• Kitasoo Small Hydro Generation System

  • Klemtu, Swindle Island

The Village of Klemtu is a small community located on Swindle Island, approximately 60 km north of Bella Bella. Access to this remote area on the north coast of British Columbia is limited to seaplane, scheduled B.C. Ferry, and other marine services.

The Village of Klemtu is isolated from the BC Hydro power grid, and accordingly generates its own power using a micro-hydro power facility. The generating system is located approximately 4 km from the village, and is supplied by Baron Lake. Backup power is supplied to the village by diesel generators. The Band's power generating infrastructure had been in service for over 25 years (1980) and was unable to meet future power requirements for the community.

A power feasibility study was conducted by Kerr Wood Leidal to address the increased power demands of an expanding population, addition of several new community buildings, and the growing concerns regarding system capacity and reliability of ageing facilities. The feasibility study recommended reconstructing and upgrading the existing micro-hydro generation, transmission and distribution system.

Detailed designs were developed for construction of a new intake, penstock, and powerhouse, capable of meeting peak loads of 1.7 MW. Funding for this project was provided through INAC, ANCAP, and the Province of British Columbia (Ministry of Energy Mines and Petroleum Resources). Construction of the first phase of this project began in early 2008 and is now complete.

Phase 1 improvements include the following:

  • construction of a 4 km access road between the village and powerhouse,
  • maintenance and repair of the existing intake facility and spillway,
  • supply and installation of approximately 400 m of 500 mm diameter penstock pipe,
  • construction of a new powerhouse,
  • supply and installation of a new pelton-wheel turbine and generator rated for 1,700 kW,
  • and outdoor substation unit to increase transmission voltage to 25 kV, and
  • a new transmission line linking the new powerhouse to the existing system