Two giant stacks are a landmark along the north shore of Lake Erie but in the new year they’ll disappear. Right now Ontario Power Generation is demolishing the coal yard at the former Nanticoke Generating station. The plant burned its last piece of coal at the end of 2013 and over 40 000 tonnes of unused product has now been removed.
Two 650 feet tall smoke stacks with come down in February, the same way the Lakeview Generating Station was demolished a decade ago. The Nanticoke site will be redeveloped making way for a 44-megawatt solar farm. By 2020 once the demolition is complete the property will look completely different, the switch yard will be one of the few things that remain.
It’s bittersweet for those who worked here for decades. The station was built in the early 1970s and once employed 650 people. The McGuinty Liberals shut down the plant because of concerns over pollutants, looking for new sources of energy generated by wind and sunlight.
There is an open house in January to discuss the demolition and answer any questions the community may have. There about a dozen houses and cottages near the plant that will need to be evacuated as a precaution when the stacks come down, that is scheduled for February 28th as long as the whether cooperates and will be open to the public to view.