News Release

BC Hydro connects remote community of Iskut to power grid

Supply shifted from diesel to clean electricity

VANCOUVER — The remote, northern community of Iskut is now connected to BC Hydro’s clean power grid, seven months ahead of schedule. Located 430 kilometres north of Terrace, Iskut is primarily a First Nations community that has, until now, relied on diesel generation for electricity.

“This is a significant milestone in the ongoing development of British Columbia’s electricity system,” said Bill Bennett, Minister of Energy and Mines. “Connecting Iskut to the grid will provide a clean, reliable supply of power to the community. It’s also part of a larger project that will play an important role in the economic development of northwest B.C. by delivering power to a growing region.”

The connection was constructed thanks to the completion of the Northwest Transmission Line (NTL) this past summer. NTL received a capital contribution from the federal Green Energy Fund, with the condition that BC Hydro connect Iskut to its grid within a year of the NTL coming into service. This interconnection required an additional extension from the NTL – the new Iskut Extension transmission line.

“As we strive to meet a growing demand for electricity, BC Hydro makes ongoing investments that enable cost-effective, clean power to be delivered to our customers across the province,” said Greg Reimer, executive vice-president, Transmission & Distribution, BC Hydro. “We are very pleased to add the community of Iskut to BC Hydro’s customer base. Connecting Iskut to the grid seven months early and reducing their reliance on diesel generation will eliminate about 2,800 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions per year.”

The generator currently supplying power to Iskut is scheduled for removal in 2016, at a date to be determined in consultation with the Village of Iskut. Until then, it will serve as back-up supply.


  • The Northwest Transmission Line is a new 344-kilometre, 287-kilovolt transmission line that runs north between Skeena Substation, near Terrace, and a new substation close to Bob Quinn Lake.
  • The Iskut Extension is a new 287-kilovolt transmission line built by Highway 37 Power Corporation, a subsidiary of Imperial Metals Corporation.
  • The Iskut Extension runs 93 kilometres north from Bob Quinn Substation to a new BC Hydro substation at Tatogga Lake, then on to Imperial Metals’ Red Chris mine.
  • At the Tatogga Substation, some of the electricity is transformed down to distribution voltage and is being supplied to Iskut through a new, 16 kilometre distribution line.
  • The Iskut Extension can carry considerably more electricity than Red Chris mine requires. This means it will be able to deliver power to additional mines in the area in the future.
  • On December 19, after a careful review to ensure the line met company operational and safety standards and involved strong First Nations consultation, BC Hydro purchased from Imperial Metals the section of the new transmission line that runs between the Bob Quinn and Tatogga Substations.
  • Capital costs for the line will be recovered through a special tariff, which will apply to future industrial developments and independent power projects connecting to the new line. The tariff will be discontinued once the costs for the project have been recovered.

For more information please contact:

BC Hydro Media Relations
p. 604 928 6468