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Rankin Inlet power conservation lifted in time for Christmas

After weeks of issues at the power plant, Qulliq Energy Corporation crews have four of the five generators working, “which is more than adequate to supply the community,” said Bruno Pereira, president and CEO of QEC.

Qulliq Energy Corporation has 4 of 5 generators back online

Residents in Rankin Inlet were asked to conserve power for nearly a month after problems with a number of its power plant generators.

People in Rankin Inlet are now able to turn on all their Christmas lights, as the Qulliq Energy Corporation lifted the request to conserve power on Wednesday.

After weeks of issues at the power plant, QEC crews have four of the five generators working, "which is more than adequate to supply the community," said Bruno Pereira, president and CEO of QEC.

The issues started back in November when several of the generators went down.

"Lose one of anything, you should be fine for power systems. What really hit us hard is we ended up losing, at one point, three of these, which the statistical odds are astronomical," Pereira said.

Parts needed to be flown up from the manufacturer, holding up repair work, Pereira said.

The four generators have been online for several days, but QEC needed to make sure they were running without problems before the community could turn everything on again.

"We are in a position where we could remove all restriction on community loading on the plant," he said.

"Hopefully the community is in good spirits, but certainly I know our operations staff, who have been working quite hard at getting the community up to speed, are happy as well."

1 more to go

As far as the fifth and final generator, QEC is getting an additional expert opinion to see if it can be repaired or if it needs to be replaced.

"If you imagine your car, if you have a minor problem you can repair it, but at a certain point, when you start repairing large damages, you start to question if you're better off buying a new vehicle or car and that's the situation we are in," Pereira said.

"We've experienced enough damage that we really need to carefully assess whether replacing the unit or repairing it is the best course for the community,"

Pereira said QEC hopes to know their next steps in January.

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