"Our operations are strategically spread across Québec, with seaplane bases located in key areas such as Natashquan, Havre St-Pierre, Manic 5, Caniapiscau, Sept-Îles, and Schefferville, and extending into Wabush in Newfoundland and Labrador."
Can you give an overview of Air Tunilik and the company’s services to Québec’s mining industry?
Air Tunilik is a renowned aviation company based in Québec, boasting more than 20 years of industry experience. Our reputation as the leading bush aviation company in Québec stems from our unwavering commitment to serving mining companies in northern Québec. We offer comprehensive transportation solutions for both personnel and cargo, including essential supplies such as fuel, drill equipment, food, machine components, and other materials required for mining camp operations.
Our operations are strategically spread across Québec, with seaplane bases located in key areas such as Natashquan, Havre St-Pierre, Manic 5, Caniapiscau, Sept-Îles, and Schefferville, and extending into Wabush in Newfoundland and Labrador. In our continuous pursuit for efficiency, we acquired an airport three years ago north of Wabush and west of Schefferville, featuring a 6000-foot runway capable of accommodating a Boeing 737.
Can you elaborate on Airlink Tunilik’s fleet?
Air Tunilik operates an extensive fleet of over 10 seaplanes, each capable of carrying cargo loads of up to 3,000 pounds, a capacity that exceeds most helicopter models. We also deploy ski planes during winter to ensure uninterrupted service for the mining industry. Our fleet comprises six-seat Beaver DHC-2 and nine-seat Turbo Otter DHC-3T, cementing our status as a premier bush plane operator in Québec and one of the largest in North America. Our DHC-3T Turbo Otter can transport up to 2,500 pounds of cargo and demonstrates exceptional versatility, capable of landing on skis, water, or wheels. In addition, we operate Cessna Caravan planes, modern aircraft designed for passenger/cargo transport on wheels and floats, and can carry up to 3,400 pounds on wheels.
How will the increased demand for critical minerals impact the aviation segment?
Mining sites are often located in remote areas where air travel is more feasible than road access. For mining operations located over 50 miles away from roadways, our services become indispensable for personnel and cargo transportation. Our Cessna Caravan aircraft are also capable of conducting airborne surveys, in partnership with specialist companies, making them an invaluable tool in the mining sector.
What is Air Tunilik’s approach to sustainability and reducing greenhouse gas?
Sustainability is a priority for Air Tunilik. We have made significant strides in reducing our carbon footprint by transitioning from piston engines to turbine engines, significantly lowering our carbon emissions. This transition also involves shifting from avgas, a gasoline-based fuel, to jet fuel, a cleaner alternative. Looking ahead, we envision a future where battery-powered aircraft become an integral part of our fleet. Though currently still under development and testing, we are optimistic about incorporating this technology into our operations within the next decade.
What are Air Tunilik’s main priorities in 2023 and 2024?
As we navigate through 2023 and 2024, our strategic focus will be threefold. First, we aim to consistently deliver superior services to our clients, backed by our uncompromising commitment to safety and reliability. Second, we intend to expand our fleet with the acquisition of more advanced aircraft to improve our cargo and personnel transportation capabilities. This will not only enhance our service offerings but will also contribute to increased operational efficiency. Lastly, we will continue to explore innovative technologies and eco-friendly practices that align with our sustainability goals, ensuring that our growth does not compromise our responsibility towards the environment. We look forward to these exciting advancements in our services and operational capabilities.