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Federal government approves British Columbia's 45-MW Kokish River hydroelectric plant

VANCOUVER, British Columbia, Canada 5/8/12 (PennWell) -- British Columbia's controversial 45-MW Kokish River hydropower project has gotten an official go-ahead from Canada's Department of Fisheries and Oceans.

The US$192 million project was awarded an environmental assessment certificate by the province's Ministry of Environment in December 2011, though it had yet to receive DFO approval.

Project developers Brookfield Renewable Power Inc. and 'Nagamis First Nation told Canadian sources that they would begin construction -- even without federal approval -- before DFO announced it would approve the plan, pending modifications to the initial water release regime.

DFO says the project must change its release schedule to maintain "natural water flows in the river during the low summer flows and early fall salmon migration period."

The department has declared the Kokis River a "high-value river" due to its population of wild salmon, coastal cutthroat trout, eulachon and endangered runs of summer and winter steelhead.

Also in Canada, software developer Aquamarine Infomatics recently announced the addition of BC Hydro to its list of clients.

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