Quebec Inuit off-grid community support hydro project to replace diesel electricity
The Inuit community of Inukjuak, located on the shores of northern Hudson's Bay, has voted in support of replacing dirty diesel-generated electricity with clean hydro power.
“For the last 5 years we have been working hard to develop the Innavik Hydro Project”, said Eric Atagotaaluk, president of the Pituvik Landholding Corporation (Pituvik). “Our people believe that clean energy is economic and environmentally-friendly, and Inuit leadership of the project can produce a range of social benefits for Inukjuak over the long term.”
The Innavik Project is planned as a 7.5-MW, run-of-river facility located 10 km from the community, on the Inukjuak River. The site is located on Category 1 lands that are managed by Pituvik, under the James Bay and Northern Quebec Agreement (JBNQA) on behalf of Inuit and other residents of Inukjuak.
The project will supply enough power to replace oil-based space and water heating. Financial support for the project so far has been provided by Pituvik, project partners, the Government of Canada (Indian and Northern Affairs Canada and Canada Economic Development for Quebec Regions) and the Kativik Regional Government.
Making the Innavik Project a reality requires an agreement with Hydro Quebec for the supply of power to the community. The provincial utility has the mandate to ensure that electricity supply is safe, reliable and cost-effective.
“Pituvik is very appreciative of Hydro Quebec's openness to consider the Innavik Project,” said Atagotaaluk. “The fact that hydro power is proven, and will reduce diesel fuel consumption and Greenhouse Gas Emissions (GHG), is totally supportive of the Quebec government's policies on northern development, climate change and sustainable development.”