Pattern Energy Group LP (Pattern Development) and Nigig Power Corporation have announced completion of the 300-megawatt (MW) Henvey Inlet Wind power facility in Ontario. Pattern Development and Nigig Power Corporation, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Henvey Inlet First Nation, are joint venture partners in the facility, which is located on Henvey Inlet First Nation Reserve No. 2, on the northeast shore of the Georgian Bay.
“This landmark project is a first on many fronts: largest single-phase wind facility in Canada, largest on-reserve wind installation in the country, and the first to develop a First Nation Environmental Stewardship Regime under the First Nations Lands Management Act,” said Mike Garland, CEO of Pattern Development. “It’s an honor to partner with Henvey Inlet First Nation on this historic project that created hundreds of local jobs and is now providing a strong new source of revenue for the First Nation. Renewables are helping to reduce the impact on our environment caused by climate change and this new facility is now generating clean, homegrown energy for 100,000 homes each year without any harmful emissions.”
“Now that construction is complete, we can begin to look forward to economic independence as a community,” said Greg Newton, CEO of Nigig Power Corporation. “Our youth will see an even brighter future from expanding health and education services along with increased infrastructure.”
“The wind farm’s completion marks a historic moment for Henvey Inlet First Nation,” said Chief Wayne McQuabbie of Henvey Inlet First Nation. “New infrastructure is under way in the First Nation as a result of this new facility and we see better days ahead. We’ve already increased our administrative staff and employees in the community and we look forward to ensuring a positive future for our upcoming generations, including economic spin offs and job security. As Anishinabek, we are proud to contribute to a green economy and are proactively moving forward in a time of climate change.”
Henvey Inlet Wind utilizes 87 Vestas 3.45 MW turbines with a 136-meter rotor diameter and 132-meter hub height. A 104-kilometer transmission line delivers electricity generated by the facility to the Ontario electricity grid. Henvey Inlet Wind has a 20-year Power Purchase Agreement with the Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) for 100 per cent of its production.
At the peak of construction, there were approximately 1,000 workers on site. Nearly one-third of construction workers were First Nations citizens. Now operational, Henvey Inlet Wind employs up to 20 permanent full-time staff and is expected to create demand for more than 100 ongoing indirect workers, including maintenance contractors.
The construction process generated approximately $25 million in direct economic activity for local First Nations businesses. Now operational, the facility is expected to generate more than C$10 million in income annually for Henvey Inlet First Nation.
Henvey Inlet Wind has made separate commitments to four key regions along the project’s 104 km transmission line through the establishment of a Community Benefits Program that will contribute $1 million to the following four municipalities over the first 20 years of facility operations: The Municipality of McDougall, Township of Seguin, Township of Carling, and Township of the Archipelago. The Community Benefits Program enables municipalities to fund projects that benefit residents, including: advancing community initiatives; enhancing ecological preservation, restoration or education; fostering individual and community health and wellness; and promoting the needs of youth development through education or recreation.
Henvey Inlet Wind was jointly developed and will continue to be jointly owned and operated by Pattern Development and Henvey Inlet First Nation. Pattern Development owns a 50 per cent interest in the project, and Nigig Power Corporation owns the other 50 per cent of the facility.