Kemano T2 Project

Kemano T2 Project

Project Overview

The BC Works smelter in Kitimat is powered by the Kemano Powerhouse, which receives water from the Nechako Reservoir via a single tunnel that is over 60 years old.

Completion of a second tunnel will ensure the long-term reliability of the power supply from the Kemano Powerhouse, which powers Rio Tinto's BC Works smelter in Kitimat.

In December 2017, the Kemano T2 Project received final approval from Rio Tinto's Board. Project completion is expected by the end of 2020.

Rio Tinto will continue to operate the existing tunnel and monitor its condition until the T2 Project is completed, and on an ongoing basis.

 

To some, it’s called a Tunnel Boring Machine. To us, it’s tl’ughus, the giant monster snake that will borough into the mountain.

Contracting and employment opportunities

Frontier Kemper Aecon (FKA) has been selected to deliver the majority of the construction scope. As main contractor, FKA is responsible for hiring and managing the various subcontractors and employees who will be required to construct the project. Rio Tinto is working with FKA to ensure the maximum involvement of First Nations, and local and regional businesses and workforce in the project, subject to qualifications and availability.

At peak construction, the total construction workforce could be in the range of 300, however this number will vary and will depend on the final workforce plan. All workforce requirements will be arranged through the main contractor and through the Project Labour Agreement with the unions working on the project.

If you are interested in learning more about contracting and employment opportunities, please connect with our main contractor.

Rio Tinto has also engaged Hatch Ltd in an Engineering, Procurement, Construction Management (EPCM) role to manage project delivery.

Launching tl’ughus

Introducing tl'ughus

Rio Tinto together with the Haisla Nation and the Cheslatta Nation unveil tl'ughus, the Tunnel Boring Machine (TBM). Over the next approximately 18 months, tl'ughus will carve a 7.6 kilometre tunnel through the Kemano mountain range.

T2 Project site

T2 Project site

The Kemano mountain range, a rugged, yet pristine environment, is home to the T2 Project.

Avalanche control

Avalanche control

A Gazex system – a powerful, remote-controlled avalanche control system – has been installed atop Horetzky Mountain to mitigate avalanche risk during project construction.

Safety first

Safety first

All personnel, from management to day labourers, are required to undertake inductions when they arrive at site. Rio Tinto's Graham Geeraert provides an overview on health and safety protocols, environmental requirements, cultural awareness training, and more.

Protecting the environment

Protecting the environment

Mitigating our impact on the environment is a key focus during construction. As part of the Horetzky Road upgrade, exclusion fencing was installed to provide migratory access for coastal tailed frogs and western toads, at-risk and protected species in British Columbia.

Horetzky Landing

Horetzky Landing

Horetzky Landing has been prepared to accommodate construction activities associated with tunnel boring. A temporary camp has also been constructed to house workers and the project team overseeing the work.

Camp Kemano

Camp Kemano

The majority of workers will make their home at the Kemano camp which has been upgraded for the T2 Project. They will travel to the project site via the Horetzky Road (foreground).

Project site tour

Rio Tinto Aluminium's chief executive Alf Barrios tours the project site with T2 Project General Manager, Ben Fullerton.