Yukon Energy announced today that the site on Robert Service Way near the Alaska Highway will be the future home of its grid-scale energy storage project in Whitehorse. Once complete, the 7 megawatt / 40 megawatt-hour battery will be the largest grid-connected battery in the North, and one of the largest in Canada.
The final battery site is located on the overlapping Traditional Territories of the Kwanlin Dün First Nation and Ta’an Kwäch’än Council. The site is located on Kwanlin Dün First Nation Settlement Land and on land identified by the First Nation for future development. Yukon Energy made the decision to proceed with the site near the Alaska Highway after completing a fulsome assessment that looked at each site’s technical, economic, and socio-economic attributes.
A Battery Project Steering Committee with representatives from Yukon Energy, Kwanlin Dün First Nation and Ta’an Kwäch’än Council was formed in August, 2020. Since then, the three parties have been working together to assess location options for the battery and opportunities to maximize First Nations benefits from the project.
Yukon Energy, Ta’an Kwäch’än Council and Kwanlin Dün First Nation’s development corporation, Chu Niìkwän Development Corporation, have also signed a Term Sheet outlining Yukon Energy’s commitment to provide investment, procurement, contracting and partnership opportunities to both First Nations as part of the project.
The agreement provides provisions for Yukon Energy to enter into trilateral negotiations with Kwanlin Dün First Nation and Ta’an Kwäch’än Council to develop Project Benefit Agreements with each First Nation with the overall objective of Kwanlin Dün First Nation and Ta’an Kwäch’än Council to share available benefits to the extent possible. Each First Nation’s Project Benefit Agreement will be subject to approval by the appropriate First Nation’s government, and other government and regulatory bodies.
“Yukon Energy is firmly committed to establishing mutually-beneficial and strategic partnerships with First Nations governments and development corporations to build Yukon’s clean energy future. I would like to extend my sincerest thanks to Kwanlin Dün First Nation, Ta’an Kwäch’än Council, and to each of their representatives, for collaborating with us on the battery project. I personally look forward to continuing to working with both First Nations and their representatives in the coming years as more opportunities for green energy in Yukon come to fruition.”
Andrew Hall, President and CEO, Yukon Energy
“Our Development Corporation, Chu Niìkwän’s investment in this project will lead to increased opportunities for Kwanlin Dün First Nation citizens and improve access to clean stable electricity for all Yukoners. By participating in projects like this on our Traditional Territory we are realizing and activating our potential for economic development that was laid out in Chapter 22 of our Final Agreement. We wish Yukon Energy success in managing and delivering this innovative project. We see it as another step toward stabilizing Yukon’s isolated grid and reducing Yukon’s reliance on fossil fuels for back-up power generation.”
“Ta’an Kwäch’än Council is in full support of this project, as it will help to reduce diesel consumption and reduce Yukon’s carbon emissions. TKC looks forward to the opportunity to participate on this initiative as we are a committed partner alongside Kwanlin Dün First Nation.”
Chief Kristina Kane, Ta’an Kwäch’än Council
Manager, Communications and Customer Service
Kwanlin Dün First Nation
Ta’an Kwäch’än Council
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