Canada's Minister of Environment and Climate Change, Catherine McKenna, has referred an environmental assessment for the proposed 330-MW Amisk hydroelectric plant in Alberta to an independent review panel.
The Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency made the announcement this week after determining through a November solicitation whether the public believed such a review is necessary, citing "its potential to cause significant adverse environmental effects and concerns expressed by the public and Indigenous groups in relation to these effects."
The project is being developed by Calgary-based AHP Development Corp. along the Peace River and would include the construction and operation of a powerhouse, spillway, headpond, fish passage, boat passage, transmission line and substation, and all related infrastructure.
The review timeline established by the CEAA is as follows:
- A review panel is to be established 90 days from the date of the referral of the project;
- The review panel is to submit its report 480 days from the date of the establishment of the panel; and
- The federal minister's decision statement is to be issued 150 days from the date the review panel's report is submitted.
Amisk would be the fourth hydropower project on the Peace River. Already in existence along the river's British Columbia portion are the700-MW Peace Canyon and 2,730-MW G.M. Shrum facilities. Also in development on British Columbia's segment of the Peace River is the 1,100-MW Site C plant.
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