The pair of 135 megawatt run of river sites would require diverting some of the flow from the Athabasca River through tunnels and turbines
CALGARY—The Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency says it will look at the potential impacts of two renewable power projects that Innergex Renewable Energy Inc. has proposed to build on the Athabasca River.
The Longueuil, Que.-based company wants to build two 135-megawatt hydroelectric projects called Sundog and Pelican roughly 130 and 180 kilometres upstream of Fort McMurray, Alta.
The run-of-river projects, which involve diverting some of the flow of the river through a tunnel and turbine, require spillways to increase the water level in the river as well as powerhouses, embankments, boat launches and other infrastructure, but do not involve a full dam or reservoir.
The projects southwest of the oilsands heartland would also require new 240 kilovolt transmission lines and access roads.
The federal agency has invited the public and Indigenous groups to comment by Feb. 9 on what should be examined during the assessment, which it will take into consideration when finalizing the guidelines for assessments of both projects.
Innergex runs renewable energy operations in Quebec, Ontario and British Columbia as well as in France and the U.S., and announced last October that it would be taking over Alterra Power Corp. in a $1.1-billion cash and share deal.