The Williams Lake Indian Band and Atlantic Power are starting out the new year with a pledge to work together in a mutually beneficial way.
The First Nation and the power company have signed a Community Benefit Agreement which they say is the culmination of many months of work between the two parties.
Chief Anne Louie says the signing of the agreement demonstrates her band’s commitment to work positively with industry.
The terms of the deal are confidential, but Atlantic’s Director of Asset Management says it formalizes their relationship and works out the process of working together on the renewal of the company’s biomass power agreement.
Atlantic has owned and operated a 66 megawatt biomass plant in Williams Lake Indian Band traditional territory since 1993. The company wants to boost the number of rail ties it can burn to generate power due to concerns of declining timber harvest levels.
Approval of that request would see 800,000 rail ties burned each year, approximately 25% of the plant’s biomass.