Innergex Renewable Energy Inc. has received environmental assessment (EA) certificates for the proposed Tretheway Creek, Shovel Creek and Big Silver Creek waterpower projects, said the British Columbia Environmental Assessment Office on Aug. 20.
Innergex Renewable Energy develops, owns and operates run-of-river hydroelectric facilities, wind farms and solar photovoltaic parks. Innergex has operations in Quebec, Ontario and British Columbia, as well as in Idaho. Currently, Innergex operates 18 run-of-river plans, nine of which are in B.C., the office said.
Environment Minister Terry Lake and Energy and Mines Minister Rich Coleman made the decision to grant the EA certificates after considering the review led by the Environmental Assessment Office. The proposed projects, totaling an estimated C$194m, will be located on Tretheway Creek, Shovel Creek and Big Silver Creek in the Harrison Lake area of the Fraser Valley Regional District. Once operational, the projects will produce up to 72 MW of run-of-river hydroelectric energy, enough to power 27,500 homes per year. The projects will include 3.25 kilometers of new and upgraded roads and a 47-kilometer, 138-kV transmission line from the existing Tipella Creek Waterpower Project to the Shovel Creek Waterpower project.
BC Hydro awarded Electricity Purchasing Agreement (EPA) for the projects in March 2010. Under the the EPAs, the commercial operational date is December 2015 for Tretheway Creek and November 2016 for Shovel Creek and Big Silver Creek.
Before the project can proceed, Innergex Renewable Energy must obtain the necessary provincial and federal licenses, leases and other approvals, the office noted.