Sustainability Reporting Initiative

Community

 

Our relationships drive our success.

For 30 years, Innergex has believed in a world where abundant renewable energy promotes healthier communities and creates shared prosperity. We learned long ago that responsible and successful energy development is driven by the will of host communities. Since our inception in 1990, we have been driven by the philosophy that collaboration and integration with the regions that host our projects is essential to growing renewable energy generation and creating opportunities for shared prosperity. We have seen first hand how renewable energy projects can make positive, long-term impacts on society, economies and the environment.

Creating opportunities

Our investments in renewable energy projects bring hundreds of new job opportunities in our value and supply chain to the benefit of regional districts and local communities.

During the early development phase, we conduct our due diligence to ensure a successful project outcome. Our team works with independent third-party contractors on various essential services including engineering, environmental monitoring and assessment, legal, and community relations. During the construction phase, we endeavour to employ workers, as well as procure the parts, materials, and components as locally as possible. Depending on the size of the project, there can be over 300 workers at the height of the construction phase who also make a positive impact in the local area.

Operators manage the daily activities at each facility providing skilled services for the life of the project which is typically anywhere between the facility’s 20-40-years. Furthermore, the facility continues to rely on an extended supply chain that provides the necessary parts and regularly attracts service providers, for instance environmental consultants, for regulatory oversight or monitoring during its life cycle.

At Innergex, the trust and mutual respect we develop with the communities in which we operate is something we strive hard to earn and keep. We remain committed to delivering long-term value through strategic and innovative investment opportunities.

Indigenous Communities

At Innergex, being a partner of choice for Indigenous communities across Canada on renewable energy projects is something we take great pride in.

Our model is based on the belief that building lasting relationships and sharing the economic benefits of our projects not only creates wealth and future opportunities in Indigenous communities, but is a path to reconciliation.

Our ability to understand and adapt to each community’s individual needs has been a hallmark of how we approach each project. Whether it be through shared economic benefits, employment opportunities, shared ownership, partnership agreements, event sponsorship, community investment or becoming involved in community associations, we recognize our responsibility and opportunity to help bring socio-economic development to local and Indigenous communities. Designed with clear expectations, our partnership arrangements are based on open lines of communication, respect and often act as a catalyst for sustained prosperity and independence.

Several of our projects today stand as testaments to our commitment of working diligently with our Indigenous partners to create shared prosperity. Our Kwoiek Creek project in British Columbia is a 50-50 partnership that, over the life of the project (at least 40 years), is expected to provide the Kanaka Bar Indian Band with consistent own-source revenue that is being reinvested into the community through social development programs. More recently, our Mesgi’g Ugju’s’n wind project, a 50-50 partnership with the Mi’gmaq of the Gaspe region of Quebec, will provide the three communities that make up the partnership with a source of long-term revenue from the 20-year operational life of the project.

Innavik Hydro Project

In 2019, we solidified a partnership with the Inuit community of Inukjuak on the shores of Hudson Bay to develop the Innavik hydroelectric project. The project, a 50-50 ownership structure, is a 7.5 MW run-of-river hydroelectric facility that will replace reliance on diesel fuel for almost all of Inukjuak’s energy needs over the 40-year Power Purchase Agreement signed with Hydro-Québec.

The Project originated from the community’s desire to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, promote self autonomy, and create long-term prospects for sustainable development. Innavik is expected to make significant social and economic impacts for the 1,800 inhabitants of Inukjuak, Nunavik’s second most populated community.

A portion of the revenues generated from the project will be re-invested into the community to promote social, educational, and heritage needs of children, youth and elders, and develop future economic entrepreneurship opportunities. This partnership was nurtured over many years and through trust, collaboration and respect, it will have positive long-lasting impacts for the community, the planet, and our stakeholders.

A good neighbour

Innergex is proud of its track record of nurturing strong, long-term relationships with the communities that host our facilities. From conceptualization to commissioning and through out operation, working with our host communities and sharing the benefits that arise from a renewable energy project is a core element of our sustainable development strategy. Beginning with extensive pre-development consultations and community outreach, we take the time to learn about a community’s needs and oftentimes work with them to ensure we design the best possible facility that meets a mutually beneficial conclusion.

We believe in strong relationships with our host communities built on bilateral two-way communication and mutual understanding. We achieve these relationships through our commitment to conducting ourselves with integrity, transparency, and respect.

Innergex is among the first independent renewable energy producers in Canada to understand the value of partnering with municipal governments to share in the wealth generated through clean, local energy generation. Especially when our projects are located far from major urban areas, they offer a long-term source of revenue that is injected back into municipalities to build further capacity, create jobs and add value to their economies. Our first such project, the Viger-Denonville community wind farm in Quebec, has been in operation since 2013 and will continue to share the value generated by the facility with the Regional County Municipality of Rivière-du Loup annually throughout the duration of the 20-year power purchase agreement.

