Notice of intent to make a determination

Misipawistik Cree Nation – Water Treatment Plant Upgrade and Expansion Project – Public Comments Invited

November 16, 2021 – Indigenous Services Canada must determine whether the proposed  Misipawistik Cree Nation – Water Treatment Plant Upgrade and Expansion Project, located in Misipawistik Cree Nation is likely to cause significant adverse environmental effects. To help inform this determination, Indigenous Services Canada is inviting comments from the public respecting that determination.


Written comments must be submitted by December 16, 2021 to:


Shelly Johnson

200-365 Hargrave Street, Winnipeg, MB


The Proposed Project

Misipawistik Cree Nation (MCN) Reserve No. 33 is located near Grand Rapids, Manitoba approximately 400 km north of Winnipeg, Manitoba adjacent to PTH 6. The Reserve is road accessible year-round as is the location of this Project. As of April 2021, the on-reserve community population was 1,452 according to the Indigenous Services Canada Registry.

The existing water treatment plant (WTP) was constructed in 1995. In its current state, the WTP has insufficient treatment and groundwater well capacity to meet community needs. Expansion of the plant to meet current and future needs is required.

The proposed project includes expansion of the existing WTP building from approximately 105 m2 to 362 m2. The project also includes upgrading of the groundwater supply system which includes construction of one (1) new groundwater well, deepening of two (2) existing groundwater wells, and construction of a new raw water delivery pipeline, a wastewater discharge pipeline to the existing sewage collection system that discharges to the Nation's existing lagoon, and upgrades to existing lift stations 1 and 2 to increase pumping capacity.

The expanded groundwater supply will satisfy the community's 20-year design horizon and the WTP will be designed such that the treated water quality meets or exceeds the requirements set out on Heath Canada's Guidelines for Canadian Drinking Water Quality (CDWQ) and Indigenous Services Canada (ISC) Design Guidelines for First Nations Water Works.


Infrastructure: In detail, the MCN WTP and Associated Works will be comprised of the following infrastructure:

  • New Groundwater Supply System which includes:
    • One (1) new groundwater well;
    • Two (2) reconstructed existing groundwater wells; and
    • Raw water delivery pipeline.
  • ? New water treatment plant and building which includes the following processes:
    • Pre-oxidation system using sodium hypochlorite;
    • Greensand based filtration system complete with a backwash system (including air scour);
    • Final disinfection using sodium hypochlorite;
    • New treated water concrete reservoirs;
    • Process waste holding tank and process waste pumps;
    • Distribution and high flow/backwash pumps; and
    • Jockey pump and associated pressure tank.
  • ? Wastewater discharge pipeline to the existing sewage collection system that discharges to the Nation's
  • existing lagoon.
  • ? Upgrades to existing lift station 1 and 2 to increase lift station pumping capacity.


The expanded WTP will be supplied with a 3 Phase, 600V service requiring a new electrical distribution infrastructure to be provided to the site. The size of the utility service upgrade will be finalized as the design progresses. The upgrade service is expected to require a pad-mounted transformer. Transformers are expected to be ONAN (Oil Normal, Air Normal) type transformers. Manitoba Hydro will be consulted and engaged for providing the service upgrade, and this will be coordinated during detailed design. At present time, it is assumed that the utility has sufficient line capacity to provide the upgraded service to the site. A standby backup generator will be provided external to the WTP building. The generator at the WTP will provide power to the entire electrical distribution system during an outage and will be sized to handle full plant load, including the well sites and will consider future load conditions. Transfer of power from utility to generator (and vice-versa) will be made via an automatic transfer switch.

Document reference number: 1

Date modified: