Clean energy powers a new future for a First Nation

Canoe Creek Hydro

About this story

The coastal Tla-o-qui-aht have always maintained a close connection to the water. Centuries ago, the oceans, rivers and creeks of Vancouver Island's west coast was a source of food and a swift form of transportation. In more recent times, commercial fisheries have been an economic foundation to the community. Now, thanks in part to a Community Capital loan from Vancity, the Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation (TFN) launched an innovative project that will allow them to deliver clean, water-generated power to homes in their own community and in surrounding areas.

Canoe Creek Hydro is the first First Nations owned hydro facility—built and operated in a way that reflected their unique relationship with the land. Completed in June 2010, Canoe Creek now generates an average 16.8 gigawatt hours of clean, renewable energy each year. That's enough to power about 1,700 homes in the Tofino and Uclulet area. This clean energy source will also offset the production of between six and 14 thousand tonnes of CO2, compared to conventional gas- and coal-fired plants.

Thanks to innovative projects like Canoe Creek Hydro, the waters of Clayoquot Sound continue to offer a path towards self-reliance and sustainable development for generations to come.

 

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