Agnico Eagle Mines has signed a memorandum of understanding with Hiqiniq Energy Corporation, owned by Kitikmeot Corporation, and Tugliq Energy Co. to work on a wind power project at the Hope Bay mine.
The agreement sets a target for Tugliq Energy and Hiqiniq Energy to build and operate a wind turbine project and sell power to Agnico Eagle for its operations in Hope Bay, 125 km southwest of Cambridge Bay .
Dino Forlin, director of business development at Kitikmeot Corporation, said the project design, schedule and planned costs are still under development. Therefore, the economic and employment benefits for the Inuit community of Kitikmeot have yet to be determined, he said.
The goal is to reduce the mine’s long-term carbon emissions and increase the efficiency of power generation, according to Agnico Eagle, who has set a goal of net zero emissions for 2050.
The mining company’s greenhouse gas output increased 11% in 2020, reaching 578,156 tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent. Most of this production was produced in Nunavut, which accounts for nearly 60% of Agnico Eagle’s overall emissions, in large part because its mines in the territory depend entirely on diesel fuel.
“Wind power evolves rapidly and these new designs of wind turbines have proven to be effective in arctic conditions,” Agnico Eagle said in a July 29 press release. “Globally, we are at a critical juncture in the climate crisis and we know that the status quo cannot be maintained. Agnico Eagle recognizes the important role industry plays in meeting this challenge and we understand the importance of setting short and long term goals to tackle emissions reductions.
Montreal-based Tugliq Energy announced a partnership with Hiqiniq Energy Corporation in July 2021, with the goal of developing renewable energy projects in the Kitikmeot region.
“The partnership aims to generate economic development and enhanced specialist knowledge through development and investment in renewable energy projects while moving harmful fossil fuels to the region,” the companies said at the time.
Tugliq Energy Co.’s first wind turbine began operating in northern Quebec in 2014.
In the Northwest Territories, Diavik Diamond Mines has achieved an approximate 10% reduction in diesel consumption since installing a 9.2 MW wind farm in 2012 at a cost of $ 31 million.
Agnico Eagle acquired junior mining company TMAC Resources, the former owners of the Doris North mine in Hope Bay, in February for $ 286.6 million.
As the current operator, Agnico Eagle has budgeted $ 16.2 million for drilling activity on the Hope Bay property in 2021.