Planning for the Future
Yukon government is working to ensure that Yukon’s electrical energy needs are met now and in the future, and that future generations can enjoy an energy legacy similar to that provided for the current generation by our legacy hydro assets (Whitehorse, Aishihik, Mayo and Fish Lake).
In 2013, Yukon government issued the Yukon Hydroelectric Power Planning Directive to Yukon Development Corporation (YDC). The Directive tasks YDC to plan one or more hydroelectric projects to ensure together with supporting renewables and to the minimum extent feasible, non-renewable sources of electrical power, an adequate and affordable supply of reliable and sustainable electrical power in Yukon.
Next Generation Hydro will involve many phases that could take 10 to 15 years to complete. Phase 1: Project Identification of Next Generation Hydro, is an 18-month initiative to review and assess potential hydro sites to determine which sites are most viable from a technical, environmental, social and economic perspective. As well, Phase 1: Project Identification will assess issues related to Yukon’s transmission system and lack of inter-jurisdictional connectivity.
While YDC explores potential hydro solutions to meet Yukon’s long-term energy needs (20 -50 years from now), Yukon Energy (YEC), ATCO Electric Yukon (AEY), Yukon government, First Nations and others will continue to advance various projects and opportunities in the short and medium term (0-20 years). YEC will continue its work as outlined in the YEC 20 Year Resource Plan. ATCO and YEC will continue to implement the Demand Side Management Plan. Businesses and First Nations can pursue projects via the existing Micro-generation program and the pending Independent Power Producer Policy regardless of the work being done on the Next Generation Hydro.
First Nations partners are important to Next Generation Hydro. YDC is working with First Nation governments across the Territory to determine how First Nations would like to be engaged.
Meeting the Needs of a Growing Yukon
Energy powers our communities from our homes to our hospitals, from our businesses to our schools. Next Generation Hydro will provide a legacy of reliable and affordable energy upon which we can build a thriving and vibrant Yukon.
Over 99.9% percent of Yukon’s on grid electrical generation comes from hydro and a small amount from wind with fossil fuel back up systems. If we are to maintain this standard we will need new hydro capacity and supportive renewables. Yukon’s future prosperity depends on it.
Yukon’s population could double in 50 years so there will be a need for more power to meet this anticipated residential and related commercial growth. Next Generation Hydro will be designed to meet this need and a portion of other energy markets presently using fossil fuels (space heating, industrial customers and off grid communities).
Yukoners need a lot of power in our cold dark winters. Any energy solution chosen must be able to provide reliable, affordable, flexible and environmentally responsible power, year round, but especially in winter during peak load.
The anticipated Next Generation Hydro solution will be one that provides enough energy for future needs.