Energy & Power
New Brunswickers to help decide fate of Mactaquac Generating Station
By Anthony Capkun
November 25, 2014 – NB Power has begun a technical review of the potential economic, social and environmental impacts of three options involving the future development of the Mactaquac Generating Station.
The hydroelectric generating facility is located west of Fredericton on the St. John River. It began operating in 1968, and has the capacity to generate about 670MW through six turbines. The station supplies about 12% of New Brunswick homes and businesses.
The Mactaquac GS is expected to reach the end of its service life by 2030 because of a problem with concrete expansion in some of the structures, says NB Power, and while the utility says it continues to explore potential construction and engineering responses to the concrete expansion issue, the pending 2030 deadline requires the utility to begin work on end-of-life options for the station:
• repowering the station with a new powerhouse and spillway
• retaining the headpond by maintaining the earthen dam and spillway
• removing the station and restoring the headpond to a free-flowing river state
New Brunswickers are invited to visit the project website and comment have their say. Given the anticipated times required for approvals, design and site work, NB Power says it needs to choose a preferred option for the station (with the approval of its owner, the Province of New Brunswick) by December 2016.
Historic photo from www.mactaquac.ca .