The city of Saint-Hyacinthe in southwestern Québec is gas supplier Gaz Métro’s first client municipality to have selected natural gas to fuel its municipal vehicles. The city recovers organic materials via biomethanization and uses the renewable natural gas produced to meet its energy needs. Gaz Métro announced this fall the signing of an agreement in principle with Saint-Hyacinthe for the purchase of it’s surplus renewable natural gas for injection into its distribution network.
This project was submitted to Québec’s Régie de l’énergie for approval. To date, it is the organic materials of citizens and businesses of the 23 municipalities taking part in the brown bin program that could be processed to supply the first municipal vehicle fleet with renewable natural gas, in addition of being the privileged source of energy to heat municipal buildings.
“In 2016–2017, once our biomethanation facility is fully operational, the city will make a significant annual profit, including savings of a half-million dollars in fuel and heating costs for municipal buildings and vehicles,” said Saint-Hyacinthe Mayor Claude Corbeil in an October press release (Gaz Métro). “By maximizing the reclamation of organic waste from brown bins, residents and agri-food businesses are taking a positive step for the environment and generating a source of income that the city will be able to use to improve services. Saint-Hyacinthe is proud to innovate with such green, profitable and sustainable practices.”
“Gaz Métro is proud to use its gas network for this promising project, to allow all its clients to take advantage of locally produced renewable natural gas,” states Martin Imbleau, Vice President, Development and Renewable Energies at Gaz Métro. “Choosing this energy to fuel vehicles is another step toward the intelligent and systematic recovery of organic materials in Québec, by creating an infinitely renewable cycle. We hope that this project will inspire many other municipalities to follow suit.”
Note that natural gas generates savings on fuel of up to 40% compared with diesel, in addition to reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions up to 25%. By opting for renewable natural gas (biomethane) as a fuel, GHG emissions decrease by more than 99.4%, considering the fuel’s complete life cycle.
Gaz Métro has been working with many partners and road transport companies since 2010 to make sure Québec carriers benefit from the major economic and environmental advantages of switching from oil products to natural gas. To date, there are 350 natural gas vehicles on Québec’s roads.
(Source: Gaz Métro)