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Quebec rejects $14-billion natural gas project in Saguenay over environmental issues

Last Updated Jul 21, 2021 at 1:22 pm PDT

Quebec Environment Minister Benoit Charette speaks to the media at a news conference Friday, April 23, 2021 in Montreal.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz

Quebec is rejecting a $14-billion natural gas project proposed for the province’s Saguenay region.

Environment Minister Benoit Charette told reporters today the government is not convinced the project would lead to a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.

He adds that the government is worried it would discourage natural gas buyers in Europe and Asia from moving to cleaner energy sources. 

GNL Québec had proposed to build a plant in Port Saguenay, Que., about 220 kilometres north of Quebec City, to liquefy natural gas carried by a 780-kilometre pipeline from Western Canada.

Several environmental groups and Indigenous communities had criticized the plan. 

GNL Québec had said the project would lead to an overall reduction in greenhouse gas emissions because natural gas would replace dirtier fuels like coal and oil. Quebec’s environmental review board, however, said in March those estimates were unlikely. 

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 21, 2021. 

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This story was produced with the financial assistance of the Facebook and Canadian Press News Fellowship.

The Canadian Press