Coastal Gaslink has delivered on its promise to restore Vanderhoof Lodge work camp to farmland.
Located close to Vanderhoof Airport, the land was laid in 2020 on the labor camp, which was expected to house up to 900 workers on the pipeline project. It was built on land temporarily withdrawn from the agricultural land reserve.
In a statement, Coastal GasLink said it is committed to leaving a legacy for local communities along the project route.
“When our team began engaging with indigenous and local communities and governments over a decade ago, we collaborated on a reclamation plan based on feedback and input from communities as well as specialists and accredited and experienced environmental experts from British Columbia,” the statement read. “The reclamation and legacy of the Vanderhoof Lodge site demonstrates how, when working with our community partners, we can ensure that we meet our commitments to environmental stewardship and long-term economic benefits. .
The Vanderhoof Lodge site was decommissioned in 2021 and has undergone extensive reclamation work to establish and restore agricultural productivity, transforming it into what will soon be nearly 48 acres of viable farmland.
“For me, it’s important to see it from start to finish. I take great pride in the work I do, and having the site stewarded and seeing it succeed is something we can all be proud of,” said Patrick Boylan, Environmental Inspector. “The reclamation techniques have been designed to improve the agricultural capacity of the site and here we will see productive agriculture in the future.”
As part of ongoing reclamation efforts at the site, tillage radishes have been planted on 16.5 acres of the originally cultivated area. Tillage radishes were used because their deep roots can grow quickly and help break through compacted soils. Coastal GasLink has worked closely with McTavish Resource and Management Consultants Ltd. to implement nutrient management planning tools and hired a local agronomist to optimize future production.
During its period of operation, the statement said, it provided benefits to the Vanderhoof community, including industrial tax revenues, lease payments and local business opportunities. Coastal GasLink also made in-kind donations of a trailer and fencing to the District of Vanderhoof, and a $50,000 donation for Vanderhoof Airport’s long-term infrastructure and terminal planning. In 2021, the project also provided $50,000 to purchase a new electric Zamboni for the community.