​BC Hydro announces $20-million fund for agricultural impacts of Site C



BC Hydro has announced a 20-million dollar fund to assist agricultural production in the Peace Region.

In a press release issued yesterday, the crown corporation says it recognizes the effects of its Site C project on the agricultural production in the area and hopes the fund will help make up for the impact.

Local agricultural organizations say that land loss because of Site C is affecting production.

“What we do know is we have lost some agricultural land, and this will help mitigate the impacts of that by looking at alternate production methods and alternate use of the lands around it,” said Rick Kantz, President of BC Grain Producers Association.

The Peace Agricultural Compensation Fund Board will oversee the money.

The board consists of 10 members – representatives from five regional agricultural organizations, the Peace River Regional District, and agricultural producers.

Kantz says BC Hydro’s contribution is critical.

“We need to continue creating food. So, if we’re going to take away some land base from that, how are we going to provide or expand agriculture to continue producing food for a growing population? The population has to continue to eat, that’s why it’s so important that we look after agriculture,” said Kantz.

Within the next month, the board will hire a fund manager, then BC Hydro will transfer the funds, and from there, it will get invested.

Kantz says they probably won’t see money flowing out of it until late 2019.

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