Ambatovy Nickel power station

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Ambatovy Nickel power station is an operating power station of at least 120-megawatts (MW) in Ampitambe, Alaotra-Mangoro, Toamasina, Madagascar.


Table 1: Project-level location details

Plant name Location Coordinates (WGS 84)
Ambatovy Nickel power station Ampitambe, Alaotra-Mangoro, Toamasina, Madagascar -18.20196, 49.35628 (exact)

The map below shows the exact location of the power station.

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Unit-level coordinates (WGS 84):

  • Unit 1, Unit 2, Unit 3: -18.20196, 49.35628

Project Details

Table 2: Unit-level details

Unit name Status Fuel(s) Capacity (MW) Technology Start year Retired year
Unit 1 operating coal - unknown 40 subcritical 2011
Unit 2 operating coal - unknown 40 subcritical 2011
Unit 3 operating coal - unknown 40 subcritical 2011

Table 3: Unit-level ownership and operator details

Unit name Owner
Unit 1 Ambatovy Nickel Project JV [100.0%]
Unit 2 Ambatovy Nickel Project JV [100.0%]
Unit 3 Ambatovy Nickel Project JV [100.0%]

Project-level captive use details

  • Captive industry use (heat or power): other metals & mining
  • Captive industry: Power


Ambatovy Nickel power station is a three-unit coal-fired power plant with a total capacity of 120 MW, powering the operations of the Ambatovy nickel mine. The plant was completed in 2011, and was originally owned by a joint venture of Sherritt International, Sumitomo, Korea Resources Corp. (KORES), and SNC-Lavalin. The mine's commercial operation was achieved in 2014. The mined ore is transferred to an on-site ore preparation plant for separating laterite from waste and mixing water to it to produce ore slurry. The ore slurry is fed through a pipeline system that links the mine to the processing plant located 220km away and 11km south of the Port of Toamasina.[1][2]

In 2015, partner SNC-Lavalin sold its participation in Ambatovy’s capital to Sumitomo Corporation.[3] Sherritt reduced its share in Ambatovy’s capital from 40% to 12% in 2017, and then to nothing in 2020.[4]

Ambatovy halted nickel production for a year due to national COVID-19 lockdown restrictions.[4]

In August 2020, the South Korean government announced plans to sell its stakes in 'loss-making' mines', including the Ambatovy plant. As of April 2022, however, the new President Yoon Suk-yeol has chosen to rescind this motion and instead invite private-sector companies to lead international energy projects in the government's stead.[5]

A 2022 journal article published in Nature Sustainability claims that the Ambatovy Nickel power station will be the first mine in the world to fully offset deforestation and biodiversity losses caused by its processes.[6] This "controversial accolade" involves many caveats and lacks concrete evaluation. Representatives from Ambatovy are in support of the study and say that they are committed to acting responsibly, despite claims of odor and water pollution connected to the plant.[7]

Articles and Resources


  1. "History of the project," Ambatovy, accessed May 27, 2021
  2. "Ambatovy Nickel-Cobalt Project," NS Energy, accessed May 27, 2021
  3. "SNC-Lavalin exercises its option to sell its interest in Madagascar’s Ambatovy Nickel Project," SNC-Lavalin, September 30, 2015
  4. 4.0 4.1 "Madagascar's Ambatovy restarts nickel production," S&P Global, March 26, 2021
  5. Global, K. E. D. "S.Korea to scrap plans to sell Ambatovy mine stake". KED Global. Retrieved 2022-05-25.
  6. Devenish, K., Desbureaux, S., Willcock, S. et al. On track to achieve no net loss of forest at Madagascar’s biggest mine. Nat Sustain (2022).
  7. "Is a Madagascan mine the first to offset its destruction of rainforest?". the Guardian. 2022-03-09. Retrieved 2022-05-25.

Additional data

To access additional data, including an interactive map of coal-fired power stations, a downloadable dataset, and summary data, please visit the Global Coal Plant Tracker on the Global Energy Monitor website.