Northwestel expands solar power at remote sites in Yukon, N.W.T.

Telephone company says the switch to solar saves them money on diesel costs and helps the environment.

Northwestel is using solar panels to power four more remote sites in Yukon and the Northwest Territories following the success of a pilot project last year.

Catherine Newsome with Northwestel says the new project will use solar power to provide cellular and internet service to Ross River, Yukon, and diamond mines north of Yellowknife. 

"These sites north of Ross River and north of Yellowknife are currently running on massive diesel engines and so the solar panel sites are allowing the sites to run on solar power energy and saving on us a lot on diesel," Newsome says.

"Northwestel spends $2.5 million a year on diesel so this is saving us a lot and at the same time helping the environment."

Northwestel says it will save $46,000 in fuel by the end of this year. The company is looking at installing four more solar panel sites in 2015 and another four in 2016.