Energy transition: Two thirds of natural gas may come from renewable sources in Quebec by 2030
November 20, 2018 - Press releases
MONTREAL, November 20, 2018 – In an effort to assess the potential quantity of renewable natural gas (RNG) in Quebec and determine the role that it could play in the energy transition, the consortium of WSP Canada and Deloitte conducted a study to evaluate the technical and economic potential for RNG production in Québec between now and 2030. This study, which was requested by Énergir, was overseen by a steering committee of key industry players. This group of experts included the Chair in Energy Sector Management – HEC Montréal, the Quebec Forest Industry Council, Énergir, RECYC-QUÉBEC and the Union des producteurs agricole.
The results of the study are very promising, as they show that as of 2018, the technical and economic potential amounts to 25.8 million GJ, which corresponds to 12% of the volume of natural gas currently distributed by Énergir in Québec. By 2030, this percentage could increase fivefold through the implementation of developing technologies, reaching two-thirds of the current volume, ie 144.3 million GJ. These potential figures take into account an average purchase price for RNG of $15/GJ. RNG presents an opportunity for Quebec to contribute to the energy transition.
Highlights of the study on Quebec's potential for RNG production
- The technical and economic potential by 2030 is substantial and RNG consumption could reach 66% of the current consumption of natural gas by that date.
- The technical and economic potential is the proportion of organic waste that can economically be transformed into RNG under the current market conditions, but without taking into account all aspects of the business environment, which will determine whether a project will be completed (eg competition over organic waste).
- By 2030, all regions of Quebec present a technical and economic potential for RNG production using local organic waste (existence of a forest industry, agricultural area, etc.)
- Reaching the full technical and economic RNG production potential will depend on key factors such as the implementation of an environment favorable to the emergence of RNG projects, and the concerted effort of local players.
- With regard to greenhouse gases (GHGs), reaching these volumes of RNG by 2030 by replacing natural gas produced outside Quebec would equate to taking 1.5 million cars off the road per year, thereby preventing more than 7.2 Mt of GHG emissions.
- "WSP is proud to have led this study while working closely with a large panel of stakeholders through substantive and constructive dialogue. The various findings, obstacles and opportunities that were identified provide a solid foundation for discussions regarding the future of the energy transition in Québec. It was a very rewarding experience!” Olivier Joyal, Vice President, Environment
- "Against the backdrop of energy transition, this study has initiated a collective discussion regarding the potential of Québec's renewable natural gas sector,” said Gildas Poissonnier, Senior Manager of Sustainability and Climate Change at Deloitte. “It's a great starting point for an informed dialogue among the key players in energy, economic and regional development in Quebec.”
- "Énergir is extremely proud to have participated in this study. The conclusions are clear: the energy potential is real. Renewable natural gas would greatly contribute to achieving GHG reduction targets and we have to collectively seize this innovation opportunity in Québec. It is also a preferred driver for energy transition in more advanced countries like Sweden and Denmark. Europe has seen strong growth of RNG, and we firmly believe that Québec should take the lead in this sector in North America,” maintained Sophie Brochu, President and Chief Executive Officer of Energize.
About WSP Canada
WSP is one of the world's leading professional services consulting firms. We are dedicated to our local communities and propelled by international brainpower. We are technical experts and strategic advisors including engineers, technicians, scientists, project managers, planners, surveyors and environmental specialists, as well as other design and program management professionals. We design and deliver lasting solutions in the Buildings, Transportation, Infrastructure, Oil & Gas, Environment, Geomatics, Energy, Resources and Industry sectors as well as project delivery and strategic consulting services. With over 8,000 talented people across Canada and 43,000 globally, we engineer projects that will help societies grow for generations to come.
Deloitte provides audit & assurance, consulting, financial advisory, risk advisory, tax and related services to public and private clients spanning multiple industries. Deloitte serves four out of five Fortune Global 500® companies through a globally connected network of member firms in more than 150 countries and territories bringing world-class capabilities, insights and service to address clients' most complex business challenges. To learn more about how Deloitte's approximately 264,000 professionals—9,400 of whom are based in Canada—make an impact that matters, please connect with us on LinkedIn, Twitter or Facebook.
Deloitte LLP, an Ontario limited liability partnership, is the Canadian member firm of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited. Deloitte refers to one or more of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited, a UK private company limited by guarantee, and its network of member firms, each of which is a legally separate and independent entity. Please see www.deloitte.com/about for a detailed description of the legal structure of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited and its member firms.
With more than $7 billion in assets, Énergir is a diversified energy company whose mission is to meet the energy needs of its 520,000 customers and the communities it serves in an increasingly sustainable way. In Quebec, it is the leading natural gas distribution company and also produces, through its subsidiaries, electricity from wind power. In the United States, through its subsidiaries, the company operates in nearly fifteen states, where it produces electricity from hydraulic, wind and solar sources, in addition to being the leading electricity distributor and the sole natural gas distributor in Vermont. Énergir values energy efficiency and invests both resources and efforts in innovative energy projects such as renewable natural gas and liquefied and compressed natural gas. Through its subsidiaries, it also provides a variety of energy services. Énergir hopes to become the partner of choice for those striving toward a better energy future.
Renewable natural gas production in Québec: A key driver in the energy transition
Assessment of technical and economic potential in Québec (2018–2030) (PDF)
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