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Infrastructure, Resource

Manitoba shutting down Selkirk Generating Station

Manitoba shutting down Selkirk Generating Station

SELKIRK, MAN. — Manitoba Hydro is shutting down its Selkirk Generating Station after 60 years of producing electricity.

Kept running as an emergency supply for southern Manitoba in cold months, the ongoing operation of the Selkirk Generating Station is now unnecessary with the completion of the Bipole III transmission line last year, the Manitoba–Minnesota Transmission Project this year and the Keeyask Generating Station forecast be running in the fall.

“Our system is such now that it no longer makes economic or environmental sense for Manitoba Hydro to maintain and operate the Selkirk station,” said Shane Mailey, vice-president of operations at Manitoba Hydro, in a press release. “We can supply more than enough power with our hydroelectric stations. We no longer need the extra capacity Selkirk Generating Station provides.”

Shutting down the natural gas-powered station is expected to save the province $5 million a year and lower average greenhouse gas emissions by about five kilotonnes annually.

“Closing it makes good economic and environmental sense — for the utility and for our customers,” Mailey added.

Of the 33 employees currently work at the Selkirk Generating Station some will be redeployed, and some will remain at the plant to operate critical functions such as security, maintenance, heating and fire protection.

“We’re working closely with the unions to redeploy staff according to provisions of our collective agreements,” Mailey said.

Full decommissioning will not be completed for several years. Provincial officials stated no decisions have been made about the physical footprint of the plant or the property it occupies.

The station was originally constructed from 1957 to 1960. Of the approximately 3,000 tonnes of structural steel required to build Selkirk Generating Station, over 2,300 tonnes were fabricated locally in the province.

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