October 15, 2015 - Press releases
Montreal, October 15, 2015 – Gaz Métro acquired the first offset credits ever generated in Québec in the cap-and-trade system for greenhouse gas emission allowances that was established by the Government of Québec and is linked to that of California (carbon market). The 161,510 offset credits purchased from Recyclage Écosolutions Inc. (RES) stem from the destruction of 81 tons of CFCs between 2009 and 2011. CFCs are powerful greenhouse gases (GHG) found in old refrigerators and other domestic cold appliances. The transaction, totalling $2 million, is in keeping with Gaz Métro's vision of ensuring compliance with the Québec-California carbon market while generating positive spinoffs in Québec. In fact, Gaz Métro signed an agreement with RES to acquire future offset credits that RES expects to produce.
"As part of its compliance with the carbon market regulation, Gaz Métro begins by encouraging our customers to reduce their natural gas consumption through our energy efficiency programs. Beyond that, GHG residual emissions must be offset in a variety of ways, including offset credits resulting from GHS reduction projects. We are thrilled to be concluding the first transaction involving 100% Québec credits. The carbon market and the fight against climate change are opportunities for Québec to move toward a greener economy, and we are proud to be a part of it," explains Stéphanie Trudeau, Vice President, Strategy, Communication and Sustainability at Gaz Métro.
"We are very proud to be the first Québec company to generate offset credits in the Québec carbon market. Our agreement with Gaz Métro is a key financial lever that will enable us to pursue our efforts in capturing and destroying refrigeration gases in tens of thousands of old refrigerators, the likes of which would otherwise largely be released into the atmosphere," shares Mathieu Fillion, Executive Director of RES, the first company in North America to extract and destroy the refrigeration gases in these appliances.
Opportunities to seize
The market for destroying these halocarbon gases is very promising in Québec. “There are opportunities to be seized in this still untapped market. Québec has set objectives for reducing GHG emissions. To achieve them, we will have to do more, particularly by promoting the destruction of HCFC or HFC based refrigerant gases. Harmonizing environmental standards and clean technology protocols with those of California would also be a concrete way to develop the Québec market,” recommends Arnold Ross, Technical Director at RES.
“Gaz Métro wants to do its part in the fight against climate change and help generate positive spinoffs for Québec. As such, we salute Québec-based companies like Recyclage ÉcoSolutions that invest and work to develop clean technology to reduce GHG emissions in Québec. Their efforts should be supported so they can do even more,” adds Stéphanie Trudeau of Gaz Métro.
A transaction that also benefits Gaz Métro customers
Not only will this agreement with RES help reduce GHGs and stimulate Québec's green economy, it will also minimize the compliance costs that Gaz Métro customers have to pay. In fact, the cost of offset credits acquired from RES is less than the cost of emission units sold during the last auction organized by the governments of Québec and California. “Conducting the most profitable transactions for our customers was also a key factor in concluding this agreement with RES. We have therefore successfully lowered costs while investing in Québec's green economy, concretely illustrating the positive spinoffs of the carbon market,” adds Vincent Pouliot, Carbon Market and Energy Efficiency Manager.
About Gaz Métro
With more than $6 billion in assets, Gaz Métro is a leading energy provider. It is the largest natural gas distribution company in Québec, where its network of over 10,000 km of underground pipelines serves more than 300 municipalities and more than 195,000 customers. Gaz Métro is also present in Vermont, producing electricity and distributing electricity and natural gas to meet the needs of more than 305,000 customers. Gaz Métro is actively involved in the development and operation of innovative, promising energy projects, including natural gas as fuel and liquefied natural gas as a replacement for higher emission-producing energies, the production of wind power, and the development of biomethane. Gaz Métro is a major energy sector player that takes the lead in responding to the needs of its customers, regions and municipalities, local organizations and communities while also satisfying the expectations of its Partners (Gaz Métro inc. and Valener) and employees.
About Recyclage ÉcoSolutions Inc.Specializing in the management and recycling of appliances and equipment containing halocarbons, Recyclage ÉcoSolutions Inc.'s mission is to develop and implement clean technology for the optimal and safe recycling of cooling appliances and for the destruction of refrigerant gases and blowing agents. The company operates plants in Québec, Manitoba and Saskatchewan. For more information, visit www.recyclageeco.com.