The $10.4M Government of Canada infrastructure upgrades at Kejimkujik National Park and National Historic Site are now complete and day-use areas are open to visitors! This Kejimkujik infrastructure revitalization project was the first significant upgrade to Park infrastructure in fifty years and will greatly improve visitor experience for years to come!
Upgrades to Kejimkujik include ten new inclusive washroom and shower facilities at Jeremy’s Bay Campground. These facilities are greener and more efficient, now connected to new drinking water and wastewater treatment facilities. New and newly redesigned insulated and heated roofed accommodations are now available along with a new shared-use trail connecting the campground with popular day-use areas along the Mersey River.
Parks Canada is investing $3 billion to rehabilitate infrastructure assets within national historic sites, national parks, and national marine conservation areas across Canada. This historic five-year investment (2017-22) supports conservation while promoting visitor experience by creating safe, welcoming spaces for diverse visitor groups to use and enjoy.
Solar array grid
The Government of Canada is working towards net-zero greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) for federal operations by 2050. Canada has invested $589,400 from the Greening Government Fund to support GHG emissions reduction efforts and clean technology at Kejimkujik National Park and National Historic Site.
Parks Canada is working to reduce the greenhouse gas emissions at Kejimkujik through the installation of a 100 kilo-watt (KW) photovoltaic (PV) solar array. This investment in solar energy is a strong example of climate change mitigation efforts and environmental leadership and is a critical step in reducing GHG emissions at Kejimkujik.
The installation of Kejimkujik’s PV solar array will:
begin this spring with an expected completion for spring 2022
generate 100KW of renewable energy each year
offset camper electrical use by 100% in Jeremy’s Bay Campground
reduce Kejimkujik’s GHG emissions by around 17%
reduce around 96 tonnes of CO2 emitted by Kejimkujik annually by offsetting 100KW of demands of coal intensive electricity with solar-generated electricity
reduce around 3,300 tonnes of GHG emissions over the lifespan of this project—equivalent to taking around 1,035 cars off the road for one year
offset general power usage for Kejimkujik outside of the visitor season
be located on currently unused, cleared land close to the main electrical line
build expertise and momentum to support future energy project
Frequently asked questions
What is the solar panel project at Kejimkujik?
Funded through the federal Greening Government Fund, a centralized photovoltaic (PV) array will be sized to offset camper electrical use in Jeremy’s Bay Campground, located in Kejimkujik National Park and National Historic Site. The solar array installation will begin this spring, with completion expected for spring 2022. It will be located on currently unused, cleared land near the main electrical line for grid tie-in, using a net metering system with Nova Scotia Power.
How much does the Kejimkujik solar project cost?
Parks Canada received $589,400 from the Treasury Board Secretariat’s Greening Government Fund to construct a 100 KW grid-tied photo-voltaic solar array at Kejimkujik National Park and Historic Site, to offset camper electrical consumption and reduce greenhouse gas emissions for the park.
Where does the funding come from?
The Greening Government Fund has been established as part of the Government of Canada’s response to climate change and is managed by the Centre for Greening Government. This initiative promotes and shares innovative approaches to reducing greenhouse gases (GHGs), and provides project funding to federal government departments and agencies to reduce GHG emissions in their operations.
The fund targets projects that are anticipated to reduce GHG emissions in federal operations, that test or implement innovative approaches; that can be reproduced within or across departments; and that pursue solutions in areas where GHGs are difficult to reduce. Project funding comes from departments and agencies that generate more than 1 kilotonne of GHGs per year from air travel.
How much power will be generated by the solar array?
The average monthly consumption from the 200 electrified campsites in Jeremy’s Bay Campground is 12,000 KWh. To achieve a 100% offset for the campground, a 100 KW PV array consisting of 250 x 400W per panel, estimated 4 hours of peak sun per day, would generate 12,000 KWh per month. The campground is operated seasonally; outside of the visitor season, the solar array will offset general power usage for the park.
What will be the greenhouse gas reduction?
Kejimkujk’s electricity is provided from Nova Scotia Power, a carbon-intensive grid. Any efforts to offset the demand for coal-fired electricity consumption in the province through renewable energy inputs has high potential to reduce GHG emissions.
Displacing 100KW of grid electricity with solar-generated electricity will result in a 96 tonne reduction of CO2 annually – a 3,377 tonne reduction over the anticipated 35-year lifespan of the project installation. Over the lifetime of this project, Parks Canada will see a cumulative reduction of about 3,300 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions.
Jeremy's Bay Campground
The Government of Canada has invested over $10 million for improvements to visitor facilities at Kejimkujik National Park and National Historic Site to create a modern, safe and inclusive experience for visitors to Kejimkujik.
Highlights of improvements include:
New washroom and shower facilities
Ten new inclusive washroom and shower facilities across Jeremy’s Bay Campground provide a modern and safe experience for visitors to Kejimkujik.
The new design has a common hallway space for all users with five individual rooms, each with toilet, sink, and grooming area behind a lockable door as well as three shower rooms with lockable doors. Accessible/family options exist for both toilet rooms and shower rooms, with features such as push-button door, handrails, benches, variable-height shower heads, baby change table, and one adult change table.
New and efficient water treatment and wastewater treatment facilities
The completed work included refitting the campground’s underground wastewater management utilities and building a new water treatment facility to bring these systems up to the required standards.
