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Hydroelectric Facilities, Kabinakagami River, Cochrane District


of an Environmental Assessment

Hydroelectric Facilities, Kabinakagami River, Cochrane District

Constance Lake 92, Réserve indienne; Constance Lake 92, Réserve indienne; Constance Lake 92, Réserve indienne; Constance Lake 92, Réserve indienne (ON)

December 14, 2011 — Fisheries and Oceans Canada and Transport Canada are required to ensure that a screening is conducted pursuant to the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act commencing on December 12, 2011 in relation to the project: Hydroelectric Facilities, Kabinakagami River, Cochrane District.

Northland Power Inc. and Constance Lake First Nation (CLFN) are proposing to construct and operate four (4) run-of-river hydroelectric facilities on the Kabinakagami River, north of Highway 11, approximately 30 km west of Hearst, Ontario. The four proposed sites include: Neeskah (Site 3); Peeshoo (Site 4); Wahpeestan (Site 5); and Wapoose (Site 6). Each site will consist of an earth-fill dam and a concrete overflow spillway (either 50 or 70 m long depending on the site), a powerhouse and intake and tailrace channels. The dams will create head ponds of 7 ha, 6 ha, 43 ha and 21 ha respectively. The powerhouse at each site will be located on the west bank of the river and sized to contain two pit-type turbine generating units each with a 3.25-MW capacity. The total installed capacity at each site will be 6.5 MW and the total installed capacity for all four sites combined will be 26 MW. Access to the project sites will be from Highway 11 and Highway 663 along Rogers Road and Pelican Road to Neeskah (Site 3). Two approximately 300 m sections of new access road will be developed to tie the existing Pelican Road into the Neeskah (Site 3) and Peeshoo (Site 4) facilities. A new approximately 8 km long access road will be required to connect Pelican Road to the Wahpeestan (Site 5) and Wapoose (Site 6) sites. All permanent and temporary access will be from the west bank of the river only. Preliminary transmission routing will consist of a single 44-kV line from Wapoose (Site 6) south along the new access road to Neeskah (Site 3) and then through a new corridor (approximately 22 km) to the existing substation at the Calstock Power Plant.

The scope of the project for the Kabinakagami River Hydroelectric Generating Stations has been identified as the physical works or activities associated with the construction, operation and maintenance of the proposed hydroelectric generating facilities as well as the decommissioning or abandonment (where applicable) of certain components of the development proposal. The RA(s) have determined that the scope of project will include the following components: The construction, operation, maintenance and decommissioning of new generating stations, dams and associated works at the Neeskah, Peeshoo, Wahpeeshan and Wapoose sites on the Kabinakagami River. The construction of new transmission lines and associated structures. The construction or alteration of portage routes either temporary during construction or permanent. The construction of new access roads and upgrades to existing access roads. Any other works or undertakings directly associated with the hydroelectric project including those that are temporary.

An environmental assessment is required in relation to the project because Fisheries and Oceans Canada may take action in relation to section 32 of the Fisheries Act and subsections 22(1), 22(2), 22(3) and 35(2) of the Fisheries Act and because Transport Canada may take action in relation to section 5 of the Navigable Waters Protection Act.

This project is also subject to the environmental assessment requirements of the Government of Ontario.

The Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency will act as the Federal Environmental Assessment Coordinator for this environmental assessment.

For further information on this environmental assessment, please contact:
DFO – CEA Registry Office -Central & Arctic Region – Ontario Area
P.O. Box 5050
867 Lakeshore Road
Burlington  ON  L7R 4A6
Telephone: 905-336-4508

and refer to Registry reference number 11-01-65456