VICTORIA – BC Hydro has launched a call for power, its first in over 15 years.

After months of engagement with the independent power industry, First Nations and stakeholders, BC Hydro has issued a request for proposals (RFP) to acquire approximately 3,000 gigawatt hours per year (GWh/y) of electricity, a release said.

Development and construction of new clean-energy projects in response to the call for power will generate an estimated $2.3 billion to $3.6 billion in private capital spending throughout the province, the release said.

Electricity demand is expected to increase by 15 per cent by 2030 due to population growth and housing construction, increased industrial development and an increase in the number of homes and businesses switching from fossil fuels to electricity.

According to the release, BC Hydro “engaged extensively with First Nations on the design of the call, including close collaboration with the First Nations Energy and Mining Council.”

Projects must have a minimum percentage of equity ownership held by First Nations. The Canada Infrastructure Bank will make loans available as an option for First Nations to help finance as much as 90 per cent of their equity position in a project that is awarded an electricity purchase agreement under the call for power.

BC Hydro expects to release another call in 2026 with successive calls issued approximately every two years. The volume and timing of future calls will be determined through BC Hydro’s long-term resource-planning process and subject to review by the BC Utilities Commission, the release said.

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