Dawson Diesel Replacement & Relocation Project

In 2023, two of the six diesel engines in downtown Dawson City will reach their end-of-life. The combined capacity of these two engines is 2.5 megawatts.

We will replace the two end-of-life engines with one new 2.5 megawatt diesel engine. The new engine will be installed at our substation in Callison. The four other diesel engines currently located in downtown Dawson City will remain at the downtown diesel plant for now.

 why do we still need diesel in Dawson City?

Diesel helps keep the lights on during winter peaks, emergencies and other outages.

Peak demand for electricity in Yukon is expected to grow by 40% in the next 10 years. To meet this demand, we’re:

  1. Maintaining the amount of electricity we can generate today by replacing end-of-life diesel units.

Available at the flip of a switch, diesel ensures Yukoners have reliable electricity service during winter peaks, emergencies and whenever renewable resources aren’t available. The local diesel plant also helps us keep the lights on in Dawson City during maintenance outages taking place elsewhere in the system, and in case of trouble on the transmission line that connects the community to hydro power on the grid.

  1. Building for the future by increasing the amount of renewable electricity available on the grid.

Projects in our 10-Year Renewable Electricity Plan will help us supply, on average, 97% renewable electricity to Yukoners by 2030.

These projects include:

  • completing hydro upgrades and enhancements; 
  • installing a grid-scale battery in Whitehorse; 
  • offering energy conservation and peak shifting programs; 
  • buying power from local solar, wind and hydro projects across the territory and in Atlin; and
  • building a new pumped storage facility on Moon Lake. 

 why Callison? 

Installing the new engine at Yukon Energy’s Callison substation offers several benefits to the Dawson City community:

  • Moves about half of the diesel power generated in Dawson City out of a residential neighbourhood and into an industrial subdivision
  • Reduces noise and air emissions from the diesel engines in the downtown core
  • Shortens the duration of power outages for customers south of downtown – including the C4, Dome, Callison, Dredge Pond and Henderson subdivisions 
  • The site has the space needed to accommodate the future relocation of the four diesel engines that will remain downtown after this project.

what’s the future of diesel in downtown Dawson?

Four diesel engines will remain at our downtown diesel plant after this project is done. Our goal is to eventually move all of the diesel engines out of downtown and into our substation in the Callison industrial area.

When exactly? We can’t say for sure. The timing of that move will depend on when those engines reach the end of their life and when it becomes cost-effective to move them. Moving all the units out to Callison right now would cost too much and put upward pressure on electricity rates – something that we also want to avoid.

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