Water Management

Glacier Power Ltd. - Dunvegan Hydroelectric Project

Reference #: NRCB Application #0602
Applicant: Glacier Power Ltd.
Status: Complete
Date decision issued: December 29, 2008

On October 27, 2006, Glacier Power Ltd. filed applications with the NRCB, Alberta Environment, and the Alberta Energy and Utilities Board for a proposed hydroelectric project. NRCB Application #0602 requests approval for a 100 megawatt run-of-river hydroelectric project on the Peace River near Dunvegan, Alberta. The proposed site is located on the Peace River approximately 2 km west of the Highway 2 bridge crossing at Dunvegan Historic Park.

The project description is set out in the application materials, which include an environmental impact assessment. To briefly describe the concept of this project: the powerhouse and spillway structure would span across the width of the river with water flowing through the turbines within the powerhouse to generate power - each of the 40 turbines would be able to generate 2.5 MW, hence the maximum electricity production of 100 MW. Other components of the project include its headpond, fishways, boat facilities, access roads and power line.

On December 21, 2007, a Joint Notice of Pre-Hearing Meeting and Joint Notice of Hearing was issued jointly by the EUB and NRCB. Following technical review of the applications and supplemental filings, AENV confirmed completeness of the Environmental Impact Assessment report on January 25, 2008.

Pre-Hearing submissions were filed by the January 22, 2008 deadline and the Pre-Hearing meeting was held on January 28, 2008 in Peace River. The NRCB and EUB issued a joint Pre-Hearing Meeting Report on February 28, 2008. Within its report, the Panel scheduled the hearing for April 22 - 25, 2008. In March, the Government of Canada advised that a rescheduling of the hearing would assist the fulfillment of federal legal requirements; as a result the hearing dates were postponed and all parties were notified by letter dated March 19, 2008.

The federal Minister of Environment subsequently referred the application to a review panel under the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act. The NRCB, AUC and CEAA then entered into an agreement for a joint federal-provincial panel to review Glacier Power's application. Orders in Council were issued, approving the appointments for each panel member. A news release was issued on July 16, 2008 advising all parties of the establishment of the new Joint panel. The Joint Review Panel determined the Applications materials to be complete and scheduled hearing dates and submission deadlines in the Notice of Hearing (link below).

The Joint Review Panel conducted a public hearing in Fairview, Alberta during the week of September 22-26, 2008. Hearing transcripts are available at http://www.tscript.com/ and also through the CEAA and AUC registries.

To link to CEAA's registry: http://www.ceaa-acee.gc.ca/050/index-eng.cfm.