Posted Oct 17, 2020 at 6:00 am.
A huge project of 700 million
An extremely rare project since the great years of construction of the North Shore dams, Hydro-Quebec has to pay 700 million to build a brand new transmission line. This very high voltage line will be used to meet the electricity demand in southern Quebec's major consumption centers.
Hydro-Quebec no longer had a choice. The electric transport corridor connecting the Manic-Outardes dams to the Quebec City region is already being fully utilized. The closure of the Tracy oil-fired power plant and the cessation of production at the Gentilly-2 nuclear power plant in recent years have reduced the electricity supply. Despite this, however, additional energy can now be diverted from the Côte-Nord as the electricity demand in this region is lower than what Hydro-Québec originally predicted.  To compensate for this loss of production and to maintain the robustness of its network, Hydro-Québec has chosen to build a 260 km line between the Côte-Nord and the Saguenay. La Presse visited the site, which will continue until the end of 2021. PHOTO MARTIN TREMBLAY, LA PRESSE
A group of 12 electricians are laying electrical cables. Jérôme Hovington, electrical foreman, and his team are installing the wires that will connect the control building to the facilities at the starting point of the new line.
Electricity comes from the Churchill Falls, Toulnustouc, Manic-3, Manic-5 and Outardes-4 power stations. Most of the hydroelectric production from the Manic-Outardes complex passes through it.
"The Micoua-Saguenay line is like adding an extra mesh in this spider web that is the Hydro-Quebec electrical distribution network," explains Dominic. Thibeault, site manager for Hydro-Quebec.
The starting point of the new transmission line will be anchored on a base of 40 cubic meters of reinforced concrete on which the two legs of the portal will be installed.
Mathieu Joseph worked on the site for two months. The entire work team is from the Gaspé, the members come every week from Paspébiac, on the Baie des Chaleurs, to work on the site. PHOTO MARTIN TREMBLAY, LA PRESSE
Concrete arrives from Baie-Comeau by road transport. Employees must act quickly as soon as the truck arrives to ensure the quality of the materials.
Two months after the scheduled date for the end of the first phase, work is progressing well and on schedule. Commissioning of the power line is scheduled for the end of 2021.
The Micoua-Saguenay substation will be one of the main nerve centers for electricity distribution in Quebec
Outardes-4 power station: a delicate emergency response
Routine work on the Outardes-4 hydroelectric power plant revealed a major problem in a turbine generator group. The problem: the stator. The turbine was quickly shut down and a Hydro-Quebec team is currently conducting a delicate emergency response.