During the summer and fall, we must spill water at our Whitehorse facility because we don’t have the ability under our current water license to store it in the Southern Lakes system. However in winter there isn’t enough water to meet the demand and Yukon Energy must at times resort to using diesel or liquefied natural gas to meet peak loads. Burning thermal is costly and emits greenhouse gases and other pollutants.
The Southern Lakes Enhanced Storage Concept proposes a change to our water license so we could store some of that water that is currently spilled, for use in the winter. It considers a revision to the existing Full Supply Level (the controlled maximum lake level stipulated in our water license) of 30 centimetres for a limited period in the late fall, and a change of 10 centimetres to the Low Supply Level during the spring. In many years the water level of the Southern Lakes naturally exceeds this conceptual full supply level.
This option is one that has been proposed in our 2016 Resource Plan.
We have worked closely with First Nations and local residents on this proposed project. In 2017, the Carcross/Tagish First Nation indicated its support to move to the next phase of planning and to prepare a Yukon Environmental and Socio-economic Assessment Board project proposal.
Our Research to Date
Yukon Energy has undertaken many studies on the potential impacts of this project on wildlife, wetlands, shorelines and sub-surface structures.