BC Hydro has seen a sharp decline in electricity demand since the Coronavirus outbreak was officially declared a pandemic on March 11.

According to a report, the utility giant has seen electricity demand plummet by ten percent in the last two months and demand may drop by as much as 12 percent or more by April of next year.

That’s more than double the decline brought on by the recession in 2008.

The report looks at how the decrease in power demand, combined with high inflows from spring runoff and a limited export market has created a large surplus in BC Hydro’s system.

What this means is that there is the potential for reservoirs to reach capacity, increasing the risk of flooding, impacts on the environment, and the utility’s infrastructure.

The majority of the Independent Power Producers BC Hydro has agreements with are producing the most energy this time of year, accounting for about 29 percent of the utilities’ total power generation.