AltaGas has announced that water flow has been started at its Forrest Kerr run-of-river hydroelectric project in Canada.

Subject to the availability of the Northwest transmission line, the 195MW hydroelectric project is expected to commence power generation in mid-2014.

The power project is capable of generating enough energy to power the equivalent of approximately 70,000 in British Columbia.

AltaGas chairman and CEO David Cornhill said "The company is very close to starting up its Forrest Kerr facility and providing clean energy to the British Columbia’s electricity grid.

"The contribution from our dedicated staff, the Tahltan First Nation and our contractors during the past four years of construction has been nothing short of phenomenal," Cornhill added.

The company has commissioned the weir, in-take structure, de-sanding area and radial gate control valve at the Forrest Kerr project.

As part of the final phases of commissioning, water will fill the power tunnel gradually over a seven day period in preparation for full speed no load testing on the turbines and supporting auxiliary systems.

Using on-site generation, the company will also begin commissioning the Forrest Kerr power project.

Commissioning to tie the power project into the transmission line will begin once Northwest transmission line is available.