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Environmental Assessment Certificate granted for Nahwitti Wind Farm Project


December 28, 2011
By Alyssa Dalton

December 28, 2011 – Nomis Power Corp. has received an environmental assessment certificate for the proposed Nahwitti Windfarm Project located on Vancouver Island. The business is currently under the management and direction of Rupert Peace Power Holdings, which is a privately held company.

The Environmental Assessment Office assessment report concluded the project is not expected to result in any significant adverse effects, based on the mitigation measures and conditions of the environmental assessment certificate.

The proposed $280-million project will be located 11 km north of Holberg, 45 km northwest of Port Hardy on Vancouver Island. Once completed, the project will produce up to 100 megawatts of wind energy, enough to provide energy for up to 30,000 homes. The proposed project will include up to 50 wind turbine generators, up to 30 km of new access roads and bridges, as well as upgrades to existing roads and bridges and up to 20 km of underground and aboveground transmission lines.

The proponent has reached an agreement with the proponents of the neighbouring wind energy project, Cape Scott Wind Farm Project, to share the transmission infrastructure connecting to the BC Hydro grid near Port Hardy.

The certificate contains design features mitigation measures and 104 conditions that form legally-binding requirements that Nomis Power Corporation must adhere to throughout the project, which include:

• A technical advisory committee to review bird and bat monitoring data results and develop adaptive management strategies.
• Implementation of a sediment and erosion control plan.
• Compliance with applicable Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) operational statements and DFO’s policy requiring compensation for any destruction of fish habitat.
• Implementation of an access management plan to ensure access is provided for the
public during all stages of construction and operation, except where it poses a safety
concern.
• Implementation of a traffic management plan to maintain safe access to the vicinity of the project during construction.

Local and provincial taxes generated over the 35-year lifespan of the project will be approximately $68-million including business licensing, lease, license and tenure fees, it said. The seven-month project construction period is expected to generate 180 person years of direct employment, and the operational phase of the project is expected to create 350 person years of full-time direct employment. During operations, the proposed project will avoid greenhouse gas emissions by approximately 165,000 tonnes annually, it added.

The Quatsino, Kwakiutl and Tlatlasikwala First Nations also participated in the environmental assessment process and the proponent was directed to consult with these First Nations.

Before the project can proceed, Nomis Power Corporation must still obtain the necessary provincial authorizations, an electricity purchase agreement with BC Hydro and potentially regulatory approval from federal responsible authorities.

CLICK HERE for more information on the environmental assessment certificate.