The Government of the Northwest Territories (GNWT) has started construction of the Inuvik Wind Project.
The project is a key initiative under the 2030 Energy Strategy and will reduce diesel consumption in the NWT’s largest off-grid community by 30 percent – offsetting approximately three million litres of diesel per year. The project will reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 6,000 tonnes per year and will provide economic opportunities to Northern businesses during the construction phase.
“As the GNWT takes real action against climate change and advances ways to increase the use of alternative and renewable energy in the NWT, reaching the construction phase of the Inuvik Wind Project is an important milestone for this government and our partners – the Gwich’in Tribal Council and the Government of Canada,” said Diane Archie, Minister of Infrastructure. “Not only will the project reduce the use of diesel to generate electricity, which is one of the strategic objectives of the 2030 Energy Strategy, it will assist the NWT in reaching its greenhouse gas emissions reduction target and will bring economic benefits to the Beaufort-Delta region.”
The Inuvik Wind Project includes the installation of a single 3.5-megawatt wind turbine and small battery storage system, a six-kilometre access road and a distribution line connecting to existing lines near Inuvik’s Mike Zubko Airport.
Construction of the access road began in January. The contract for this work was awarded to Northland Builders, a Gwich’in business.
“We are pleased to see the Inuvik Wind Project enter into the next phase and the utilization of Gwich’in businesses for its construction,” added Ken Kyikavichik, Grand Chief, Gwich’in Tribal Council. “The reduction in greenhouse gases and associated carbon footprint from fossil fuel power generation in the Beaufort-Delta can only assist in combatting global climate change – the effects of which we face on a daily basis. The Gwich’in Tribal Council and our businesses look forward to continue working with the Northwest Territories Energy Corporation, the Governments of the NWT and Canada, to deliver this sustainable long-term solution to our energy requirements in the Gwich’in Settlement Area and the Town of Inuvik for generations to come.”
In 2018, it became the first project in the NWT approved for funding under the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program. The Government of Canada has committed up to $30 million towards the project.
- Reducing 6,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions per year is the equivalent of removing about 1,500 cars from the road.
- One of the 2030 Energy Strategy’s strategic objectives is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from electricity generation in diesel communities by 25% below average historical levels by 2030.
- The project is being delivered by NT Energy, a sister company of the Northwest Territories Power Corporation (NTPC) which focuses on renewable and low carbon energy projects and business development opportunities for the North.