The positive impacts of a renewable energy project on a community can be vast and long-term. Some of the benefits include:

  • Own source of revenues
  • Investments in community infrastructure projects
  • Skills training and job creation
  • Directing sustainable land resource development
  • Promoting healthy communities
  • Promotion of Indigenous rights and territory
  • Contracting opportunities for Indigenous-owned businesses
  • Building capacity for future development projects
  • Fighting climate change

Giving Back

Innergex prides itself on being a responsible corporate citizen. Establishing and maintaining a local presence in the communities where we operate is an important aspect of our development strategy. Each year, the Corporation supports many initiatives in the environmental, economic, health, and educational categories. Innergex stays active in various projects that reflect its values and development priorities, as well as various Indigenous, local and regional community initiatives. Investing at the grass roots level in these communities can oftentimes bring about positive social change.

To mark its 30th anniversary and increase its visibility to its partners, clients, suppliers, investors and to the general public, Innergex had adopted the “Time for Optimism” slogan. This call-to-action was meant to highlight all of our actions to build a better world with renewable energy. Then came the unprecedented situation created by the rapid worldwide growth of COVID-19. Our Mission to build a better world thorough renewable energy became even more important. While we continue to produce renewable energy for the Planet, we wish to share even more Prosperity for the well-being of all the People. In light of the current circumstances we collectively find ourselves in, we have temporarily modified our slogan to underline our desire to contribute to the fight against this disease and its impact on our communities.

Time for Solidarity aims to address the hardships arising from the pandemic to reach those most in need and focuses on the communities where we operate in Canada, the United States, France and Chile.

Innergex has made an initial commitment of $160,000 and is encouraging employees to also make a personal contribution to identified charitable food banks and relief organizations including United Way Canada (various regions), BC First Nations Health Authority, Feed Ontario, Sirivik, Wichita Falls Area Feeding America and Hope Emergency Program.

This initiative will compliment already existing programs within Innergex and its partners that provided support to communities in the vicinity of some of our facilities.

As an essential service provider, Innergex is grateful to able to continue its good work and to not have disruptions to its workforce. Our strength lies in our employees and we are fortunate they are proving their resiliency, adaptability, and aptitude for working from home during this crisis. As we do our part to flatten the curve, we are also aware there is more we can do.

In 2019, Innergex had a wider reach with financial or in-kind support to

174 organizations,

54 more than in 2018

Legacy Projects

Our involvement with the communities that host our projects is an important aspect of our development strategy. Priorities are given to legacy projects that have the ability to act as catalysts for further economic development initiatives. Some major investments over the years have included a pedestrian suspension bridge, the creation of a kayak park, development of a nature trail and the planned installation of solar panels on a historic theatre. These initiatives not only bring a sense of civic pride but are enjoyed by locals and visitors alike while maximizing outdoor recreation and protecting the environment.

PROJECT AMOUNT CONTRIBUTED LOCATION
Rutherford Creek Kayak Park Approximately $600,000 in construction and $7,500 annually for 20 years British Columbia
Cascade Falls Suspension Bridge $225,000 British Columbia
Friendship Trail Bridge $500,000 British Columbia
Support free shuttle services carrying canoes upstream on the Portneuf River $20,000/year for the life of the project Quebec
Chutes-de-la-Chaudière Park $250,000/year for park management Quebec

Infrastructure Investment

As our projects are located mainly in regions far from major urban areas, the long-term economic impacts we bring often extend beyond the requirements and commitments we disclose. Investing in new or upgraded infrastructure initiatives helps build the long-lasting relationships that Innergex has long been recognized for. Whether upgrading or developing new roadways, bridges or parking lots that help access natural areas, Innergex has not only invested in local projects that immediately benefit the local community on a day-to-day basis, but also support their economic growth.

Tax Income

Our facilities generate substantial tax revenues, through land use, construction and operational activities, and day-to-day business activities, for the jurisdictions in which they operate. Innergex continues to engage in responsible tax practices and provides transparency to both its shareholders and applicable regulatory bodies. Our filings are audited by an independent third party and presented on a quarterly basis and each year at our Annual General Meeting in May.

Policies

Innergex’s policies are designed to guide the Corporation and its employees to ensure compliance in all aspects of its business. These policies ensure the sustainable growth of the Corporation through supporting employees with information-sharing and training, providing transparency with shareholders and the public, and clearly laying out the Corporation’s vision for ethical and acceptable behaviour. The policies are reviewed on an annual basis and are updated accordingly. Policies related to this section include: