Rio Tinto | The study of a wind project still “really preliminary”, says its boss

Rio Tinto Aluminum could develop its own wind projects to meet its growing energy needs in the future, but the study of this solution is still “really preliminary,” says global CEO Jérôme Pécresse.

“We are considering, but it is a preliminary stage, to see if we can carry out onshore wind projects in the Saguenay–Lac-Saint-Jean region which would be integrated either directly into our electricity network, or into the network of Hydro-Québec,” confirms the manager in a press scrum on Monday, on the sidelines of a speech to the Canadian Club of Montreal.

Rio Tinto plans to build a wind farm near its Chutes-des-Passes dam, but the project is still far from being confirmed, Mr. Pécresse adds. “It’s still really preliminary,” he replies. We start taking wind measurements. So, it’s really not advanced at all. »

With its network of six dams in Quebec, Rio Tinto produces the equivalent of nearly 90% of the consumption of its aluminum activities in the province. However, the multinational expects its energy needs to increase in the future.

“Our needs will grow because we aim, I would say, to gradually try to increase production a little. […]. Secondly, if we decarbonize things like the Vaudreuil alumina refinery (which uses fossil energy) with electricity, our needs are clearly set to grow. »

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