Minister of Finance Joe Oliver has announced the Government of Canada’s support for the Kokish River Hydroelectric Project, through a P3 Canada Fund preferential loan of up to CAD$12.94 million.
This low-interest loan is the first of its kind in Canada and will help the Namgis First Nation to build equity in the 45 megawatt run-of-the-river hydroelectric development located within Namgis core territory.
The infrastructure is producing electricity for sale to BC Hydro under a 40-year Electricity Purchase Agreement. A portion of the revenue generated each year will be directed into a ‘Namgis Community Benefit Fund.
This is the first P3 Canada Fund project with a First Nation.
The project is owned and managed by Kwagis Power LP, a limited partnership of the Namgis First Nation and Brookfield Renewable Energy Partners, with Brookfield responsible for design, construction, financing, operations and maintenance, and Namgis a partner in decision making and monitoring.
By entering into this long-term partnership agreement, the First Nation has secured an active role and participation in a sustainable energy project in its ancestral lands, without undue risk to Namgis. The First Nation has the ability to monitor and evaluate the private partner’s performance.
Joe Oliver, Minister of Finance commented:
This innovative P3 project will allow the ‘Namgis First Nation to generate both energy and revenue while safeguarding North Vancouver Island’s ecosystem. It also means high-quality jobs will be available for people in the ‘Namgis community over the next 40 years.
Debra Hanuse, Namgis First Nation Chief added:
The Kokish River project embodies ‘Namgis values of respect for environment, culture and sound management. Through the P3 Canada Fund loan, we were able to establish a partnership with a corporation that shares our values. This partnership will enable our Nation to share in the economic benefits derived from our ancestral lands.