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Tribal Chief Liz Logan, shown at the B.C. Legislature in Victoria in 2010, told a Joint Review Panel in January, 2014, that native bands in the Peace River area are determined to prevent construction of BC Hydro’s Site C dam.GEOFF HOWE/The Globe and Mail

Key points raised by the Joint Review Panel on the Site C Clean Energy project proposal, from its 471-page report:

1. Project costs need detailed review

"The Panel cannot conclude on the likely accuracy of project cost estimates because it does not have the information, time, or resources. … If it is decided that the project should proceed, a first step should be the referral of project costs and hence unit energy costs and revenue requirements to the B.C. Utilities Commission for detailed examination."  (Recommendation 46, page 280 [PDF])

2. First Nations' land use stands to be harmed by Site C

"The panel disagrees with BC Hydro and concludes that the project would likely cause a significant adverse effect on fishing opportunities and practices for the First Nations represented by Treaty 8 Tribal Association, Saulteau First Nations, and Blueberry River First Nations, and that these effects cannot be mitigated." The panel made a similar finding about First Nations' hunting and trapping rights. (Recommendation 20, pages 314-15 [PDF])

3. BC Hydro does not understand the opportunity of alternative energy sources

"The 1983 BCUC decision on Site C advised BC Hydro to explore the possibilities of unconventional energy sources, including geothermal energy, but little was done. … In the recent past, B.C. has enjoyed plentiful low-cost electricity, making the exploration of alternative renewable sources seem less than urgent. But times have changed. Failure to ramp up this work a decade ago means that BC Hydro is without a well-understood opportunity in the present." (Recommendation 48, pages 299-300 [PDF])

4. Site C is not for LNG

"The panel concludes that it is unlikely that the transmission and liquefaction energy requirements of the new liquefied natural gas industry will be satisfied by any source except natural gas itself, and thus that BC Hydro's Integrated Resource Plan sensitivity scenario of 'Low Liquefied Natural Gas' forecast is most likely correct." However, the panel recommends that BC Hydro's forecasts be reviewed by its independent regulator before construction begins. (Recommendation 47, page 324 [PDF])

Read next: Joint Review Panel says if government chooses to move ahead with dam, further independent appraisal is needed or Vote on whether you support the project

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