Quebec’s 2006-2015 Energy Plan (Stratégie énergétique 2006-2015) created expectations for renewable energy development in the Province. A commitment to 4000 MW of wind power production capacity, the signing of contracts with small hydro producers and ambitious GGE reduction targets all pointed to growth for the sector.
From May 2013 to April 2014, however, things seemed almost at a standstill. The government not only delayed concrete action in several files, but cancelled its own small hydropower development program. The RFP for the last 800 MW of wind power, awaited since late 2012, was not announced until November 2013, leaving the burgeoning manufacturing sector wondering about its chances of survival.
In the bioenergy sectors, government policies were inconsistent, on the one hand subsidizing the construction of biogas plants, on the other, providing no outlet for their end product. The Régie de l’énergie rejected Gaz Métro’s bid to inject gas produced by the St-Hyacinthe water treatment facility in its distribution network, a decision that dampened the sector’s hope of developing a market within Quebec within a relatively short time.
In the fall of 2013, the government set-up an Energy Commission that was to hear and take into consideration stakeholders’ suggestions before making recommendations to the government in anticipation of the next Energy Plan. These recommendations, submitted in February 2014, questionable on several counts, missed the mark on issues affected by the unforeseen and quite significant rise in gas and electricity prices in the US over the course of the winter.
Rather than supporting renewable energies, the government gave precedence to energy efficiency measures and to projects headed by public bodies. As a case in point, in the last RFP for wind power, Hydro-Quebec was awarded responsibility for developing 200 MW, notwithstanding its rather lukewarm attitude toward holding wind power assets. Quebec also appeared to lean toward fossil fuel development : it considered inverting its pipeline to import and refine oil sands crude and started discussing oil exploration on its own territory.
Speakers at our annual conferences often graciously make their presentations available. The following are the files of conferences presented in English. To download, please click on the item. For conferences presented in French, please click here.