OPG manages water flow to meet new regulatory requirements

existing infrastructure rehab to increase discharge capacity

Subject to new regulatory requirements established by the Province of Ontario, Ontario Power Generation (OPG) has contracted with Kiewit to significantly improve public safety and environmental protection in the event of large-scale flooding in the Kapuskasing, ON area.

The project will further sustain the generation and supply of renewable energy to customers beyond the immediate area.

Little Long Dam | photo credit O P G

The Little Long Dam manages the flow of the Mattagami River from northeast Ontario till it reaches the Arctic Ocean. Flooding risk is elevated in April through July, due to freshet, or ice and snow meltoff.

Upon completion, the dam safety project will have the expanded capacity to discharge a total flow of 8,680 cubic meters of water per second – about three times the amount of Niagara Falls.

More Efficiency, Less Risk

Existing infrastructure is being rehabilitated to increase discharge capacity from Adams Creek to a bypass channel that would protect OPG’s four Lower Mattagami River hydro-electric stations — Little Long, Smoky Falls, Harmon and Kipling.

Instead of constructing a new stand-alone four-gate spillway adjacent to the existing eight-gate spillway structure, Kiewit will integrate construction of four new gates into the existing Adam Creek sluiceway structure for more efficiency. Reducing the construction footprint also minimizes disturbances to operations and lessens risk.

The project will sequentially put gates in service from January, 2022 to September, 2023 and is planned to be completed by September, 2023.

Looking Ahead

As hydro-infrastructure across North America continues to age, rehabilitating hydro-structures and upgrading existing projects will most likely fuel the widespread transition to clean energy.

OPG continues to demonstrate that more value can be delivered from existing assets given the talent of both staff and industry partners who implement innovations that sustain environmental resources and energy supplies.

The collaborative relationship is key to implementing these solutions. “OPG continues to have a very healthy and open relationship with Kiewit throughout this project. We see us as #ONETEAM striving for a common goal,” says Pranav Jindal, OPG senior manager for northeast major projects.