BC Transmission Corp plans $5.1 billion investment in electricity system upgrades

    VANCOUVER, Jan. 10 /CNW/ - BC Transmission Corporation (BCTC) has filed
its Ten Year Capital Plan with the BC Utilities Commission, outlining
$5.1 billion in expenditures designed to meet the increased clean electricity
demands of British Columbia's growing economy.
    "BCTC is planning for the future by ensuring British Columbia's
electricity system has the necessary capacity to meet the needs of our growing
population," said Jane Peverett, BCTC President and CEO. "We are working to
improve reliability, reinforce existing assets, and connect new sources of
green energy to the grid."
    The new capital plan also outlines measures BCTC will take to support key
objectives of The BC Energy Plan: A Vision for Clean Energy Leadership,
including innovation and enhanced reliability. Key actions include enabling
integration of clean and renewable energy, measures to implement new
technologies to improve the grid, including system modernization, replacement
of existing assets, and innovative solutions to reduce line losses.
    "We're looking across our network to find places where new and innovative
solutions can be used to modernize the provincial grid," said Peverett. "For
example, the new Interior to Lower Mainland power line will include technology
improvements that will save enough electricity to supply 30,000 to 50,000
homes. We will also have a new state of the art energy management system
installed January 2008 that will enable us to run the grid to maximum
efficiency, increasing service to customers."
    BCTC's F2009 - F2018 Capital Plan details capital investment for the next
year and provides an outlook of potential investments for the next ten years.
The plan is filed for approval with the BC Utilities Commission, the body
responsible for regulating the province's utilities on behalf of ratepayers.
    To learn more about the capital plan and our commitment to ensuring
British Columbians continue to benefit from a clean, efficient and reliable
supply of electricity, visit www.bctc.com.

    BCTC is the Crown corporation that plans, operates and maintains the
province's publicly owned electrical transmission system.

    BC Transmission Corporation
    January 10, 2008

                         F2009 - F2018 CAPITAL PLAN

    Quick Facts: Financials

    $5.1 billion - total capital plan expenditures over ten years:

      -  $3.4 billion - growth expenditures
      -  $1.6 billion - sustaining expenditures
      -  $0.1 billion - operational expenditures

    Highlights of BCTC's Ten Year Capital Plan

    1.  Expanding and enhancing BC's electricity infrastructure to meet the
        needs of a dynamic growing province:
        -  Demand for electricity is forecast to increase between 25 - 45%
           over the next 20 years.
        -  BCTC has identified several major projects that are required to
           ensure the continued delivery of safe, reliable and cost-effective
           electricity around the province including:
           -  Interior to Lower Mainland Transmission Project - $602 million
              - In service 2014
           -  Vancouver Island Transmission Reinforcement Project
              - $287 million - In service 2008
        -  BCTC is also investing in new infrastructure to meet the needs of
           growing communities throughout British Columbia. Major regional
           investments include:
           -  Central Vancouver Island Project - $84 million - In
              service 2010
           -  Mount Pleasant Area Reinforcement (Vancouver) - $150 million -
              In service 2011
           -  Southern Interior Reinforcement Projects - over $200 million -
              To reinforce a number of radial transmission lines serving
              communities in the southern interior.

    2.  Enabling the integration of clean and renewable energy
        -  Over the next 10 years, BCTC estimates that it will invest over
           $1 billion to connect new, clean and renewable generation
           resources in the province, including the interconnection of the
           first wind power projects in the province.

    3.  Investing in innovation and new digital technologies to extend the
        life and enhance the capacity of BC's aging transmission system
        -  The majority of the B.C. transmission system was built between
           1960 and 1970 and is now between 40 and 50 years old. As
           equipment ages and deteriorates, failure rates are expected to
           rise. BCTC has developed a long-term program to strategically
           replace these assets before they fail to maintain the reliability
           and safety of the transmission system.
        -  BCTC is replacing out-dated equipment with new state of the art
           technology - improving the reliability and performance of the
           system while reducing maintenance costs. Two examples include:
           -  Replacement of aging electromechanical relays on the
              transmission system with new digital relays with fault
              identification technology, system disturbance analysis
              capability, self diagnostics and alarming.
           -  Replacement of conventional aircraft warning markers on
              critical transmission crossings with the low voltage passive
              Obstacle Collision Avoidance System (OCAS). OCAS saves energy
              as it is powered by the sun. The system includes self
              diagnostics, which will generate an alarm when in need of

For further information:

For further information: MEDIA CONTACT: Chris Rathbone, (604) 699-7445,
email: chris.rathbone@bctc.com, www.bctc.com

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