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Barriers to renewable energy development in British Columbia’s remote communities

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This paper explores the challenges and proposes potential solutions to alternative energy development in British Columbia’s remote communities. I interviewed seven remote communities that are working toward, or who have completed, energy development projects in BC. The barriers and challenges identified by communities confirmed some of what has been noted in earlier international and domestic research. However interviewees highlighted issues that are uniquely tied to the British Columbia’s remote community energy (RCE) context. The specific challenges of working in very small resource-stretched communities are amplified by the numerous and uncoordinated programs that they must work with to meet their energy goals. Three proposals that mitigate some of the challenges identified by interviewees are proposed for consideration: 1. The existing suite of programs targeted to RCE development should be simplified and coordinated; 2. Greater effort should be put forth to facilitate communities who take on project development; 3. Investments should be targeted to training and community capacity development
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