Five new Ôasis units add to the accommodations at Jim Charles Point. Perched in the trees overlooking Kedge Beach, these heated teardrop-shaped units on stilts will appeal to new audiences. This new offer continues the diversification of Kejimkujik’s accommodations, joining the heated and newly insulated oTENTik village and rustic cabins at Jim Charles Point. The Yurt located at Jake's Landing remains part of the offer. For the prepared visitor, these new accommodations will warm shoulder season stays. Visitors are encouraged to bring warm clothing and sleeping bags during shoulder season stays.
New shared-use trail
Kejimkujik’s first new trail in decades connects day-use areas and the campground on a single shared-use trail. The project includes enhancements and upgrades to existing trails, as well as the addition of new trail that includes optional mountain biking features (like natural features that can be easily bypassed, rollers, berms, and rock crossings).
The name of the trail - Ukme’k (pronounced “ook-may-k”) means “twisted” in Mi’kmaq, inspired by the path the trail takes as it follows the Mersey River. Ukme’k presents visitors an opportunity to interact with the Mi’kmaw cultural landscape along an historic and culturally significant river.
Frequently asked questions
How have the washrooms been improved?
This project involved demolishing the aging washroom buildings and replacing them with new combined washroom/shower buildings. Using the existing footprint of the former washrooms, the new and improved washroom facilities are accessible, family-friendly, and gender-neutral. They are modern and bright while blending in beautifully with the outdoors.
What does this accessible, family-friendly, and gender-neutral design look like?
The washroom and shower facilities are safe spaces that are well lit and open with several exits. The current design has a common hallway space for all users with five individual rooms, each with toilet, sink, and grooming area behind a lockable door as well as three shower rooms with lockable doors. Each new facility has one accessible shower with adjustable shower heads. Children and adult change tables are also available. This will ensure more personal privacy than the current washrooms, as well as respect for the needs of people with accessibility limitations and families.
The design for these washrooms demonstrate environmental leadership by creating high efficiency, long lifespan, and easy to maintain facilities. The facilities are also designed to be Dark Sky compliant, respecting Kejimkujik’s status as a Dark-Sky Preserve.
Why did Jeremy’s Bay Campground infrastructure require so much work?
The washrooms at Jeremy’s Bay Campground were built in the late 1960s and were at the end of their lifecycle. Through federal infrastructure funding, Parks Canada has been able to complete these important projects in Kejimkujik National Park and National Historic Site aimed at ensuring a high-quality visitor experience.
Why are projects like this important for Kejimkujik?
Through infrastructure investments, Parks Canada is protecting and preserving these treasured places, while supporting local economies and contributing to growth in the tourism sector by strengthening their appeal as destinations. These investments also deliver on a number of Government of Canada priorities, such as inclusion and accessibility, greening government operations, reconciliation, and connecting Canadians to nature.
Jeremy’s Bay Campground has welcomed multiple generations of campers over the past fifty years. This investment is important because it will allow future generations to also have a personal connection to Kejimkujik’s natural and cultural heritage. Well-designed washrooms that are inclusive and accessible offer flexibility of use to accommodate the various and evolving needs of visitors.
Long term, this investment will have a positive impact on local tourism and the community as it will ensure that Kejimkujik will continue to draw visitors to the area into the future.
How do these projects move forward Parks Canada’s commitment to building relations with Indigenous communities?
Over the course of the past five years of infrastructure projects at Kejimkujik National Park and National Historic Site, Parks Canada and the Mi’kmaq of Nova Scotia, as represented by the Kwilmu'kw Maw-klusuaqn Negotiation Office (KMKNO), have developed and implemented a collaborative archaeology model.
The summer 2020 archeology work for new facilities in Jeremy’s Bay Campground has provided an opportunity to strengthen and expand this collaborative archeology model. Participatory archaeological work with the active participation of KMKNO and First Nations communities has strengthened the relationship between the Parks Canada and the Mi’kmaq.
Does this project increase the size of the Jeremy’s Bay Campground?
This project does not impact the size of the Jeremy’s Bay Campground, nor increase the size of the washroom footprint itself because the new washrooms are built on the former washroom footprint.
What were the phases of construction?
March: The first two washroom buildings at Lower Meadow and Kedge Beach are closed in, insulated, and heated. The concrete floors are poured and the interior walls are built and ready for electrical, plumbing, and mechanical services to be installed.
February: Things are really starting to take shape here at Jeremy's Bay Campground: the first two washroom buildings have walls!
January: Shovels are in the ground and work has begun on the new washrooms at Jeremy’s Bay Campground!
As the only national park that is also a national historic site, recognizing the Mi’kmaw cultural landscape across the entire site, archaeological work is a critical first step in the construction process. Before construction work began, archeologists investigated the area using a series of test pits to search for the presence of cultural resources and historical artifacts that, when found, were recovered and preserved.
Over the course of the past five years of infrastructure projects at Kejimkujik, Parks Canada and the Mi’kmaq of Nova Scotia, as represented by the Kwilmu'kw Maw-klusuaqn Negotiation Office (KMKNO), have developed and implemented a collaborative archaeology model. The completed archeology work for the new facilities in Jeremy’s Bay Campground provided an opportunity to strengthen and expand this collaborative archeology model. Participatory archaeological work with the active participation of KMKNO and First Nations communities has strengthened the relationship between the Parks Canada and the Mi’kmaq.
The lessons gained from archaeology are not only important for conservation, but also for protection and presentation. Archaeological sites and the artifacts recovered help us to better understand these locations, their history and the people that lived and worked there, which in turn informs the interpretation of the area for visitors.