More LNG to Power Territory This Year Following Low Hydroelectric Production

    Like other facilities, Yukon Energy says The Aishihik Hydroelectric dam is emitting low power production due to low water levels (Photo courtesy of Yukon Energy)

    Yukon Energy says up to 20% more LNG will be used to power the territory this year following low power production at their hydroelectric facilities.

    Yukon Energy says more LNG will be needed to power the territory this year following low water discharge levels in rivers.

     Yukon Energy  President Andrew Hall says with snowpack levels between 45-70% at normal capacity at all territorial hydro sites, up to 20% of electricity will needed to be created by using LNG resources this year.

    Hall says the low water levels have been developing at their sites for some time.

    "What we've seen over the last couple winters is if we go back two winters ago, we had some low water in our Mayo reservoir. Then, this last winter we had a low snowpack at our Aishihik facility. Now, what we're looking at is what's it's going to be like for next year based on the snowpack we have for today." 

    Hall says Yukon's isolated power grid makes it difficult to generate the electricity Yukoners rely on throughout the entire year, especially since the territory can't purchase or import electricity from other provinces.

    Hall says some variables for predicting  future water flows in the territory are easier than others.

    "Based on the snowpack we have, it's relatively easy to predict how much of that is going to enter our reservoirs. The real unknown is how much rain will fall this summer. That has quite a big impact of how things will end up. If we have a wet summer, that could mean the reservoirs will fill up quite well. Forecasting rainfall is a really difficult thing to do."

    Hall says thermal resources provide energy security for the territory during times of needs.

    "We last saw a phenomenon like this in the 1990's. The way the system is designed,  we rely on our hydro resources.  We are building on our renewables for future growth but  part of our diesel function is to compensate when we have low water or drought conditions."

    Yukon Energy is asking everyone to conserve energy in anyway they can, including limiting yourself to a five-minute shower, turning off the lights when your not using them and using LED's instead of incandescent lights.

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