February 6, 2006

Lavalin Power to build 880 MW combined-cycle power plant near Toronto

Lavalin Power Ontario has been awarded a $757-million (Cdn) contract by Sithe Global Power Goreway ULC to design and build the Goreway 880-megawatt (MW) combined-cycle thermal power plant in Brampton, Ontario, northwest of Toronto.

The company, a wholly-owned subsidiary of SNC-Lavalin, will perform all engineering, procurement and construction for the new power plant, which will be the largest of its kind ever built in Canada. The Goreway facility will be designed for maximum efficiency, including a system to capture and recycle its own exhaust heat.

"The power plant will be one of the most efficient of its kind in the country," said John Gillis, senior vice-president and general manager of SNC-Lavalin's thermal division.

Work on Goreway is underway, and will be completed in two key phases. The simple cycle component of the plant is scheduled for commercial operation in June 2007, with combined cycle operation on line by July 2008.

Meanwhile, Toronto Mayor David Miller is calling for reconsideration of a proposal by Ontario Power Generation and TransCanada Corporation to build a 550 MW natural gas-fired generating station near the site of the old Hearn power plant on Toronto's eastern waterfront. Instead of traditional mega-power plants, he said what is needed is a comprehensive strategy that combines new generation and conservation.

"If we don't take this approach, we'll be repeating the mistakes made in the past," he said.

Miller further noted that Toronto Hydro has confirmed that it can conserve 200 MW by 2008 through aggressive demand management.

Toronto Hydro vice-president Blair Peberdy confirmed the steadily growing interest in utility-led conservation programs. "We've delivered 134 megawatts of conservation in the past 12 months and that's significantly more than any other utility in the province," he said. "We believe if a sustainable plan that includes sufficient generation, conservation and local green initiatives is presented to the community, there will be support."

Miller suggested that rather than pushing ahead with plans for a new mega-plant in the port lands, the province should consider refurbishing the existing Hearn facility. This upgrade, he said, could provide the remaining 350 MW that Ontario's Independent Electricity System Operator has deemed necessary to supply the city sufficient peak energy.

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