Rio Tinto plants to invest in its Canadian aluminum smelters to improve production efficiency through modernization and expansion. The bulk of this new $758 million investment will be spent on completing the first phase of the AP60 plant in Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean, Quebec. Rio Tinto will also invest an additional $300 million for further construction in preparation for the $2.5 billion modernization of the Kitimat smelter in British Columbia. The Kitimat project will increase the smelter's current production capacity by more than 48% to approximately 420,000 metric tons per year.
The first phase of the AP60 plant will have 38 pots and an annual production capacity of 60,000 metric tons of aluminum by 2013. AP60 is the latest generation of AP technology, which was developed by Rio Tinto Alcan and is designed to improve energy efficiency and reduce costs of aluminum production. The modernized Kitimat smelter will be powered exclusively by hydroelectricity and use AP technology to reduce its emissions intensity by more than 50% per year.
Rio Tinto to Modernize, Expand Canadian Aluminum Smelters
December 15, 2010