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Hydro One releases evaluation of the Neighbours on the Line alternative route for the Waasigan Transmission Line

by ahnationtalk on April 19, 2023964 Views

Hydro One releases evaluation of the Neighbours on the Line alternative route for the Waasigan Transmission Line

Hydro One remains committed to working with the community to alter the route to keep residents in their homes and, where possible, address individual property concerns

THUNDER BAY, April 18, 2023 – Today, Hydro One released its analysis of an alternate route proposed by the Neighbours on the Line (NOTL) community group for its Waasigan Transmission Line project. The evaluation concluded the proposed route, which is 22 per cent longer than the current route being studied in the environmental assessment, would result in a larger disturbance to vegetation and wetlands, waterways and wildlife habitats. The NOTL’s proposed route also crosses a larger area of land where Indigenous communities exercise their Aboriginal and treaty rights.

Hydro One is working to identify a route that balances Indigenous values, natural environment, socio-economic environment, and technical and cost considerations. The company has reaffirmed its commitment to continue working with the Kaministiquia community to find route refinements and ensure those landowners who have displacement concerns can remain in their homes.

“Local community feedback is integral to infrastructure development. We want local residents to know that we will continue to listen to your concerns and find solutions where possible to refine the route of the transmission line,” said Sonny Karunakaran, Director, Project Delivery, Hydro One. “There were positive aspects of the proposed NOTL route, however it’s important that we balance the natural environment, Indigenous, socio-economic and technical and cost factors.”

The company also confirmed that it listened to concerns of the Shebandowan community and has proposed route changes that responds to their feedback.

“It’s never easy to find out that your community is the one that is impacted, however Hydro One was open to working with our residents and found ways to make changes to the route that we could be supportive of,” said Jack Christy, from the Shebandowan community.

“The Northwest is uniquely positioned to propel economic growth and attract new opportunities with the valuable minerals our region has to offer,” said Wendy Landry, President, Northern Ontario Municipal Association. “The Waasigan Transmission Line will unlock prosperity for multiple generations. We will continue to work together with Hydro One, governments and all communities to drive value to our region through this project and encourage all other stakeholders to do the same.”

Quick Facts:

  • To evaluate the NOTL proposed route, Hydro One applied the same categories used to determine the preliminary preferred route announced in January.
  • The NOTL proposed route would go north of Thunder Bay and around Lac des Mille Lacs to Atikokan with the goal of avoiding private land.
  • Hydro One’s Comprehensive Environmental Assessment process, conducted in accordance with Ontario’s Environmental Assessment Act, equally weighs and considers the natural environment, socio-economic environment, Indigenous values, as well as technical and cost factors.
  • The Waasigan Transmission Line is being developed to meet growing electricity needs in northwest Ontario. As part of its transmission planning responsibilities, the Independent Electricity System Operator has requested Phase 1 of the project, the portion of the project from Shuniah to Atikokan, to be in-service as close to the end of 2025 as possible.
  • The Waasigan Transmission Line will bolster capacity in northwest Ontario by adding 350 megawatts of capacity to the region with a new double-circuit 230 kilovolt (kV) transmission line between Lakehead Transmission Station (TS) in the Municipality of Shuniah and Mackenzie TS in the Town of Atikokan, and a new single-circuit 230 kV transmission line between Mackenzie TS and Dryden TS in the City of Dryden.
  • Hydro One’s 50-50 equity partnership model will be applied to the Waasigan Transmission Line project, offering nine First Nations a 50 per cent equity stake in the project including Lac des Mille Lacs First Nation (LDMLFN) and eight First Nation communities represented by Gwayakocchigewin LP (GLP). The GLP communities include Wabigoon Lake Ojibway Nation, Eagle Lake First Nation, Lac La Croix First Nation, Fort William First Nation, Seine River First Nation, Lac Seul First Nation, Nigigoonsiminikaaning First Nation, and the Ojibway Nation of Saugeen.

To learn more about the project, and provide feedback, please visit HydroOne.com/Waasigan.

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Hydro One Limited (TSX: H)

Hydro One Limited, through its wholly-owned subsidiaries, is Ontario’s largest electricity transmission and distribution provider with approximately 1.5 million valued customers, approximately $31.5 billion in assets as at December 31, 2022, and annual revenues in 2022 of approximately $7.8 billion.

Our team of approximately 9,300 skilled and dedicated employees proudly build and maintain a safe and reliable electricity system which is essential to supporting strong and successful communities. In 2022, Hydro One invested approximately $2.1 billion in its transmission and distribution networks, and supported the economy through buying approximately $1.9 billion of goods and services.

We are committed to the communities where we live and work through community investment, sustainability and diversity initiatives. We are designated as a Sustainable Electricity Leader™ by Electricity Canada.

Hydro One Limited’s common shares are listed on the TSX and certain of Hydro One Inc.’s medium term notes are listed on the NYSE. Additional information can be accessed at www.hydroone.com, www.sedar.com or www.sec.gov.

For further information: Media can contact Hydro One Media Relations 24 hours a day at 1-877-506-7584 (toll-free in Ontario only) or 416-345-6868.

NT5

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