholders to action this plan, so that British Columbians can count on a bright future where all our communities enjoy a thriving economy and a high quality of life for generations to come", he said in a news release issued by the provincial government. That increased electrification will require 8% more electricity by 2030.

- The strategy will require an additional 4,000 gigawatt hours of electricity over current demand, equal to increasing BC Hydro's current system-wide capacity by about eight per cent, or about the demand by consumers in Vancouver.

"It's a problem for them", McCartney said.

While there was no mention of the LNG sector that poses a challenge for the government in meeting its climate change objectives at Wednesday's announcement, it appears that the plan absorbs the increased emissions from the LNG Canada and Woodfibre LNG projects. Remaining reduction initiatives will be quantified over the following 18 - 24 months.

The Sierra Club BC's campaigns director Caitlyn Vernon said the plan has transparent reporting and accountability.

"When you take into account that we're trying to decrease".

When asked about recent protests in France over rising fuel taxes, Horgan said B.C.'s economy and unemployment rates are the best in the country and the plan shouldn't mean any downsizing. The speed of the plan's commitments aren't fast enough to meet what the science says is required to prevent excessive wildfires and other climate change effects, she added.

The costs associated with the plan are also unclear.

Combating climate change and boosting the economy are not mutually exclusive goals, the B.C. government said Wednesday while unveiling its new carbon reduction strategy.

Note to readers: This is a corrected story.

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