Maritime Electric Charlottetown Thermal Generating Station Decommissioning
Maritime Electric’s Charlottetown Thermal Generating Station, also known as “the Plant,” which forms part of the Company’s facilities on Cumberland Street, is at the end of its useful life and the Company will be removing it from service through a Decommissioning Project. The Company received approval from the Island Regulatory and Approvals Commission (IRAC) to decommission the Plant and this work is scheduled for 2022 and 2023.
The Plant site is an important energy hub, as it also contains: (i) a 50 megawatt combustion turbine; (ii) a substation that serves the electrical load of the eastern side of Charlottetown and areas east of the City; and (iii) the Company’s Energy Control Centre (ECC), which operates PEI’s electricity grid, energy scheduling and after-hours customer service response. These vital functions will remain on-site continuing to serve customers and manage the Island grid. As part of this Decommissioning Project, the Company will plant more trees and improve the landscaping. For public safety and security reasons, the site will remain restricted and not be accessible by the public.
During the Decommissioning Project, there may be short-term inconveniences including noise, dust, vibration and increased traffic from contractors. The Company will work closely with contractors, businesses, residents and other stakeholders to contain the worksite and lessen the impact. With the decommissioning of the Plant, the Company will significantly reduce its carbon footprint.
View the full regulatory filing for this project.
Current Aerial Image of the Charlottetown Thermal Generating Station, known as “the Plant.”
Maritime Electric Charlottetown Thermal Generating Station (known as “the Plant”) Decommissioning – Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ):
What is the Decommissioning Project?
It includes the physical removal of the electrical generating units at the Charlottetown Thermal Generating Station (CTGS) as they have reached the end of their useful life. The two tallest smoke stacks on site (225 feet and 200 feet, respectively) will also be removed.
Why does the Plant need to be decommissioned?
The CTGS is at the end of its useful life and would need an extensive refurbishment to continue to operate safely and reliably. In addition, fast-starting generation (such as combustion turbines) are better suited to Maritime Electric’s capacity requirements. Also, the availability of the Bunker C fuel oil used to power the electrical generating units at the CTGS is declining as the industry is switching to cleaner fuel sources. With the decommissioning of the Plant, the Company will significantly reduce its carbon footprint.
When will it occur?
The Decommissioning Project timeline is as follows:
June 28, 2018 - Decommissioning Study & Cost Estimate Filed with IRAC
June 29, 2018 - Original Information Sheet Mailed to Residents
2018-2019 - Planning for the Site and Further Development of Proposed Project Plans
Sept. 19, 2019 - IRAC Issues Order 19-08, Approved Decommissioning Plan
2020-2021 - Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) Process (which includes stakeholder consultations)
Dec. 2020- Jan. 2021 - Seeking Resident Feedback
2022- 2023 - Proposed Full Demolition Work (if approved by IRAC; PEI Department of Environment, Water and Climate Change; and City of Charlottetown)
Summer- Fall 2023 - Site Remediation Work
What are the future plans for the property?
Maritime Electric does not intend to reduce its use of the site. The site will continue to house an electric power generating station (50 MW Combustion Turbine) and a substation that serves the electrical load for the eastern side of Charlottetown and areas east of the City.
What is the proposed work schedule?
It is proposed that the project work in 2022 and 2023 will take place between 7:00 am and 7:00 pm daily.
Will there be noise and dust from the Project and over what time frame?
Yes. There will be noise, vibration and dust associated with the Project. Maritime Electric will work with contractor(s) to perform a thorough cleaning inside the CTGS building, stacks, and structures to minimize the extent of the dust created. Maritime Electric will also employ engineering controls (e.g. water misters, etc.) to mitigate the amount of dust created. Monitoring of noise and dust will be completed throughout the project by an independent third party on behalf of Maritime Electric. Concerns including the mitigation and management of dust, vibration and noise will be included in a project specific Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), as well as contractor requirements, filed with the PEI Department of Environment, Water and Climate Change in 2021.
Are there environmental concerns?
The Company is in the process of filing an EIA with the PEI Department of Environment, Water and Climate Change in 2021, which will identify and address environmental issues that may be associated with this Project.
What safety precautions are being taken?
Considering the nature of the work, site location and proximity to residents, a key objective is to manage any health and safety risks for employees and residents. Maritime Electric will secure the demolition site with fencing and a security presence. Maritime Electric will also work with contractor(s) to make sure the Project follows all safety protocols and safety plans.
What will the area look like and what changes will residents see at the site?
The fence line will remain where it is currently located for public safety and security reasons. Changes to the site will include the removal of the smoke stacks. It is proposed that the main building will be removed from site. However, this is currently under review with IRAC.
How will the stacks be removed?
The Company will not be using explosives to remove the stacks. Instead, a mobile work platform will be used that can move up and down the height of stack to allow the stacks to be dismantled safely and methodically from the top down.
Who is doing this work?
The work will be tendered out to qualified contractors with experience in this area. Maritime Electric will select contractors who have a strong, proven track record with respect to health, safety and environmental management.
How will the community be kept informed?
Maritime Electric will continue to update residents and stakeholders with project developments via mail-out packages and via Maritime Electric’s website.