700 instances of non-compliance recorded at 16 river diversion IPPs

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“A Freedom of Information request filed by the Wilderness Committee has revealed significant non-compliance at 16 independent power projects (IPPs) operating in the South Coast region of BC in 2010.”  In their media release 700 instances of non-compliance recorded at 16 river diversion IPPs, Gwen Barlee, Policy Director of the Wilderness Committee states, “This report shows that the IPP industry is poorly regulated and is not in compliance with the regulations that do exist. This considerable degree of non-compliance requires immediate action and enforcement. It’s simply not acceptable to let this industry run itself – the impact to our rivers and fish is too great.”

This issue is also discussed in the Vancouver Sun article B.C.’s run-of-river sector in regulatory disarray, documents suggest. The article states, “The independent run-of-river power sector is in regulatory disarray, following inconsistent rules designed to protect fish and with provincial officials hard pressed to crack down due to lack of staff and resources, freedom-of-information documents show.”

For more in-depth information on river diversion/run-of-river hydropower, as well as recommendations for how the industry could be improved see Watershed Watch’s River Diversion/Run-of-River Hydro page as well as our latest report Tamed Rivers: A Guide to River Diversion Hydropower in British Columbia.


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