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BC Hydro on Site C: There is uncertainty

Christian Fernsby |
Although the pandemic began at the end of the latest reporting period, it quickly became apparent that coronavirus would result in significant impacts to the Site C project.

Topics: BC HYDRO   

On March 18, 2020, BC Hydro announced it was substantially reducing certain work activities on the project in response to the increasing escalation of provincial measures to manage the coronavirus pandemic.

Work at the dam site was scaled back to only those activities that were critical to achieve river diversion and essential services, such as site safety and security and environmental protection. This decision resulted in a reduction of people staying at site by about 50 per cent.

Work continued as planned in off-site project areas (i.e., Highway 29 realignment, transmission line and reservoir clearing work), as most of these workers don’t stay in the camp and can more easily practice physical distancing on their work sites.

On May 14, 2020, BC Hydro announced it would begin safely increasing construction activities at the dam site in a gradual phased approach.

The phased approach will see the number of workers staying at the worker accommodation increase over the summer and fall of 2020, as work continues to ramp up on the dam site.

BC Hydro continues to closely monitor the situation so that any issues can be quickly addressed and compliance with current provincial guidance is maintained.

BC Hydro continues to work with the independent Site C Technical Advisory Board and the Project Assurance Board to determine the appropriate enhancement measures. The estimated cost and schedule impacts will be better understood once the enhancement measures are selected.

Pandemic related delays will present further cost pressures on the budget. As the evolution of the pandemic is uncertain and the date of resolution is unknown, various cost and schedule impact scenarios continue to be assessed and refined as part of the rebaselining process.


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