THUNDER BAY – BUSINESS – Wataynikaneyap Power LP (Wataynikaneyap Power) announced today that the Ontario Energy Board (“OEB”) has approved the Company’s leave to construct (“LTC”) application, which was filed in June 2018.
“The OEB’s approval authorizes Wataynikaneyap Power to construct and operate the Wataynikaneyap Power Transmission Project and deliver upon our commitment to bring reliable, sustainable and clean power to our First Nations communities in Northern Ontario,” said Margaret Kenequanash, CEO of Wataynikaneyap Power. “We successfully connected Pikangikum to the provincial energy grid in December 2018 and are looking forward to connecting the rest of the First Nation communities who still rely on expensive, environmentally-unfriendly diesel generators for power.”
The Wataynikaneyap Power Transmission Project is an unprecedented First Nations-led project to build approximately 1,800 kilometres of transmission lines in Northwestern Ontario to connect remote First Nations communities to the Ontario power grid.
The project will reinforce the existing transmission grid to Pickle Lake and will expand grid service north of Pickle Lake and Red Lake to ultimately connect 17 First Nations communities.
A leave to construct application is an OEB requirement under Section 92 of the OEB Act, for a transmission company proposing to build an electricity transmission line in Ontario. The application outlines details of the project, including timing, design and costs. Wataynikaneyap Power is now focused on the next significant steps in the Project’s development before construction, including Environmental Assessment approvals, choosing an Engineering, Procurement, Construction (EPC) proponent(s) for Phase 1 & 2 of the Project and finalizing financing.
“The Wataynikaneyap Project team continues to reach major milestones in the development process and this LTC approval is another example of our success. We are honoured to be working with our 24 First Nations partners in making this project, and access to clean, reliable energy, a reality for thousands of First Nation residents in Northern Ontario,” said Barry Perry, President and CEO of Fortis Inc.
About Wataynikaneyap Power
Wataynikaneyap Power is a licensed transmission company, regulated by the Ontario Energy Board, and majority-owned by a partnership of 24 First Nation communities in partnership with private investors led by Fortis Inc.
To connect remote First Nations communities to the electrical grid, Wataynikaneyap Power will develop, manage construction, and operate approximately 1,800 kilometres of transmission lines in northwestern Ontario.
For further information, please visit www.wataypower.ca, or www.fortisinc.com.