Today the Honourable Josée Verner, Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, President of the Queen's Privy Council for Canada and Minister for La Francophonie and Minister responsible for the Québec City Region, Ms. Line Beauchamp, Minister of Sustainable Development, Environment and Parks, and Mr. Sam Hamad, Minister of Employment and Social Solidarity and Minister responsible for the Capitale-Nationale region of Québec, announced support for a major Green Infrastructure Project in Québec City (the "Project"). The Project represents a global investment of $57 million and will create more than 450 direct and indirect jobs in the region.
The Project involves the construction of an organic waste treatment facility, including biomethanization and composting equipment. In its first five years of operation, it is expected the facility will be capable of treating up to 70% of the organic waste produced by the entire population of Québec City. Once at full capacity, it will treat up to 85,000 tonnes of organic waste previously destined to incineration. Biomethanization is the process of decomposing biomass with anaerobic bacteria to produce biogas, a Green Fuel that can displace fossil fuels in automotive or home heating applications.
Of the overall investment, the Government of Canada has committed to contribute close to $17 million, or up to one third of eligible costs. The federal contribution to the Project will be provided through the new, $1-billion, five-year, nation-wide Green Infrastructure Fund, which is part of Canada's Economic Action Plan announced in the January 2009 Budget. The Green Infrastructure Fund supports sustainable energy generation and transmission, as well as wastewater treatment and solid waste management at the municipal level.
As for the Government of Québec, it is to fund approximately $17.7 million of the Project. The provincial contribution is being granted under the province's Program for the Treatment of Organic Matter through Biomethanization and Composting (French-only) (the "Program") which benefits from a total investment of about $650 million, of which at least $187 million is to come from the Government of Québec. Projects funded under the Program are to create approximately 5,200 direct and indirect jobs. The Program aims to implement one of the major components of Québec's new Management of Residual Materials Policy (French-only) by progressively banning the landfilling of organic matter by 2020, while contributing to the achievement of the province's GHG emissions reduction target.
Québec City Mayor Régis Labeaume announced that the remainder of the Project's cost will be borne by the City.
The federal government is also evaluating other biomethanization projects to be undertaken in the province of Québec under the Green Infrastructure Fund. The total federal investment in these biomethanization projects could reach more than $170 million.