Boost for farmers

Coup de pouce aux agriculteurs

Almost 1000 producers in the greenhouse will benefit from new electricity rates shortly, confirmed the government on Friday.

All producers of greenhouses, of which the consumption is equivalent to 50 kilowatt/hour will be eligible for a rate of 5.59 cents per kilowatt/hour (kW/h). Previously, this rate was offered only to the producers whose power was at least 300 kW.

The announcement was made Friday by the minister of Energy and natural Resources, Jonatan Julien, and his colleague of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, André Lamontagne, in the company of the CEO of Hydro-Québec, Sophie Brochu, and the president of the Producers in greenhouses in Québec, André Mousseau.

A request in this regard will be tabled before the Régie de l’énergie, who is responsible for the decision to authorize or not the new rate, but the minister Jonatan Julien said have confidence that it will be accepted, while emphasizing the independence of the administrative tribunal.

This new tariff would allow producers in greenhouses to save not less than 40 % on their annual cost of energy approximately $ 30,000 on an annual consumption at the price of 75 000 $.

The government Legault has committed to double the area cultivated in the greenhouse in Quebec.

For the owners of the Shelter, plant a vegetable farm, in the Cantons-de-l’est, Frédéric Jobin-Lawler and Annie Lévesque, the announcement of Quebec is ” a good thing for [their] current facilities “.

Frédéric Jobin-Lawler and Annie Levesque of The Shelter plant organically grown in the greenhouse greet the new electricity rates announced Friday by the government.

Lines in three-phase

They lament, however, that the lines of power in three-phase, needed to deliver a sufficient quantity to meet the industrial needs of a farm, do not make it even to their own.

“Projects of expansion to scale family to farm in the winter of beautiful and delicious organic vegetables in the open ground are in motion for the past two years, but to do this, we will need a boost from Hydro-Quebec to carry the three-phase, which is currently about 1 km away from us,” they explain.

In this regard, the minister of Agriculture, André Lamontagne, recalled that the government had set aside a sum of $ 15 million to further deploy its three-phase network in the province. Additional sums may also be added, he said.

The member of parliament for Québec solidaire, Christine Labrie has responded by insisting on the importance of expanding the envelope dedicated to the deployment of the three-phase network in the province.

“[Today’s announcement remains a not shy, because the reality is that many producers do not even have access to hydro-electricity, and still need to heat their greenhouses with fossil fuels, ” she said, by way of a press release.

– With Francis Halin, The Journal de Montréal

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