NB Power seeks environmental approval for clean energy project at Mactaquac Generating Station
Fredericton, N.B. - NB Power is seeking environmental approval for a major project to rehabilitate the Mactaquac Generating Station, New Brunswick’s largest and most reliable producer of renewable energy.
NB Power has registered the project for review under the Government of New Brunswick’s Environmental Impact Assessment legislation.
“This project represents our most significant investment in clean energy in more than 50 years,” said NB Power President and CEO Lori Clark. “Maintaining this important generation asset will help enable New Brunswick to achieve a net-zero electricity system and support global efforts to tackle climate change.”
The registration documents can be viewed here.
New Brunswickers can learn more about the project at in-person open houses planned for the fall in Fredericton, Mactaquac and Woodstock.
NB Power values and is committed to fostering positive and productive relationships with New Brunswick First Nations and has been engaging with the Wolastoqey Nation about the future of the Mactaquac Generating Station since 2013. This engagement and consultation will continue through the EIA process.
The EIA process is a review of the potential environmental impacts associated with the project and is only one component of the overall project approval process. Prior to the start of construction, the project will still require financial approvals from the NB Power Board of Directors and the Government of New Brunswick.
Pending approvals, construction is expected to begin in 2024.
The Mactaquac Hydro Generating Station was built in 1968 and has been managing issues related to expanding concrete and aging infrastructure for the last two decades.
With a generating capacity of 672 MW, the hydro station is New Brunswick’s largest clean energy resource. The station also supports the reliable integration of more variable sources of renewable energy into the provincial power grid, including wind and solar.
The Mactaquac Life Achievement Project will include major repairs to concrete and replacement of equipment. The project will also enhance upstream and downstream fish passage for species native to the St. John River. When complete, the Station is expected to operate until at least 2068, its intended lifespan.
“We believe this project brings key economic and environmental benefits to New Brunswick,” added Clark. “We will engage with stakeholders and the public to make sure we understand all potential concerns from an environment, community and Indigenous perspective and consider them as we move forward."
NB Power proposed the rehabilitation project in 2016 following a comprehensive public review of potential future options for the Station that involved the public, stakeholders, and First Nations communities. That review included social impact studies, engineering studies, business analysis and independent science conducted by the Canadian Rivers Institute’s Mactaquac Aquatic Ecosystem Study, the largest whole-of-river ecosystem study ever completed on the St. John River.
In addition to expert analysis, NB Power conducted a far-reaching public engagement campaign that involved more than 10,000 New Brunswickers.
MEDIA CONTACT: Dominique Couture at 506-377-8057 or firstname.lastname@example.org.