The Quebec Government and aluminium producer Alcoa have approved the next phase of the five-year, $2.1bn investment plan for the overhaul of the Baie-Comeau, Deschambault and Becancour smelters in Quebec, Canada.

The aluminum smelters will now enter into the last engineering phase of the modernisation project.

The plan will increase the total production capacity by 120,000tpa and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

The old smelting pots at Baie-Comeau smelter, which use Soderberg technology, will be replaced with a new electrolysis potline developed by Alcoa with an annual production capacity of 160,000t.