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OPG’s Niagara hydro operations to commence massive, multi-year refurb

April 23, 2024 | By Anthony Capkun

OPG workers walk through the turbine hall at the Sir Adam Beck generating complex.

April 23, 2024 – Ontario Power Generation (OPG) announced plans to refurbish up to five hydroelectric stations in Niagara Falls, including the Sir Adam Beck I and II stations.

“Upgrading and optimizing OPG’s renewable generation workhorses like the Sir Adam Beck complex is crucial to support the growing demands of electrification and a thriving economy,” said Ken Hartwick, president & CEO, OPG.

Sir Adam Beck I went into service in 1922 and was considered the largest hydro plant in the world at the time, says OPG. In 1954, the 16-unit Sir Adam Beck II went into service, and remains Ontario’s largest hydro station by generating capacity.

Aerial view of the Sir Adam Beck I and II hydroelectric generating stations.

The multi-year refurbishment project will ensure about 1700 MW of capacity for the next 30+ years across up to five Niagara hydroelectric stations.


The refurbishment of older generating units will involve removing some key components, including the turbine runners that help convert rushing water into electricity. These parts will be replaced with newer, more efficient designs that will require less water to generate power.

OPG is partnering with General Electric Vernova to complete the first phase of the $1-billion refurbishment project. Starting in 2025 and lasting over 15 years, GE will refurbish up to 25 units at the Sir Adam Beck I and II stations, increasing their capacity by up to 50 MW.

The initiative, says OPG, is part of its overall commitment to invest in updating and upgrading its hydroelectric fleet across the province. Its turbine-generator refurbishment program will renew 48 OPG hydroelectric stations to extend station life while increasing efficiency and, in some cases, generating output.

OPG’s Niagara operations encompass five hydroelectric generating facilities, including the Sir Adam Beck I and II, Sir Adam Beck Pump, and DeCew I and II. Each year, these plants meet about 9% of the province’s energy needs.

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