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BCUC Accepts BC Hydro’s Integrated Resource Plan

Press Release

March 6, 2024

VANCOUVER – Today, the British Columbia Utilities Commission (BCUC) accepted BC Hydro’s Updated 2021 Integrated Resource Plan (IRP), which anticipates BC Hydro’s load and resource needs and guides decisions on its electricity system over the next two decades.

In this plan, BC Hydro expects demand for electricity to increase and proposes a combination of energy efficiency programs (called demand-side management) and energy purchases from independent power producers, including both new contracts and renewal of existing contracts. The key priorities of BC Hydro’s plan are to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by focusing on non-polluting electricity sources, sustaining BC’s low electricity rates, limiting land and water impacts, contributing to BC’s reconciliation efforts with Indigenous peoples, and supporting the growth of BC’s economy.

BC Hydro first filed its IRP with the BCUC in December 2021. However, given the rapidly changing energy environment, BC Hydro later determined that the short-term actions in its original application would not be enough to meet the future electricity needs of its customers. As a result, BC Hydro submitted an Updated IRP in June 2023 that included changes to its load forecast, load scenarios, resource balances and short-term actions.

After a public review process, the BCUC determined that: BC Hydro’s IRP is in the public interest and aligns with the BC government’s energy objectives; BC Hydro provided sufficient information to meet the filing requirements of a long-term resource plan; and its supporting analysis for its near-term actions and range of long-term scenarios was reasonable. The BCUC also appreciated BC Hydro’s shift to a more flexible planning and resource development process.

In accepting BC Hydro’s Updated 2021 IRP, the BCUC agreed there is a need for BC Hydro to acquire approximately 3,000 gigawatt hours (GWh) of clean or renewable electricity from new facilities starting as early as 2029, and approximately 700 GWh of additional electricity from existing generation facilities prior to 2029. This represents an addition of more than 5% to BC Hydro’s existing energy generation resources.

BC Hydro has been directed to file its next IRP with the BCUC by October 31, 2025.

To learn more about the BCUC’s decision or BC Hydro’s 2021 IRP application, see our frequently asked questions, watch our decision summary video, or visit the proceeding webpage.


An IRP is the name used by BC Hydro and other energy utilities for their long-term resource plans. A long-term resource plan looks ahead at the next 20 years of energy demand. It is a guidebook for what, when, and how a utility will meet its customers’ evolving energy needs.

Long-term resource plans must include an estimate of demand, a plan to reduce demand, and a plan for energy purchases and facilities required to meet demand. Together these items outline the need for short-term actions, and a range of possible long-term scenarios that can happen over time.

The BCUC uses the IRP to help it review other BC Hydro applications, such as capital projects and energy purchase agreements. The IRP can assist the BCUC to be more efficient and effective in these future reviews.

About the BCUC

The BCUC is an independent regulatory body, responsible for regulating BC’s energy utilities, basic automobile insurance rates, and intra-provincial pipeline rates. It is the BCUC’s role to balance the interests of ratepayers and other stakeholders with the interests of the businesses it regulates. The BCUC carries out fair and transparent reviews of matters within its jurisdiction and considers public input where public interest is impacted. The BCUC is also the Administrator of BC’s Fuel Price Transparency Act and is responsible for collecting and publishing information about gasoline and diesel activities in BC, in an effort to promote competitiveness and public confidence in the fuel market.


Krissy Van Loon

Manager, Communications

Phone: 604.660.4727




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