News Release

Innovative land-based salmon farm receives Power Smart incentive


PORT MCNEILL – KUTERRA’s new state-of-the-art salmon farm is energy efficient thanks to a Power Smart incentive from BC Hydro.

The KUTERRA farm is the first land-based, closed containment, commercial Atlantic salmon farm in North America. The facility’s power use will be about 1,000 megawatt hours lower each year thanks to the energy efficiency measures – the savings are enough to power 100 homes annually. The new design will also lower the facility’s annual electricity bill by more than 70 per cent.

BC Hydro presented KUTERRA with a Power Smart incentive of $143,000 today for designing and installing the unique system that significantly reduces energy consumption at the farm. Some of the measures include:

  • technology that captures and reuses heat from the ground and the air, and the heat generated by operating equipment,
  • new equipment like heat pumps and a radiant coil system that efficiently maintains tank temperatures, and
  • high-grade insulation.

KUTERRA is owned and operated by the 'Namgis First Nation, and was developed to offer a sustainable alternative to conventionally farmed salmon. The facility employs up to six workers year-round.

Power Smart programs for BC Hydro’s industrial customers offer a range of financial incentives to help companies reduce operating costs by taking control of their energy use.


Bill Bennett, Minister of Energy and Mines

"The 10-year rate plan includes $1.6 billion for Power Smart investments. Moving forward, we need to continue with energy conservation and efficiency as a resource option and to help customers save money. This project is a good example of how innovation can reduce electricity use and operating costs. For industrial customers, participation in Power Smart programs can result in big savings."

Joanna Sofield, general manager of Customer Care and Power Smart, BC Hydro

"Sustaining wild salmon stocks is important to First Nations in British Columbia, and through KUTERRA the 'Namgis First Nation are pioneering a new process which has the added benefit of using less electricity. The project also provides our Power Smart industrial customer with the economic benefit of achieving additional energy savings."

Chief Bill Cranmer, 'Namgis First Nation, owner of KUTERRA

"We are delighted that BC Hydro's Power Smart program recognizes our energy-efficient operation. Our mission for the KUTERRA farm is to show there's a strong business case for growing Atlantic salmon on land. Energy efficiency with low energy cost is an important part of the business case."


Power Smart's industrial programs offer financial incentives to assist customers in incorporating efficient design options when planning a new facility or plant expansion, including:

  • 100 per cent funding for an energy efficiency feasibility study into efficient design alternatives, and
  • capital incentives to cover as much as 75 per cent of the incremental construction costs for the customer to incorporate efficient design recommendations into their new plant or expansion construction projects.

For more details about Power Smart industrial programs, visit:


About BC Hydro

BC Hydro has been providing clean, reliable power to British Columbians for more than 50 years while maintaining among the lowest rates in North America. BC Hydro is a provincial Crown corporation that serves 1.9 million customers and invests in the electrical system and in energy conservation to deliver a safe and reliable supply of electricity for today’s customers and for generations to come.



Kuterra Limited Partnership is 100-percent owned by the 'Namgis First Nation. It was founded three years ago to grow Atlantic salmon on land commercially using a recirculating aquaculture system (RAS). Kuterra has three core goals: a) bust myths – to dispel misconceptions about land-based salmon aquaculture, b) make a good profit – to attract investment and accelerate the shift of Atlantic salmon aquaculture to land, and c) promote sustainability and growth – to create long-term jobs and business opportunities that are consistent with 'Namgis values of protecting land and water. 



The 'Namgis First Nation comprises more than 1700 members, roughly half of whom live on Cormorant Island (Alert Bay) in British Columbia. 'Namgis core territory lies on northern Vancouver Island and nearby islands, centred on the Nimpkish Valley and related watersheds. Its government manages an annual budget of $17 million. It administers health, education, social and community services, owns and operates four business ventures, and has equity partnerships in another three ventures. All 'Namgis activities and partnerships are governed by respect for the environment, culture, good governance, self-sufficiency and sustainable prosperity for all its members.