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Minister Vandal announces federal funding to the Kivalliq Hydro-Fibre Link that aims to bring clean energy, broadband service to the Kivalliq region of Nunavut

Press Release

From: Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada

November 8, 2022

A transformative Inuit-led project is planning to deliver renewable energy and high-speed Internet to remote northern communities in the Kivalliq region of Nunavut. The Kivalliq Hydro-Fibre Link project will help advance Canada’s transition to a low carbon future while protecting the land and water, unlocking economic opportunities in the region and improving the health and wellbeing of Nunavummiut.

The Honourable Dan Vandal, Minister of Northern Affairs, CanNor and PrairiesCan, announced today that the Kivalliq Hydro-Fibre Link project is receiving $7 million in funding from Canada’s Northern REACHE Program to help advance the project. The federal government remains committed to supporting Inuit in further advancing this nation-building green infrastructure project. This funding builds on previous Government of Canada funding of $4.6 million for technical and feasibility assessments through the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency (CanNor). The Canadian Infrastructure Bank is also providing important advisory services in support of the project’s development activities.

Led by Nukik Corporation, the project proposes a new 1,200-kilometre overhead hydroelectric transmission line between the Gillam, Manitoba area and the Kivalliq region that will help five communities and two gold mines transition away from polluting and costly diesel. This clean energy initiative will improve local air quality, reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 371,000 metric tons annually and displace 138 million litres of fuel per year, enable Nunavut to meet its 2030 GHG emissions reduction target, and save the region money.

Many communities in the North continue to rely on diesel for electricity and heat, which is costly, polluting, and contributes to climate change. Northern REACHE supports Indigenous and northern communities’ transition away from diesel fuel for electricity and heating by supporting and funding for renewable energy technologies such as solar, wind, hydroelectricity and biomass heating.

As Nunavut’s first-ever infrastructure link to the rest of Canada, the project will also create access to affordable broadband service for 10,000 residents; modernize the region’s telecommunications systems; and enable future economic development, including e-business, tele-healthcare and educational opportunities. The project will also create jobs from its construction and operation and be the catalyst of generational socio-economic opportunities for the region once completed in 2030, contributing $3.2 billion to Canada’s GDP during construction and generating an estimated $8 billion in revenues over 50 years.

In the recent 2022 Fall Economic Statement, the Government of Canada continues to move forward in making life more affordable for Canadians and taking bold climate action to lower energy costs and reduce pollution. This includes launching the new Canada Growth Fund, bringing in new investments required to reduce our emissions and grow our economy. The Government of Canada will also introduce major investment tax credits for clean technologies and clean hydrogen that will help create good jobs and make Canada a leader in the net-zero transition.

Quotes

“The legacy of diesel infrastructure in our communities harms our environment and impacts our lands, wildlife, and waters each and every day. We are now at a pivotal moment where together with our federal partners, we can demonstrate our commitment to safeguarding habitat and arctic waters while tackling a major infrastructure deficit and lack of equal socio-economic opportunities for Inuit and Nunavummiut. Nunavut and the Kivalliq region have a legitimate right to become grid-connected and access the same prosperous future as all other Canadians.”

Kono Tattuinee
President of the Kivalliq Inuit Association

“Nunavut is Canada’s largest territory and does not have any infrastructure connecting it to the rest of the country. The Kivalliq Hydro-Fibre Link is a nation-building inter-tie project that directly and tangibly answers national and regional commitments to take climate action, walk the talk on reconciliation and build a true, resilient pan-Canadian grid that will enable Nunavut to, one day, send renewable electricity back to the North American network, contributing to Canada’s 2050 net-zero objective. The federal government has been a true partner and we are excited for the next stage of the project’s development.”

Anne-Raphaëlle Audouin
CEO of Nukik Corporation

“Our government is proud to support Indigenous-led clean energy projects across the North and Arctic, which is why we are making significant new investments in cleaner energy generation in the Fall Economic Statement. The Kivalliq Hydro-Fibre Link aspires to bring clean, secure and affordable energy and broadband Internet service to the Kivalliq region. Transformational initiatives like this one will help Canada meet its climate objectives and more importantly, serve as the foundation for resilient and thriving northern communities, all while saving them money on polluting diesel. This is only possible through the leadership and determination of organizations such as the Kivalliq Inuit Association, Sakku Investments and Nukik Corporation.”

The Honourable Dan Vandal, P.C., M.P.
Minister of Northern Affairs, CanNor, and PrairiesCan

Quick facts

  • Prior to today’s announcement, the Government of Canada provided $4.6 million in funding to support the planning of the Kivalliq Hydro-Fibre Link for technical and feasibility assessments through the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency (CanNor). The latest funding arrangement for $2.99 million expires March 31, 2023.
  • Canada’s Strengthened Climate Plan invested $300 million over five years to ensure that rural, remote and Indigenous communities that currently rely on diesel have the opportunity to be powered by clean, reliable energy by 2030.
  • Building on this investment, Budget 2021 provided $40.4 million over three years, starting in 2021–22, to support the feasibility and planning of hydroelectricity and grid interconnection projects in the North to help communities transition to clean energy and reduce their reliance on diesel.
  • Many communities in the North continue to rely on diesel for electricity and heat, which is costly, polluting, and contributes to climate change.
  • Northern REACHE supports Indigenous and northern communities’ transition away from diesel fuel for electricity and heating by supporting and funding for renewable energy technologies such as solar, wind, hydroelectricity, and biomass heating.
  • To date, the Northern REACHE Program has invested more than $39 million in 161 projects across the North.
  • Supporting Indigenous leadership and co-developing solutions to reduce reliance on fossil fuels in Northern communities for First Nations, Inuit and Métis is central to advancing the reconciliation journey and self-determination.
  • Launched in 2019, Canada’s Arctic and Northern Policy Framework, developed with Indigenous representatives and six territorial and provincial governments, is a long-term vision for the Arctic and the North to reflect the priorities and perspectives of Arctic and Northern people.
  • The federal government’s fiscal anchor—the unwinding of COVID-19-related deficits and reducing the federal debt-to-GDP ratio over the medium term—remains unchanged. The federal debt-to-GDP ratio is projected to continuously decline and is on a steeper downward track than projected in Budget 2022.
  • New measures proposed in the 2022 Fall Economic Statement include: Investing in Jobs, Growth, and an Economy That Works for Everyone:
    • Launching the new Canada Growth Fund, which will help bring to Canada the billions of dollars in new private investment required to reduce our emissions, grow our economy, and create good jobs.
    • Introducing major investment tax credits for clean technologies and clean hydrogen that will help create good jobs and make Canada a leader in the net-zero transition, as well as incentivizing higher wages for workers by increasing the credit level when certain labour protections are met.
    • Implementing a new tax on share buybacks by public corporations in Canada.
    • Creating the Sustainable Jobs Training Centre and investing in a new sustainable jobs stream of the Union Training and Innovation Program to equip workers with the skills required for the good jobs of today and the future.

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Associated links

Contacts

For more information, media may contact:

Kyle Allen
Press Secretary and Communications Advisor
Office of the Honourable Dan Vandal
Minister of Northern Affairs, CanNor, and PrairiesCan
[email protected]

Media Relations
Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada
819-934-2302
[email protected]

Anne-Raphaëlle Audouin
Chief Executive Officer, Nukik Corporation
613-608-1944
[email protected]

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