SAGUENAY, Québec – GNL Québec is stunned by the notice issued by Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) earlier today concerning the Énergie Saguenay project and the choice of its site. The company strongly deplores the lack of consideration shown by the agency to the international best practices put forward for the project. This opinion could have important consequences that go well beyond the Énergie Saguenay project.
The report unfairly rejects technological innovations that have been proven to be effective. These have been developed and put forward to reduce the environmental impact of LNG Quebec’s activities, which intends to redefine the standards for reducing underwater noise, notably by:
- The use of vessels designed specifically for the project and equipped with the most effective noise reduction technologies;
- The measures taken in the Charter of Environmental Commitments for the protection of marine mammals;
- Upgrading vessels every five years and, where possible, equipping them with the latest technologies that have proven their effectiveness in improving their noise performance;
- Adapting navigation procedures to scientific advances to maximize vessel efficiency and reduce noise emissions.
“Although we understand that any current or additional activity on the Saguenay (cruises, ferries, cargo transport, observation, etc.) may constitute a risk to the recovery plan of the St. Lawrence beluga population, we have concluded that there is no recognition to the identification of innovative and proven solutions. With this notice, Fisheries and Oceans Canada is discouraging innovation. The consequences could extend well beyond the development of the Énergie Saguenay project by affecting the support granted to other projects with high human and economic added value, which contribute to the vitality of Quebec’s regions,” said Tony Le Verger, President of LNG Quebec.
It should be noted that concrete commitments have been made by GNL Québec to demonstrate its firm intention to develop the Énergie Saguenay project with the utmost respect for the environment and its communities.
Since 2014, GNL Québec has been developing carbon-neutral LNG export facilities in the Port of Saguenay. The Énergie Saguenay project includes two liquefaction trains, storage facilities and a marine shipping infrastructure. It will be the world’s first large-scale LNG export facility powered entirely by hydroelectricity, making it the cleanest and lowest GHG-emitting natural gas liquefaction plant in the world. In addition to providing immediate and lasting economic benefits to Quebec, this approximately C$9 billion project aims to help combat climate change in Europe, Asia and other parts of the world by providing a transitional energy source that can replace more polluting sources of energy, such as coal and oil. (photo Port of Saguenay)