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Thermal Generation

Holyrood Video Capture

Power your knowledge: Watch and learn how the Holyrood Thermal Generating Station works.

Located in the Town of Holyrood and bordering Conception Bay South, the Holyrood Thermal Generating Station is a thermal generating facility that burns 0.7% sulphur fuel. Put in service in 1969, it consists of three turbines with a total generating capacity of 490 megawatts (MW).

As a major source of our province’s electrical energy, the Holyrood plant generates between 15% and 25% of the island’s electricity every year. More specifically, it produces more than three billion kilowatt hours of electricity in a single year and, if needed, has the capacity to generate up to 40% of the island’s annual energy needs. During peak production, the plant burns approximately 18,000 barrels of oil per day.

Environmental responsibility

As part of our commitment to protecting the environment and reducing emissions at our diesel and thermal generating facilities, we have invested heavily in environmental monitoring programs, operational controls, and fuel changes to ensure continual improvement in emissions at the Holyrood plant. We have also invested in a number of upgrades and initiatives focused on improving our environmental performance, including:

  • Implementing an emissions reduction strategy
  • Using cleaner fuel to reduce emissions
  • Optimizing overall plant efficiency through the use of state-of-the-art control and performance monitoring software to reduce air emissions and the amount of fuel consumed per kilowatt hour produced
  • Maintaining a comprehensive ISO 14001 Certified Environmental Management System
  • Minimizing the use of auxiliary power to improve conversion efficiency, generate more power for the fuel burned, and reduce air emissions
  • Operating five Ambient Air Monitoring stations in the surrounding communities
  • Using a Continuous Opacity Monitoring System to measure emissions density
  • Conducting regular stack emissions testing to measure particulate, metals, and sulphates in the stacks
  • Maintaining on-site treatment of all wastewater produced in the generation of electricity
  • Maintaining an Emergency Response Program to reduce environmental risk to the community and the environment
  • Using silencing equipment and improved operating procedures to reduce noise emissions

Community responsibility

As a member of the community, ensuring the Holyrood plant operates safely and efficiently is one of our top priorities. We track calls from the public regarding our operations and encourage you to let us know if you have any concerns or comments by contacting our Community Line at 709-229-7441 24-hours a day, seven days a week.

You can also voice your concerns to our Community Liaison Committee (CLC), established in 1998 to facilitate communication with Holyrood and Conception Bay South (CBS) area residents and government officials.

Made up of Holyrood and CBS town council representatives, a community representative, the Department of Environment and Conservation, the Health and Community Services Board (Eastern Region), and representatives from the Holyrood Generating Station, the CLC promotes open communication with area stakeholders and provides a forum for the community to discuss environmental or other issues relating to the plant’s operation.

The CLC meets bi-monthly and also has regular discussions with municipal officials from the town of CBS, the Department of Environment and Conservation, and the Health Health and Community Services Board to review concerns and compliance with environmental programs. The CLC also helps keep local residents informed about the environmental programs implemented in Holyrood to support our commitment to environmental responsibility and to the community.

Marine terminal

The Holyrood plant’s marine facility was constructed to provide access for the delivery of oil, which is used to generate electricity. Its infrastructure consists of a concrete deck supported on circular steel piles and a causeway supported on piled bents. The docking and unloading platform was designed to distribute the force of vessels approaching the platform. Although six to 10 vessels service the terminal annually, only one vessel can be accommodated at a time.

The Holyrood plant’s Marine Terminal Guidelines outline the operational requirements and emergency procedures for visiting ships, providing owners, operators, managers, charterers, and masters of tankers with necessary information regarding safety regulations, general conditions, terminal facilities, and available services. All ships visiting the port should be familiar with the guidelines in advance of arrival.

Open house and plant tours

Every year during Environment Week, which occurs during the first week of June, employees at the Holyrood plant host an Open House for anyone interested in finding out more about thermal generation. Details of the Open House are advertised in the local paper during the first week of June every year.

We also provide plant tours for the public. If you’re interested in arranging a tour, please email cmorgan@nlh.nl.ca or call 709-229-2189.