At each step of a project, Hydro-Québec conducts technical and environmental studies to eventually determine the solution with the least impact.
When a project begins, Hydro-Québec first defines a study area, in which line routes and substation locations will be proposed.
This study area is then subject to detailed surveys and environmental analyses. For example, wetlands and forests are thoroughly identified and classified, as are wildlife and plant species. The soil is also characterized and any archeological potential is studied.
In parallel to these studies, Hydro-Québec launches a public participation process to take into consideration the comments and concerns of the host community.
Engineering activities determine the design parameters of the new equipment and comprehensively evaluate all of the technical possibilities.
Throughout a project, activities are defined more and more precisely to ultimately determine the line route or substation location with the least impact from an environmental and social point of view.
At the end of the draft design, the data gathered, the scenarios analyzed and the solution selected are set out in an environmental assessment.
Depending on their scale, projects are subject to various government authorizations, as determined by the Environment Quality Act.