The Ontario government is supporting Ontario Power Generation’s (OPG) plan to refurbish its R.H. Saunders Generating Station in Cornwall, the second largest hydroelectric station in the province.

Once completed in the early 2040s, this major infrastructure program will secure up to 160 gigawatt-hours of additional clean electricity each year, the equivalent to powering more than 19,000 homes.

“The R.H. Saunders Generating Station – the second largest hydro facility in the province – has been providing Ontario with clean electricity since 1958, and with today’s investment, we’re extending the life of the station for decades more to help Ontario meet its growing electricity needs,” said Todd Smith, Ontario’s Minister of Energy. “This refurbishment program – part of our Powering Ontario’s Growth plan – will create jobs and ensure we have the power we need for the next major international investment, the new homes we are building and industries as they grow and electrify.”

OPG will refurbish 16 units in total at the R.H. Saunders Generating Station. The refurbishment will include major rehabilitation of generating equipment through civil, electrical, and mechanical improvements that will see the station produce more electricity from less water. Once completed, the station is expected to produce up to 160 gigawatt hours of additional clean electricity each year, equivalent to powering over 19,000 homes.

The work at the R.H. Saunders Generating Station will take place over the next 16 years, creating more than 200 highly skilled and well-paid jobs in Cornwall.

OPG’s R.H. Saunders Generating Station in Cornwall is undergoing a refurbishment of its 16 units. (Credit: OPG)

“Since it first went into service in 1958, OPG’s R.H. Saunders station has played an important role in Ontario’s history. From powering a growing economy to managing flows in the St. Lawrence Seaway for shipping, this hydro stalwart has been invaluable to our province,” said Paul Seguin, senior vice president of Renewable Generation at OPG. “Once refurbished, it will electrify the lives of Ontarians for years to come.”

The R.H. Saunders Generating Station, located on the St. Lawrence River, is part of the larger Moses-Saunders Power Dam shared with the United States, and has been a reliable source of clean power for 65 years. The station currently meets about five per cent of Ontario’s power needs.

“Through the revitalization of OPG’s R.H. Saunders Generating Station, we’re not just renewing infrastructure; we’re fortifying Ontario’s energy future. This project stands as a testament to our commitment to sustainable, dependable power, ensuring generations ahead benefit from the legacy of clean energy,” said MPP Nolan Quinn.

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Featured image credit: New York Power Authority

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