West Kelowna  

BC Hydro will discuss redundancy vs. resiliency with council

Hydro to discuss solutions

BC Hydro officials will appear before West Kelowna council this week to provide yet another update on the progress of a second power source for the region.

The area, which includes the city, regional district lands, WFN, and Peachland south to Summerland, is the largest region in the province without a redundant power source.

In 2015, BC Hydro announced it would construct a secondary transmission line into the region. A second line from the Nicola Substation to Westbank was the leading alternative.

However, in the spring, BC Hydro officials told council it was also investigating resiliency of the current line to "minimize the risk of outages resulting from forest fires and geotechnical events."

Since the spring, BC Hydro says it has completed wildfire and geotechnical assessments, an environmental and archaeological assessment and held consultations with First Nations, governments and other stakeholders.

They are expected to provide those findings to council.

As for the current power line, hydro says there have been just four unplanned outages over the past 20 years. Those outages lasted a combined 16 hours with the longest being nine hours in duration.

BC Hydro expects to finish a detailed review of costs for a second transmission line and a complete assessment of the resiliency option by the end of the year.

It expects to have a decision on the next steps by early 2020.

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