Private power generation: “It’s just the beginning,” Fitzgibbon says

Companies that will produce their own electricity could be more and more numerous, if Pierre Fitzgibbon is to be believed.

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The TES mega-hydrogen project in Shawinigan, where a large company produces its own electricity, could be the first of a series, if we go by the words of Minister Pierre Fitzgibbon.

According to an email obtained first by Radio-Canada and then by The newspaperPierre Fitzgibbon says the TES project “is just the beginning”.

Remember that Hydro-Québec will allocate a block of 150 megawatts (MW) of electricity to this project, and that TES will also produce its own electricity, that is, 800 MW with a wind farm and 200 MW with solar energy.

A break in the monopoly?

Environmental groups, such as Greenpeace and the Regroupement des organismes Environnementales en Énergie, are concerned about Hydro-Québec’s monopoly and believe that the TES project does not respect the law, in particular because it will be carried out in a territory where Hydro-Québec has exclusive distribution rights.

However, during the announcement, Minister Fitzgibbon mentioned that Hydro-Québec’s legislative framework allows for “self-generation where a company can have its wind turbines (or) its solar sites, which are directly connected in the factory”, adding that the TES The project is “perfectly in line with current regulations”.

A necessary contribution

Other experts see it as an interesting solution to cover the province’s electricity needs.

“Since Hydro-Québec does not have the capacity to meet the demand for economic development projects, it is normal for entrepreneurs to find other solutions,” explains Gabriel Giguère, public policy analyst at the Economic Institute of Montreal (IEDM).

“We must recognize that Hydro-Québec’s capacity is becoming an obstacle to our development, and that independent electricity production is increasingly necessary,” he adds.