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Thunder Bay coal plant converts to natural gas

NEWS HIGHLIGHT

Thunder Bay coal plant converts to natural gas

Ontario’s Thunder Bay Generating Station is switching from fossil coal to fossil natural gas instead of woody biomass.


November 24, 2010
By Ontario Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure

Nov. 24, 2010 – Ontario’s Thunder Bay
Generating Station is switching from fossil coal to fossil natural gas instead
of woody biomass. The conversion of two coal-burning units at the Thunder Bay
plant will create 100 construction jobs and help protect jobs at the plant. It
will be the first plant in northern Ontario to be converted to natural gas. The
project, which is outlined in Ontario's updated Long-Term Energy Plan, is
expected to begin in 2011 and will be completed before the end of 2014. The
converted plant is expected to generate up to 150 million kWh of non-renewable
electricity, enough to power 15,000 homes/year. In addition, emissions from the
plant will be cut in half.

"This plant has been part of the
Ontario Power Generation (OPG) fleet for more than 45 years, and we're happy it
will be re-powered," says Frank Chiarotto, senior vice-president, thermal,
for OPG.

The Long-Term Energy Plan leaves provision to explore opportunities for
co-firing biomass with natural gas in the converted units. Biomass
supply and cost will be important considerations.

Northwestern Ontario's other coal-fired
generating station in Atikokan is being converted to biomass. The project will
be complete in 2013 and will generate 150 million kWh of renewable power.

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