A portfolio-building approach to creating alternatives in energy resource planning

BC Hydro 2006

Creating and evaluating a range of well-defined, internally coherent alternatives is central to good decision making. In public planning processes, having stakeholders participate in the process of alternative creation is important both for ensuring that a wide range of possible solutions to the problem are heard and explored, and for ensuring participant buy-in of the process. In very complex decisions, however, alternatives may require considerable effort to describe properly. In this case study, we examine how in its 2006 Integrated Electricity Plan (IEP) consultation process, BC Hydro overcame these difficulties through the use of a simple but effective spreadsheet tool.


BC Hydro 2003

Water use planning is a multi-stakeholder multi-objective planning process to examine re-allocations of water at hydroelectric facilities in British Columbia, Canada. At BC Hydro’s Bridge River facilities, 24 stakeholders representing the provincial treasury board, provincial and federal fish and wildlife regulators, local residents and aboriginal communities, participated in a structured decision process to examine alternative ways of operating the facilities to better balance power, fish, wildlife, water quality and recreation interests. Over a period of 18 months, participants set objectives and attributes, and identified and evaluated alternatives. Alternatives were screened by iteratively refining them to find joint gains and eliminate dominated alternatives. Structured Preference Assessment helped participants find common ground and a consensus on a new plan.


Air Quality Management Planning

This example involves the use of an influence diagram to help clarify means and ends and identify useful evaluation criteria for air quality management.


Key Ideas

On-ground success stories demonstrate the practical utility of SDM