North Island wind power development is no longer becalmed.
The Nomis Power Corporation’s much delayed project recently received an environmental assessment certificate for the proposed Cape Scott Wind farm Project, which will allow construction to begin at last.
This $280 million project will be located 11-kilometres north of Holberg and 45-kilometres northwest of Port Hardy, and will consist of up to 50 wind turbines that will generate up to 100 megawatts of electricity, enough to power up to 30,000 homes.
Environment Minister Terry Lake and Energy and Mines Minister Rich Coleman made the decision to grant the environmental assessment certificate after considering the review led by B.C.’s Environmental Assessment Office.
Wind energy generated at the plant will avoid approximately 165,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions annually.
Provincial environmental assessment, which also consulted with local First Nations, concluded that the proposed project poses no significant threat to the natural environment.
However, the certificate specifies certain regulations and responsibilities that the company must abide by to prevent or minimize environmental impact.
Examples include bird and bat monitoring and adoption of a soil and erosion control plan.
Based on the information provided to date by the proponent, the project did not require a federal environmental assessment under the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act. A federal environmental assessment may be required in the future as detailed design plans become available.
It’s expected local and provincial taxes generated over the 35-year lifespan of the project will be approximately $68-million including business licensing, lease, licence and tenure fees.
The seven-month project construction period is expected to generate 180 person years of direct employment, and the operational phase of the project is expected to create 350 person years of full-time, direct employment.