Mineral industry welcomes funding to advance clean NWT hydropower, reduce costs

24 January 2019

(Yellowknife, NT – January 24, 2019) The NWT & Nunavut Chamber of Mines (Chamber) fully supports the forward looking actions announced today by the governments of Canada and the Northwest Territories (NWT) to grow access to safe, reliable, affordable, carbon-free hydropower. 
Today’s announcement by Canada’s Minister responsible for Northern Affairs, Dominic Leblanc, the Premier of the NWT, the Honourable Bob McLeod, and the Minister for Infrastructure and Trade and Industry, Minister Wally Schumann will fund start-up work including engineering and Indigenous engagement. It marks a necessary first step on the path to seeing the Taltson hydropower system expanded by 60 megawatts and linked to the Snare hydropower system, the territory’s other stranded power grid, and eventually to southern Canada. Successful completion of the Taltson-Snare link would provide new, more affordable and reliable power for Northern residents and businesses. 
“Historically, government relied on the economic power of the mining industry to build all of the NWT’s hydropower capabilities,” said Gary Vivian, President of the Chamber. “However, hydropower growth has not kept up with growing demands, and today our mines and many communities must rely on diesel power. A completed Taltson-Snare hydropower link with cheaper power would help mining developments in our territory. Today’s announcement is a small step on that path, and we look forward to seeing the Taltson link completed and providing much needed and essential renewable power for our residents, businesses and our industry.” 
By providing a clean alternative, Taltson power would reduce one of the industry’s largest costs – fossil fuels – and help to make the NWT’s minerals industry internationally competitive. In helping industry reduce their diesel power needs, Taltson power would also help meet investors’ growing desire for low carbon footprint projects. Taltson hydropower would also reduce the carbon footprint of the territory, helping it meet Canada’s greenhouse gas reduction goals. 
The Chamber looks forward to governments’ continued funding of the Taltson hydroelectricity expansion project to a timely completion, with affordable, green power flowing to industry, business and community customers. 

For more information on the NWT and Nunavut mining industries, please visit the website at www.miningnorth.com or contact Tom Hoefer, Executive Director at Tel: 867-873-5281 or email: executivedirector@miningnorth.com