The proposed project would make all this too dangerous to continue …

Sep 282015

Due to the many dangers that the proposed hydro-electric generating station at the Bala falls would create, for many years we have been asking that the risks to in-water recreation be assessed by a competent authority, but this has not happened.

So we commissioned the Lifesaving Society, who do have this expertise, to study and report on the situation. You can read their Aquatic Safety Audit report here. As noted in our summarizing cover letter:

  1. The report was written by an independent third-party with expertise in outdoor in-water recreation, and with understanding of the context for the concern and of the local situation.
  2. Relevant quotes from the report include (emphasis added):
    • “The proposed installation of a hydroelectric generating station adjacent the Bala North Falls dam would create extreme new dangers, to both upstream and downstream in-water recreation.”

    • “In whole, this development would create an unusually and extremely dangerous situation, and therefore requires a commensurate level of planning to be presented to agencies, stakeholders, and the public. This process should be started and completed before any construction proceeds, to both ensure it would be practical to implement, and so that any required changes could be incorporated into the design of the proposed station.”
  3. Our summary is that:
    • The expert input is that before any construction is allowed to commence, the proponent for the proposed hydro-electric generating station at the Bala falls must be required to provide plans showing both how their proposed generating station could be operated safely and that it would be practical to implement these plans.
    • The proponent’s current plans are unacceptably dangerous.
    • Therefore, the proponent’s current proposal must be stopped until they can show the public that it could be operated safely.


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