Re­gional dis­trict ap­proves landfill gas deal

The Prince George Citizen - - Front Page - Mark NIELSEN Cit­i­zen staff

A ten­ta­tive deal to make the Foothills landfill a source of fuel for For­tisBC has been ad­vanced a step.

Fraser-Fort Ge­orge Re­gional Dis­trict di­rec­tors gave fi­nal ap­proval on Thurs­day af­ter it cleared the elec­tor ap­proval stage.

Be­cause it en­tails en­ter­ing a 20-year agree­ment, it had been sub­ject to vot­ers’ con­sent via an al­ter­na­tive ap­proval process. Less than 10 per cent of the elec­torate ex­press op­po­si­tion through the process, al­low­ing di­rec­tors to rat­ify the deal which re­mains sub­ject to ap­proval from the B.C. Util­i­ties Com­mis­sion.

Un­der the terms, For­tisBC will ex­tract meth­ane gas from the landfill and in­ject it into its nat­u­ral gas dis­tri­bu­tion sys­tem.

For­tisBC would pay the FFGRD $75,000 to $145,000 per year and be re­spon­si­ble for fi­nanc­ing, con­struct­ing and op­er­at­ing a pro­cess­ing plant on the landfill to pu­rify the gas be­fore it’s pumped into the sys­tem. Build­ing the plant will cost an es­ti­mated $8.5 mil­lion and cost a fur­ther $500,000 per year to op­er­ate, ac­cord­ing to a For­tisBC pre­sen­ta­tion to di­rec­tors.

The FFGRD will re­main re­spon­si­ble for up­grades and main­te­nance to the landfill’s gas col­lec­tion sys­tem and would be ob­li­gated to sup­ply 75,000 to 125,000 gi­gagoules of gas per year. The deal in­cludes a base rate of $1.25 per gi­gagoule to cover the FFGRD’s costs with an­nual in­creases to ac­count for in­fla­tion. On that ba­sis, de­liv­er­ing 75,000 gi­gagoules would reap $93,750 per year, ac­cord­ing to a staff re­port.

For­tisBC is work­ing to reach a provin­cially-man­dated goal of se­cur­ing 15 per cent of its sup­ply from renewable sources by 2030. Di­vert­ing gas from Foothills into the For­tisBC sys­tem would re­duce green­house gas emis­sions by 3,500 to 5,700 tonnes per year, ac­cord­ing to the com­pany.

The tar­get date for get­ting the plant up and run­ning is De­cem­ber 2020.

CIT­I­ZEN FILE PHOTO

On Thurs­day the Fraser-Fort Ge­orge Re­gional Dis­trict board of di­rec­tors gave fi­nal ap­proval to a 20-year deal with For­tisBC to har­vest meth­ane gas from the landfill site, af­ter the pro­posal cleared the al­ter­na­tive ap­proval process.

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