Arviat tank farm development restarts ‘from square one’

Some community members opposed previous design and location

Arviat council voted to restart the development of a tank farm that was to be build in the area pictured here. (File photo courtesy of Nooks Lindell)

By Jeff Pelletier - Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

A proposed tank farm in Arviat will not go ahead as planned after the hamlet’s council voted to ask the Government of Nunavut to restart the project.

In a special meeting last month, council voted to withdraw a bylaw that would have rezoned a shoreline area of the community for the farm’s construction.

The hamlet also asked that the GN and its petroleum products division work with the community to ensure residents are properly consulted on the tank farm’s development.

“We voted to start the process over, give it back to the GN and restart everything, including the consultations,” Mayor Joe Savikataaq Jr. said in a phone interview.

“We’re going to start from scratch, from square one again and redo everything.”

Prior to the vote, some Arviat residents had expressed opposition to the project’s proposed location.

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Nooks Lindell, whose family lives close to that area, launched a petition calling for the project to be blocked.

While acknowledging Arviat needs to replace its current tank farm, Lindell told Nunatsiaq News in May he was concerned about the potential environmental impact of the project.

Lindell wasn’t available Monday to discuss council’s call to restart the planning process.

While Lindell’s petition collected 694 signatures, Savikataaq said several factors prompted council to reconsider the project in its original form.

“There were many consultations, but it could have been handled better,” the mayor said.

The hamlet is working with the territory’s Community and Government Services Department to determine what’s next in this development.

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“Soon, we’ll have a roadmap of what to expect [in] the future [and] on timelines and everything,” Savikataaq said.

“It’s at the hands of the government right now.”

David Joanasie, Nunavut’s Minister of Community and Government Services, said his department supports Arviat’s decision and is committed to collaborate with the community on the next steps.

The department “is identifying potential community tank farm sites and developing evaluation criteria for community consideration,” Joanasie said in an emailed statement.

“The department remains committed to ensuring adequate fuel supply in Arviat.”

Information on the Nunavut Planning Commission’s website indicates Arviat’s current tank farm requires major expansion and code upgrades.


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(15) Comments:

  1. Posted by Make arviat pay on

    Their council needs to be investigated. Make them pay for the new tank farm and make them pay for the cost of chartered helicopters for fuel resupply. This mistake will cost government millions of dollars that could be used for housings instead.

    • Posted by Hunter on

      The mistake was by CGS trying to ram this project down Arviat’s throat.

      They did not provide options where it was going to be built. Consultants arrived in Arviat few years ago looked around the town and said this spot was perfect for a tank farm, no community consultants and reported back to the CGS.

      CGS is finally listening to the community and not the consultants that do not even live in Arviat.

  2. Posted by Confused on

    The plan for the tank farm location was the dumbest ever, as seen in this picture it be too close to the Houses, grave yards and the shoreline.

  3. Posted by Northern Inuit on

    how many Airlifts of fuel has Arviat gotten this year? how many will they need because the town didn’t want this in the location chosen?

    although PPD does not raise the price of fuel right away, they will eventually as each Airlift of fuel will cost at least $300k to $350K depending on how much fuel needs to be sent to the community.

    if Arviat declined the location of the tank farm. let them pay the price increase of the fuel. or simply ration them gasoline when they get low. see how long that lasts until they accept where the tank farm location was allocated in the first place.

    • Posted by Hunter on

      If I recall similar thing happened in Kinggait with their power plant. QEC wanted to build the new power plant in the middle of town while the community wanted it built on the outskirts. Project got delayed over and over again because QEC insisted to build it in the middle of town.

      CGS Sr. Management are to blame for not listening to the concerns of community residents of how they would like to see their communities developed. CGS figured they could just shove the project down their throat and dictate a location like always.

      CGS needs to listen to the community not the other way around.

      • Posted by Thomas Shelby on

        Since when did the people of the community become developers? The people of the community have no clue how to develop anything ffs

        • Posted by Atatsiak on

          A good half of the community are facebook professionals who was able to get a nonchalant petition going. This development should have never been stopped. Now it will hinder the communities growth.

  4. Posted by Atatsiak on

    Enjoy a couple more years of rusted fuel sediments in your machines, Arviat.

  5. Posted by Arviatmiutaq on

    GN did conduct proper consultations and met with council numerous times Arviat should be focused on mayor elections and restart the democratic process instead. Lindell is manipulating the system for his own personal advantage. He lives in the area, the area he prefers poses much more environmental risks due to the watershed and the length of pipeline required. Come on Council, borrow some courage lead your people and do the right thing! Even if it upsets a priviliged few!

    • Posted by walk not talk on

      I suggest you put your name in the hat for mayor next election and fix up Arviat. Wish you luck as you will need it.

    • Posted by Holy boy on

      Make arviat great again

  6. Posted by Skunk works Hamlet CAO’s, Municipal Affairs/ CGS on

    The CGS will not listen nor their laid back staff will make an effort to meet or consult with municipalities. This is an on-going issue with GN. Things will certainly NOT improved any better unless Dept. of EDUCATION clean-up their stubborn act to improve Education in Nunavut to fulfill jobs i.e. engineer, accounting, admin. or jobs that presently cannot be filled due to poor quality Education. Planning are done behind closed doors without input of general public.

    This may also result of poor Municipal admin. or elected Municipalities, which lead to personal municipal affairs or pension. This may perhaps due to poor admin. CAO, elected members, or above all i.e. I know!?!

  7. Posted by Joshua curley on

    It’s should be block…..Arviat Nunavut is the beluga whale migration path way for whales..if something happens it would be biggest news new in the world…scrap the tank farm.

    • Posted by Northern Inuit on

      yes, scrap it and skip the town next resupply.

      then watch Arviat freak out next year.

  8. Posted by I live in the Arctic on

    Poor public participation at the consultation meetings is my guess, are there a public meeting records of those consultations, the Hamlet Council represents the community of Arviat.


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