Western Labrador mayors want new transmission line
Towns in western Labrador say their region needs more electricity, and they're calling on the provincial government to build a new power transmission line from Churchill Falls.
Labrador City Mayor Karen Oldford and other municipal leaders got together this week to discuss the issue.
Oldford said if the province doesn't move quickly, the mine planned by Alderon Iron Ore Corp.could be cancelled.
She said a new transmission line from Churchill Falls to the region is vital for industrial growth, including Alderon, which would bring billions in revenue to the province.
"Give us more power — or we might lose a billion-dollar project," said Oldford.
"If this line is delayed, even by another few months, it would jeopardize this whole project and all the work that's been done on it. And we can't afford to lose this project."
Wabush Mayor Colin Vardy had similar concerns about the Alderon development.
"A requirement of their financing is to have a power agreement in place — and that's the missing piece of the puzzle at this point," Vardy said.
Natural Resources Minister Derrick Dalley said the province understands the concern, and supports a new transmission line, but needs to weigh all the options before committing to actually building it.
In a statement released Friday, Alderon said it had a productive meeting with Dalley on Wednesday.
"Following our discussions with the Minister and his officials, we are confident that these matters are being pursued diligently and expeditiously," said Tayfun Eldem, Alderon's president and CEO.