Harnessing Strong Working Relationships With Local Communities
Forrest Kerr will use the Iskut River and its tributaries to produce and deliver clean energy to the grid at Bob Quinn Lake, via the proposed Northwest Transmission Line (287 kV). This will be done by redirecting a portion of the Iskut River flow to an underground powerhouse, where turbines will generate electricity. Environmental considerations are a primary concern due to the run-of-river nature of this project, which ensures continual movement of water and materials downstream of the proposed tailrace discharge, in addition to a relatively small surface footprint. This project has received a Provincial Environmental Assessment Certificate, as well as the necessary Amendment that allows for the development of a 195 MW generation facility. AltaGas is now in the process of obtaining an incremental water license and other permits required for construction.
Alongside the strong working relationship that has been established with the Tahltan Nation, multiple communities stand to benefit from this project, including Terrace. With an expected cost of $700 million, Forrest Kerr is one of the largest infrastructure projects in the region, though it is already fully accessible by road. At its peak, the four-year construction project is expected to create over 400 full time jobs. AltaGas expects this project to be the first of three run-of-river power generation projects in the area.
This project is of high interest to investors who are aware of the government shift to reduce emissions, in particular, British Columbia’s goal to achieve energy self-sufficiency by 2016. Expected to come into service in 2014 alongside the completion of the 287 kV Northwest Transmission Line, Forrest Kerr will offset more than 450,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas equivalents annually.
The Terrace Advantage
The Forrest Kerr hydroelectric project is an important link that feeds Northwest Transmission Line, which supplies the Skeena Substation in Terrace. Terrace in turn provides a healthy supply of contractors, as well as efficient transportation alternatives for Forrest Kerr workers. Workers fly from Terrace to Bob Quinn before being helicoptered into Forrest Kerr. Forrest Kerr is one of three hydroelectric projects near Iskut River, making Terrace and the Northwest region a capital of green energy run-of-river projects in British Columbia.