Snare Rapids hydro back online, more than $600K spent on diesel

The NWT Power Corporation says its Snare Rapids hydro plant, shut down on February 2, has now returned to service.

Around $630,000 had to be spent on diesel power generation at Yellowknife’s Jackfish plant while Snare Rapids was down. The power corporation said equipment in Snare Rapids’ main generator failed.

“Two of the 56 rotor poles in the unit failed and had to be sent offsite for repair. The unit has been successfully tested over the past 24 hours and is now considered … fully functional,” the power corporation said in a statement on Friday.


Diesel replacement costs are not the only costs associated with repairing Snare Rapids and bringing it back online. The overall cost of the shutdown is not known, the power corporation said.

Noel Voykin, the power corporation’s president, said the Snare Rapids shutdown was an example of how “ageing hydro infrastructure will continue to pose challenges in maintaining reliable electricity supply.”

The territory has a 20-year plan to replace much of that infrastructure, but the process will be long and costly.

The territorial government is also attempting to convince federal counterparts to fund the bulk of a more than $1-billion project to connect the South Slave’s Taltson hydro facility to the North Slave grid while expanding its output.