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City applauds $4.1 million energy funding commitment

April 3, 2009
News Release

Quesnel, B.C. – Quesnel City Council is applauding a $4.1 million commitment made by the provincial government’s Innovative Clean Energy (ICE)  fund to support the Quesnel Community and Economic Development Corporation’s (QCEDC’s) work on a Community Heat and Electricity System. Premier Gordon Campbell made the announcement earlier today at a bio-energy plant in Burnaby. The commitment supports the first step towards a $13.4 million system that would make use of existing industrial heat sources to generate electricity and provide heat for multiple downtown facilities.

“This is very exciting news for the City of Quesnel. We know there are many opportunities for us to maximize the potential of our resource base,” said Mayor Mary Sjostrom.  “This project could eventually provide us not only with a green, environmentally responsible source of heat and power, but could be a significant source of revenue for the City that is not reliant on property taxes. We’re supportive of green and innovative energy projects and look forward to seeing this one develop.”

The City of Quesnel began work on this initiative in 2005 by conducting feasibility work. QCEDC obtained support for more detailed feasibility work from Western Economic Diversification Canada and BC Hydro in 2007, which culminated in the ICE funding opportunity.

“We are very pleased with this announcement and the potential it holds for Quesnel,” said QCEDC Board Chair Brian Black. “We’re committed as a Board to the continued development of a sustainable and diverse economy in Quesnel. By bringing together multiple partners we believe there are many more opportunities for advancement and growth.”

QCEDC will now work on securing additional financing for the project, and industrial and other partners to develop and operate it.  If the project proceeds as planned, the potential exists for the City to reduce operational costs for it and other major businesses and institutions, reduce CO2 emissions, add infrastructure to attract other firms, meet greenhouse gas reduction targets and gain national or even international recognition for clean energy innovation.

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