The Lower Mattagami River Project
Ontario Power Generation has a mandate from its sole
shareholder, the Province of Ontario, to "expand, develop and/or improve its
hydroelectric generation capacity" within the province. There are three
proposed hydroelectric developments/re-developments on the Mattagami River
within the Moose River Basin. The projects are the Lower Mattagami River
Project, The Upper Mattagami River Re-development Project, and a new
Hydroelectric Development at the Mattagami Lake Dam. The map below shows the
location of the Lower Mattagami stations.
The terms upper and lower refer to flow of the river,
the upper being the area "up-river" near Timmins, the lower being the area
"down river" near James Bay.
Each of these projects will bring more clean,
renewable, hydroelectric energy to Ontario helping to reduce our carbon
footprint while improving our efficiency in use of existing waterpower
resources. For more information on the Upper Mattagami projects see
Lower Mattagami River Project
Mattagami River Project proposes redevelopment of the Smoky Falls G.S., and
extension of Little Long G.S., Harmon G.S., and Kipling G.S. Work on the
commercial feasibility of the project has been completed and OPG is in now in
the process of discussion with Aboriginal peoples addressing Environmental
Proposed Changes to the Lower Mattagami Hydroelectric
The Lower Mattagami Hydroelectric Complex is made up of four
generating stations on the Mattagami River. The four stations are (from north
to south): Little Long, Smoky Falls, Harmon, and Kipling. They are about 70
kilometres northeast of Kapuskasing and about 150 kilometres upstream of Moose
Factory and Moosonee.
Smoky Falls was built in 1931 and right now it has a
capacity of about 50 megawatts. (One megawatt produces roughly enough
electricity for 1,000 homes. )This station is older and smaller than the others
and does can not make effective use of the water passed through by the other
three plants. OPG wants to replace it with a generating station that could make
efficient use fo the available water. This would mean building a new generating
station next to the old one. There would be new manmade structures such as an
approach channel, intake and tailrace. The new generating station would be able
to pass more water and would have a size of almost 270 megawatts. The old dams
and spillways for the station would remain.
Little Long, Harmon and Kipling were all built in the
mid-1960s. Each station has two generators to make electricity. Little Long has
a capacity of 135 megawatts. Harmon is 140 megawatts. Kipling is 155 megawatts.
Since the proposed new Smoky falls dam would now be able
to use more water efficiently, OPG is also intending to extend the capacity of
the other three plants by adding a third generator to each of the three
existing generating stations. Then the stations could use available water with
the best possible efficiently and produce more clean, renewable electricity.
Little Long would then have a size of 200 megawatts. Harmon and Kipling would
each be about 240 megawatts. Together the whole project would add nearly 450 MW
of capacity to the system and make even better use of an existing resource.
Once construction work is started it is estimated that
it would take at least four years to complete all the work with a peak work
force of about 600 people.
Improving the benefits from existing renewable energy
sources and reducing our ecological footprint
The Lower Mattagami River
project allows a significant amount of new energy to be produced without
creating new dams on other rivers. This helps to reduce our load on the
environment and keep our footprint small.
OPG received Provincial Environmental Assessment (EA)
approvals to proceed with the Lower Mattagami Project and is in the process of
securing Federal Approvals under the Canadian Environmental Assessment ACT
At this point the project is in the approvals phase. Our
work includes discussions with Aboriginal peoples, detailed engineering and
solicitation of proposals for project design and construction, addressing
pre-construction Environmental Assessment and successful completion of a
federal comprehensive study.