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 BECANCOUR, Quebec, June 18 /PRNewswire/ -- Hydro-Quebec and the Societe en commandite, Projet de production combinee de Becancour (SCPPCB) signed a contract on June 10 for the purchase of electricity valued at $499.5 million (in 1993 dollars). The electricity will be produced in a plant using natural gas and gaseous hydrogen residues, the latter coming from the ICI Forest Products'(ICI) plant in Becancour. The 20-year contract calls for delivery to Hydro-Quebec by SCPPCB of more than 1 billion kilowatthours a year, corresponding to 135.8 megawatts. Construction is scheduled to begin in the spring of 1994 and deliveries from the plant are scheduled to begin in October 1995. SCPPCB will sell steam to companies in Becancour industrial park, such as ICI, Norsk Hydro and possibly to the planned Becancour agribusiness park. Becancour is approximately 150 kilometres northeast of Montreal and 15 kilometres east of Trois-Rivieres.
 The Becancour Cogeneration Plant - SCPPCB
 SCPPCB is a limited partnership of which TransAlta Energy Corporation of Calgary is the General Partner and majority owner. TransAlta Energy Corporation is in turn 100 percent owned by TransAlta Corporation which is also sole owner of TransAlta Utilities, which operates an electricity generation and distribution system in Alberta. TransAlta Energy Corporation specializes in the development and operation of cogeneration plants and has two plants in operation in Ontario. A minority portion of the SCPPCB shares are held by Co-Gen Holdings (Quebec) Inc.
 SCPPCB plans to build and operate in Becancour a natural-gas combined-cycle cogeneration plant that includes three LM6000 gas turbine generators and one steam generator. Each gas turbine will produce 42 megawatts of electricity, and the steam generator will produce 32 megawatts. The total electricity output from the plant can be called upon 12 months a year by Hydro-Quebec.
 The natural gas that fires the plant will come from long-term contracts with Alberta gas producers. It will be shipped to Becancour through the NOVA, TransCanada Pipelines Ltd and Gaz Metropolitan networks. ICI will also supply gaseous hydrogen residues for the project, for a minimum amount of 1095 metric tons a year. ICI and Norsk Hydro will purchase steam from the project through long-term contracts. And the companies located in the Becancour agribusiness park could also become major purchasers of the steam from this project.
 Economic benefits for Quebec
 In order to maximize the economic benefits for Quebec the contract with SCPPCB contains a clause requiring the developer to reach a cumulative objective of 60 percent Quebec content. This objective is to be reached within five years from the commercial start-up of the plant. For the region this project is a development advantage in terms of jobs and expertise. Moreover, like all cogeneration projects it represents a means of increasing industrial competitiveness, thanks to competitive conditions for the supply of steam.
 Independent power production: a dynamic sector in Quebec
 On November 6, 1992, Hydro-Quebec announced that it had retained for further negotiation six cogeneration projects of over 50 MW within the framework of its Limited Call for Proposals of May 1991 -APR-91. The contract with SCPPCB is the second of this group to have been signed, the first contract being signed on May 27, 1993 with SCCQ, the Societe en commandite de Cogeneration de Quebec.
 The SCPPCB contract brings to 19 the number of independent power production contracts signed to date, for a total of 661 MW. Negotiations are continuing with 71 projects, for a total of 1266 MW and there are 8 projects operating for a total of 43 MW: an overall status of 98 projects totaling 1971 MW. Hydro-Quebec is therefore well positioned to achieve its objective of having at its disposal 760 MW of independent power production by the end of 1996.
 -0- 6/18/93
 /CONTACT: Marcelle Trepanier, Communications et Relations publiques of Hydro-Quebec-Region Mauricie, 819-372-3696; Vic Heron of TransAlta Energy Corporation, at Montreal, Quebec, 514-397-4263; Lorne Christensen of TransAlta Energy Corporation, at Calgary, Alberta, 403-267-3831/

CO: Hydro-Quebec ST: Quebec IN: UTI SU: CON

MP -- NY039 -- 3569 06/18/93 12:31 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jun 18, 1993

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