Aug 11, 2014
A new agreement with the B.C. government will allow the Squamish Nation to share provincial revenue from the Box Canyon Hydro Project.
The provincial revenue-sharing agreement is enabled by B.C.'s First Nations Clean Energy Business Fund, which aims to promote increased First Nations participation in the clean energy sector.
The Box Canyon Hydro Project will use stream flow from Box Canyon, Marty and Cascara creeks to feed a generator located above the confluence of Box Canyon and McNab creeks. The project received a BC Hydro energy purchasing agreement in 2010. Being developed by Elemental Energy Inc., the facility is expected to have a capacity of 15 megawatts and generate enough hydroelectricity to power approximately 4,500 homes.
Located on the west shore of Howe Sound, approximately 10.5 kilometres northeast of Port Mellon, the hydroelectric facility will be connected to the BC Hydro grid by a 2.8 kilometre, 138-kilovolt transmission line situated along sections of existing logging roads and cut blocks on the west side of McNab Creek.
Once the project is fully operational, the revenue to Squamish Nation is forecast to be potentially $70,699 per year over the life of the project.
The signing of the revenue-sharing agreement means that the provincial government has now reached 43 non-treaty agreements with First Nations since the BC Jobs Plan was launched in 2011, supporting economic opportunities for both First Nations and neighbouring communities.
John Rustad, Minister of Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation –
“These agreements help support the development of clean energy projects by First Nations and their partners. And by providing additional sources of clean, sustainable hydroelectric power these projects also benefit people in other communities throughout B.C.”
Chief Gibby Jacob, Squamish Nation –
“The Squamish Nation is pleased to see the responsible use of clean energy projects within its traditional territory. Revenue sharing is an important component in building relations and sharing in benefits derived from projects that lie within the Squamish Nation territory.”
Bill Bennett, Minister of Energy and Mines –
“First Nations and their partners continue to support the clean energy sector in their traditional territories. These agreements provide jobs, and show what can be accomplished through collaboration. By demonstrating leadership in the growing clean energy sector, First Nations are bringing economic benefits to their communities.”
Naomi Yamamoto, MLA for North Vancouver-Lonsdale −
“I’m very pleased to see this clean energy project move forward. It’s proof that we can work together to support economic development while remaining committed to protecting the environment.”
Jamie Houssian, principal, Elemental Energy Inc. –
“Squamish Nation has been an integral part of the Box Canyon Hydro Project since the beginning, working with us to address traditional land-use and environmental issues. We are excited about the construction phase of the project, which will bring social, economic and employment benefits for Squamish Nation, and we are hopeful that we will be able to work together on future projects.”
- British Columbia is the first province to share revenue from mining, forestry and other resources with First Nations. The B.C. government is committed to continue working in partnership with First Nations to stimulate investment, create jobs and provide economic benefits for First Nations and all British Columbians.
- The First Nations Clean Energy Business Fund provides money to build capacity in First Nations communities and invest in clean-energy infrastructure.
- Through the revenue-sharing agreements, participating First Nations will receive a share of water rentals and land rents charged by the Province for licences issued to the power developer for the life of a project.
- Since 2011, the provincial government has invested approximately $5.1 million in Capacity and Equity funding to support clean energy opportunities in 80 Aboriginal communities throughout B.C., including wind energy, biomass, run-of-river hydroelectric power and clean energy planning.
- The clean energy technology industry is one of the fastest growing industries in B.C., with more than 200 organizations, 68% of which were formed in the past decade.
For more information about the First Nations Clean Energy Business Fund, visit: www.gov.bc.ca/arr/economic/fncebf.html
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