Assessing the NWT’s Remediation Potential

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January 19, 2023

Is it possible to develop a remediation economy in the Northwest Territories in the next 30 years?  As the Government of the Northwest Territories ponders ways to grow and diversify the NWT economy, it’s a question ITI is working to answer. 

A study by Ottawa-based Stratos, an ERM Group company, is offering some insight to the potential that may exist.

Overview of the NWT Remediation Economy Engagement Paper

It estimates that remediation activities in the NWT could be worth approximately $4.8B over the next 30 years with just-under 90% of spending likely to occur in the next 15.  The annual spend is estimated to be roughly $250M per year for the next 15 years, generating approximately $129M per year in GDP to the NWT in that timeframe.

By comparison, mining and oil and gas extraction in the NWT generated $1.5B in GDP for 2019 and $1B in GDP for 2020.

Remediation activities could support approximately 700 FTEs (full-time equivalent positions) per year for roughly 15 years. For context, there were 3,300 people employed across ‘trades, transport and equipment operators and related occupations’ positions in the NWT in 2019.

By today’s count, 500 sites in the NWT need assessment, remediation and/or long-term monitoring.  While a remediation economy would likely be driven by large projects, and predominantly related to resource extraction projects including those in the oil and gas sector, smaller individual opportunities exist within communities.

The GNWT wants to hear what NWT residents and businesses think; and what it can do, if anything, to ensure northerners are positioned to capitalize on these opportunities in a way that will keep the benefits in the North.

You can have your say here