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The Québec government announces the establishment of a financial assistance program to enhance residual materials management in the northern territory

Press Release

QUÉBEC CITY, Aug. 10, 2018 – The Québec government is announcing the roll out of the Programme de gestion des matières résiduelles en territoire nordique (PGMRTN). The program has a $1-million budget allowance and is intended for local and regional governments in the northern territory isolated by the lack of road access. It will fund projects aimed at reducing the quantity of residual materials eliminated.

MNA for Ungava Jean Boucher made the announcement today on behalf of Minister of Sustainable Development, the Environment and the Fight Against Climate Change Isabelle Melançon.

Residual materials management in the northern territory poses challenges because the permafrost prevents the burial residual materials, which must be burned when they cannot be recycled. Moreover, the northern communities are isolated by the lack of road access and the great distances required to transport residual materials make recycling costs prohibitive. Lastly, the low population density in the communities also makes certain collection operations more complicated and costlier.

Accordingly, the new program will financially support municipal bodies and Aboriginal communities in launching projects related to residual materials management to enhance such management and thus reduce the quantities to be eliminated. It is part of the Québec Residual Materials Management Policy and is funded by the Green Fund.

Eligible organizations have until December 31, 2019 to submit applications. The grant awarded can reach 90% of expenses up to a maximum of $150 000 for a project carried out in the territory of a municipality or an Aboriginal community, and up to $250 000 for a project whose implementation takes place in more than one municipality or Aboriginal community.

“Municipal entities such as the Aboriginal communities can now better manage their residual materials and thereby enhance the quality of life of residents. The projects launched under the program will undoubtedly boost local and regional governments. They will engender significant economic and environmental spinoff and will enhance the safety and quality of life of residents.”

Jean Boucher, MNA for Ungava

“Regardless of where we live in Québec, residual materials are part of our daily lives and we have a collective duty to manage them effectively. The isolated municipal entities and Aboriginal communities in the northern territory are facing additional challenges in sound management and today’s announcement seeks to support them effectively in this respect. Together, let us soundly manage the residual materials that we produce, just as we would in the case of raw materials. We can quickly make a difference for the future of the green, low-carbon society that we want to bequeath to future generations.”

Isabelle Melançon, Minister of Sustainable Development, the Environment and the Fight Against Climate Change

“Residual materials management poses a daunting challenge for communities in the Nord-du-Québec region. Through this program adapted to conditions in northern communities, the situation will undoubtedly improve. I am convinced that through their expertise and desire to innovate, the communities will not only find viable solutions but that such solutions will inspire other northern communities. I wish them good luck.”

Luc Blanchette, Minister of Forests, Wildlife and Parks and Minister responsible for the Abitibi-Témiscamingue region and the Nord-du-Québec region

“Today we are making a concrete gesture to enhance the quality of life in local and Aboriginal communities in the northern territory. Our government is aware that the communities have specific needs from the standpoint of residual materials management. The support that we are offering them through the Programme de gestion des matières résiduelles en territoire nordique will facilitate the adoption of concrete solutions adapted to conditions in the communities. At the same time, we will improve the quality of the environment and ensure the health and safety of the population. Our government is working actively to enhance living conditions in these communities and this program is a perfect example of its efforts.”

Geoffrey Kelley, Minister responsible for Native Affairs

Highlights

  • The broadening of knowledge of residual materials management in Northern Québec was a preliminary stage to the establishment of the PGMRTN.
  • At the request of the Québec government, the Chaire en éco-conseil de l’Université du Québec à Chicoutimi (UQAC) conducted a study focusing on knowledge acquisition concerning residual materials management in Northern Québec. Completed in 2017, the study also allowed for an examination of viable solutions to the current management problems with a view to supporting local and regional governments in residual materials management and the reduction of the quantities eliminated. The study can serve as a model for project proponents wishing to take advantage of the PGMRTN, which is part of the Québec Residual Materials Management Policy funded by the Green Fund.

Related links

Complete information on the program, eligibility criteria, eligible expenses and application procedure is available on the MDDELCC website: www.mddelcc.gouv.qc.ca/matieres/territoire-nordique/index.htm. The UQAC study is also available at this address.

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