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British Columbia enters historic agreement with St'át'imc

British Columbia and BC Hydro signed a final agreement with the St'át'imc and each of its 11 member bands that, once ratified, will address the longstanding grievances related to the construction and operation of BC Hydro's Bridge River system.

Once ratified, the agreement will provide the St'át'imc with compensation, mitigation of impacts and economic opportunities. The agreement will also provide BC Hydro and the B.C. government with operational certainty for the future.

The settlement will provide an initial sum payment and additional payments over time, the majority of which will be put into a long term trust. Each of the 11 member bands will also receive separate payments under their respective community agreements.

A ratification vote is tentatively scheduled by St'át'imc community members for the spring of 2011. BC Hydro and the St'át'imc have been negotiating an agreement since 1993.

In addition to financial compensation, the agreement provides funding for:

- Environmental initiatives to help restore fish, wildlife and vegetation

- A heritage plan to preserve and promote St'át'imc culture

- A relations agreement to assist in developing a long-term sustainable relationship

- An education and training component to build capacity within the communities

Nalcor, SNC-Lavalin sign agreement for Lower Churchill

Nalcor Energy issued a letter of intent for the engineering, procurement and construction management (EPCM) contract for components of Phase 1 of the Lower Churchill project to SNC-Lavalin.

A C$6.2 billion (US$6.1 billion) deal was reached to develop the proposed project.

The EPCM contract includes the Muskrat Falls Generating Facility and the Labrador Island Transmission Link. The contract does not include the Strait of Belle Isle subsea crossing or the Maritime Link.

Nalcor Energy will conduct the work related to the strait crossing, using a specialized contractor. Nalcor said the project includes a pair of generating facilities at Muskrat Falls and Gull Island, with a combined capacity of more than 3,000 MW. The Muskrat Falls facility, with a capacity of 824 MW, will be the first developed.

ABB to equip Canada hydropower project

ABB, a leading power and automation technology group, said it will supply mechanical, electrical and automation equipment for Yukon Energy Corporation's Mayo B hydroelectric project on the Mayo River in the Yukon.

Yukon Energy is undertaking the project to support the Yukon's growing demand for electricity by enhancing existing hydro infrastructure to increase the power that can be generated at the site from 5 MW to 15 MW, ABB said.

ABB is executing the project as part of a strategic alliance with Chongqing Yunhe Hydropower Group, one of the world's leading turbine suppliers in the small hydro market who will be providing the turbines and generators.

ABB will be supplying the excitation system, governor system and various mechanical and electrical auxiliaries for this equipment. In addition, ABB will be providing required site services to ensure the project is operational by the end of 2011.

Hydro stations in service ahead of schedule

Ontario Power Generation announced that all four hydro stations on the Upper Mattagami - Hound Chute hydro project are in service.

The hydro plants are in service nearly five months ahead of schedule and are on budget, OPG reported. The new stations make more efficient use of existing water, and will add enough clean, renewable electricity to power over 22,000 homes every year.

Sandy Falls Generating Station was the first plant to be completed as part of OPG's larger Upper Mattagami and Hound Chute Project. Lower Sturgeon and Wawaitin were declared in January. Hound Chute is the final station to be placed in service.

The work on Hound Chute also included the installation of a special water control structure, called an Obermeyer Weir.

The $300 million Upper Mattagami and Hound Chute Project includes redevelopment of the Sandy Falls, Wawaitin and Lower Sturgeon sites on the upper Mattagami River, and the Hound Chute site on the Montreal River.

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