The Splatsin First Nation, Sorgent.e Hydro Canada, and Fosthall Creek Power have signed an Impact Benefit Agreement that will bring economic and social benefits to the First Nation. “In order to move away from government funding and bring prosperity to our people, our vision is building long term partnerships such as the one we are signing today, ” said Chief Wayne Christian.
In 2001, Darcy Fear from nearby Crescent Valley, BC saw potential for a small hydroelectric project at Fosthall Creek, a farming town that was never built. He met with Harold Kalke, a visionary businessman with experience in energy and real estate industries, and together they created Fosthall Creek Power Ltd. In 2013, Fosthall Creek Power partnered with Sorgent.e Hydro Canada to complete the development of a clean energy hydro project: a proposed 15 megawatts run-of-river project near Nakusp, BC. “Harold and I have spent 13 years of our lives in this development, and with this agreement we are taking big steps towards the main goal, that is, the construction of the power plant,” said Darcy Fear, now Vice President of Fosthall Creek Power Ltd.
After years of conversations and consultation, the Splatsin First Nation, Sorgent.e and Fosthall have signed an agreement for the development, construction, and operation of the power plant, which could generate enough power to supply 5 times the households in the entire Secwepemc (Shuswap) Nation for more than 40 years. Fosthall Creek Power is completing the last stage of development before construction and plans to deliver long-term clean energy to BC Hydro’s grid. Located on the shore of Upper Arrow Lake, the project has a friendly environmental footprint that will include a spawning channel and a pen-stock that runs on an old log flume pathway.
The Splatsin First Nation community believes the project will help develop their community while respecting the environment and their cultural heritage. The project will also foster the business diversification that Splatsin First Nation has been actively working on for the last few years, bringing social benefits and good job opportunities to the area. They expect to create about 400 short term and long term jobs. Sorgent.e employs over 200 people and runs 1,000 megawatts of projects, applying innovative solutions and working with local communities in 25 countries. Sorgent.e owns and operates approximately 100 megawatts of hydro, wind, and solar plants in Italy and Chile worth over $140 million, along with several projects in Canada and South/Central America. “We are an international group that likes to become local where it works. We are happy to be welcomed in your territory, where we want to stay with you for decades to come,” said Lucas De Haro, CEO Sorgent.e Hydro Canada. Construction of the Fosthall Creek project is expected to begin in the summer of 2015.