The Next Generation Hydro Team hosted a –two-day gathering in Whitehorse Yukon with technical staff from First Nation Governments, Yukon government, non-profit organizations and businesses to review and discuss the release of the most recent technical work.  An evening public speaker event was held to share results and gather comments from the public. All together over 100 people participated in the conversation and discussed the future need for electricity in Yukon 20-50 years from today.

Technical consultants, Midgard Consulting Inc. presented two technical papers including the results of the Yukon Electrical Energy and Capacity Demand Forecast and the Site Screening Inventory (Part 2 of 2). Participants learned about the technical process as well as next steps. Comments and feedback were provided on the work presented.

Yukon’s Future Energy Needs

To meet the requirements of the Yukon Hydroelectric Power Planning Directive, YDC must evaluate the residential, commercial and industrial need for electricity in Yukon 20-50 years from today. To meet this criteria Midgard developed three scenarios for anticipated future energy and capacity demand [HYPERLINK TO ONE PAGER]. These scenarios (low, baseline and high) use historical trends to forecast the future 20-50 years from today. They take into account population growth and associated commercial growth as well as some mining development. [HYPERLINK TO SCENARIOS ONE PAGER]

Each scenario has as an associated energy and capacity need growing over time from 2035-2065. The results for each scenario are shown in the chart below.

2035 2045 2055 2065
Low Case Scenario 11 MW 17 MW 24 MW 31 MW
54 GWh 85 GWh 118 GWh 154 GWh
Baseline Case Scenario 21 MW 31 MW 42 MW 53 MW
103 GWh 157 GWh 211 GWh 265 GWh
High Case Scenario 36 MW 62 MW 95 MW 136 MW
180 GWh 311 GWh 476 GWh 682 GWh


For comparison, in the Baseline Case Scenario, this means within 20 years we could need a facility that is twice the size of the current Mayo Facility, and in 50 years a facility that is approximately twice the size of Whitehorse.

Short List

The technical team reviewed over 200 potential hydro sites across the Yukon with the goal of recommending a list of sites to review in depth for potential development. Previous studies were reviewed and projects were eliminated from consideration based on a range of factors including: proximity to a National Park, sites on the Yukon River, proximity to urban areas, and sites under 10MW. Sites were also removed if anticipated costs were fundamentally uneconomic.

Ten short listed sites remain as the only sites among 200 that met the criteria for further study. No site selection has been confirmed to date and much more work is required before a recommendation can be made. The technical team will continue to work on each site to understand the costs, socio-economic and environmental impacts and benefits, scalability, impacts to First Nations and social license for each site. This information will be compiled in a series of technical papers to be released in the fall of 2015. A workshop and speaking event will be held to gather comments on this work.

Next Steps

Stay tuned for a video recording of the public evening session. An interactive map of the Short List, quick guides and other materials can be found in the Resource Centre and Documents Page.

Follow us on Facebook  and follow us on Twitter @YukonHydro for updates. A series of spring speaking events will be launched in the coming weeks to provide yukoners with more opportunities to learn about the project and share their questions, comments and concerns.

Documents Released at Workshop: