CASTLEGAR – The Honourable Jim Abbott, Parliamentary Secretary for Canadian Heritage, on behalf of the Honourable Gary Lunn, Minister of Natural Resources, announced that the Brilliant Hydro Expansion Project will receive up to $47 million in funding under the ecoENERGY for Renewable Power Program. In addition to representatives of the partners in the project, Columbia Power Corporation and the Columbia Basin Trust, Mr. Abbott was joined by the Honourable Richard Neufeld, B.C. Minister of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources.
"Increasing our supply of renewable energy is an important part of our government's Turning the Corner plan to achieve an absolute reduction of 20 percent in greenhouse gas emissions by 2020,"; said Mr. Abbott. "Our government is committed to ensuring that clean, renewable power from the sun, the wind, the tides and low-impact hydro projects, like this one, plays an increasingly larger role in Canada's energy mix for the future.";
Located at the site of the existing Brilliant Dam on the Kootenay River near Castlegar, the Brilliant Expansion project captures energy that would otherwise be wasted when the flow of water exceeds the capacity of the existing dam. As well as generating 120 megawatts of clean electricity – offsetting some 450,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions – the expansion will also increase the health of fish habitat downstream from the dam.
"We are very pleased that the Government of Canada recognizes the significant contribution that Columbia Power and the Brilliant Expansion project are making to a more sustainable future and a ‘greener' Canada for all,"; said Barry Chuddy, President and CEO for Columbia Power Corporation. "We would like to thank Natural Resources Canada for its support under ecoENERGY for Renewable Power.";
The ecoENERGY for Renewable Power program will contribute up to $47 million over ten years to ensure that renewable energy from this project can be delivered to Canadian consumers at competitive prices.
Announced by the Government of Canada in January 2007, the program provides $1.48 billion to increase Canada's supply of clean electricity from renewable sources such as wind, biomass, low-impact hydro, geothermal, solar photovoltaic and ocean energy. It will encourage the production of around 4,000 megawatts of new electricity from renewable energy sources – enough emissions-free electricity to power about one million homes.