Ontario Newsroom

Converting Atikokan Generating Station to Biomass

Archived Backgrounder

Converting Atikokan Generating Station to Biomass

The Atikokan Generating Station will become the first Ontario Power Generation-owned facility to be converted from coal to biomass. It will be one of the largest biomass-fired electricity generating facilities in the world.

The conversion is expected to create up to 200 construction jobs and help protect existing jobs at the plant. The converted plant will be able to deliver more than 200 megawatts of clean, renewable power.

The Atikokan Generating Station is the largest industrial employer in Atikokan and provides significant municipal revenues.

Under the terms of the agreement to convert the station, the biomass must be sourced from Ontario's forests and processed in Ontario. The procurement will provide a new market for waste fibre and act as a catalyst for a larger biomass industry in Ontario. Wood pellets will be made primarily from unused and underutilized species, non-marketable wood, forest residue and sawmill residue.

Life cycle greenhouse gas emissions from biomass are about 90 per cent less than coal. Biomass is a very flexible renewable generation source that can provide power on demand. The plant will be able to ramp its generation up and down very quickly to meet changes in northern Ontario's electricity demand.

Additional Resources

Media Contacts



Environment and Energy Jobs and Employment Rural and North Consumers