VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – The BC NDP’s decision to go ahead with the controversial Site C hydroelectric dam project has come as a blow to farmers who are at risk of losing their land.
Ken Boon says he and 70 other members of the Peace Valley Landowner Association are obviously disappointed with today’s announcement.
“Very much so. You know, the last few days, we were hearing rumblings this was the way it was going to go. And so, we were kind of expecting the worst, but still, of course, hoping for the best and that didn’t happen.”
He says this is the worst setback they’ve faced to date, but there’s still hope his family won’t be forced to move. “I mean we are all really tired, but we’re not throwing in the towel.”
Boon’s farmhouse — which was built by his wife’s grandfather– was expropriated last year.
BC Building Trades Council, Independent Contractors and Business Association happy with decision
Tom Sigurdson with the BC Building and Trades Council says he agrees with the government’s decision. He didn’t want to see the dead money that would have come with cancelling the project.
“From a jobs perspective, we think it’s also the correct decision. The heavy civil work is well underway and other components of the dam will get underway.”
“We were certainly on on side. But I too, along with the premier had — and have — a number of friends who are on the other side and I think that now what we’ve got to do is turn the project around and all work together,” he adds.
Meanwhile, Jordan Bateman with the Independent Contractors and Business Association says he’s relieved about today’s decision from Premier John Horgan and the NDP.
He says the dam makes sense for energy, jobs and economics “and [you’re sending] a strong message to people looking at BC as a place to invest that yes, even with this government, there’s a chance you can get a big project through. So if you want to bring investment dollars to BC, hopefully this is a positive signal.”
He believes some of the criticism of the project skewed the potential of alternative energy.