Statement on Agreement in Principle paving the way for an Impact Assessment of TC Energy proposed pumped-storage project


July 28, 2021 – Ottawa – National Defence / Canadian Armed Forces

The Department of National Defence has signed an Agreement in Principle with TC Energy that will see the company advance to an Impact Assessment for a proposed hydroelectric pumped-storage facility at 4th Canadian Division Training Centre Meaford (4 CDTC).

This Agreement in Principle provides that the project could operationally co-exist at 4 CDTC if it does not impact military activities and training. It is anticipated that TC Energy will soon pursue additional Impact Assessment and Environmental Assessment processes with both the federal and provincial governments. Should these assessments be positive, TC Energy may then seek a licence for the project under the Dominion Water Power Act (DWPA). The DWPA requires that the land remain Crown property.

Importantly, the Agreement in Principle confirms that the project will not move forward unless all necessary provincial and federal assessments are completed, including required regulatory approvals, and mitigation is in place for possible impacts to planned and future operations and training capabilities at 4 CDTC Meaford.

To date, the Department of National Defence has engaged in consultation with Indigenous groups, third-party stakeholders, and the local community, and has completed a preliminary assessment of potential impacts to military operations and training. Consultations and engagement will continue as the project moves through the various assessments and regulatory processes.

The Government of Canada and the Department of National Defence will also continue to assess the project through the Impact Assessment Agency of Canada (IAAC), Crown-Indigenous Relations, and Northern Affairs Canada (CIRNAC)/Indigenous Services Canada (ISC), as well as other relevant federal and provincial government stakeholders.

The Department of National Defence’s first priority is to ensure that our personnel have access to facilities that are critical to supporting their daily training and work in defence of Canada. This Agreement in Principle puts training and operations at 4 CDTC Meaford front and centre throughout every phase of the proposed project.

Quick Facts

  • The Impact Assessment Process evaluates a wide range of potential issues including environmental, health, social, and economic impacts and benefits, as well as potential impacts on the rights of Indigenous peoples.
  • The Impact Assessment Process includes the identification of potential negative impacts as well as potential benefits arising from a proposed project, and includes opportunities for Indigenous and stakeholder feedback and input. The Impact Assessment process will allow the Government of Canada to make a fully-informed decision about whether the project is in Canada’s interest. CIRNAC/ISC will also assess the project in accordance with the DWPA licensing application process concerning the development and use of water-power on federal lands.

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