A more energy-efficient building in Baie-Saint-Paul to reduce greenhouse gas emissions

News release

Baie-Saint-Paul, Quebec, August 30, 2019—Investing in green infrastructure helps communities reduce their carbon footprint and increase their resilience to climate change. It also helps safeguard public health, protect the environment and create a clean-growth economy.

The Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities, and Bill Karsten, President of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM), announced an investment that will enable the City to convert the heating system of the Petites Franciscaines de Marie convent complex from a fuel oil system to a forest biomass system. Operating under the name Maison Mère, this heritage building is currently owned by the City.

Reducing the building’s energy consumption, while transitioning to renewable energy, will reduce GHGs as well as Maison Mère’s energy bill. The project will also help diversify opportunities and support the forestry sector, which remains important and fluctuating in the Charlevoix region.

Biomass harvesting appears to be a new regional economic development opportunity made possible by the concentration of high demand around Maison Mère that could lead to the implementation of a heat distribution network able to serve other institutions or businesses.

The project is receiving financial support of $750,000 through the Municipalities for Climate Innovation Program (MCIP), delivered by FCM and funded by the Government of Canada.


“The Government of Canada recognizes that investing in green infrastructure contributes to building strong, healthy and sustainable communities. I am proud of the partnership that we have established with FCM, which will help the City of Baie-Saint-Paul reduce the ecological footprint of one of its facilities while stimulating economic growth in the region. Through investments like the one we are announcing today, together, we are building modern, resilient and green 21st century infrastructure.”

The Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities

“Our local governments are on the front lines of climate change. That means local action is critical. Municipalities of all sizes are modelling green solutions that can be replicated and scaled up across the country for deep national impact. Like the conversion to biomass heating project in Baie-Saint-Paul, which will improve the energy efficiency of the Maison Mère building and foster the region’s economic development. This is what today’s announcement is all about: orders of government working together to build better lives for Canadians.”

Bill Karsten, FCM President

“Baie-Saint-Paul is the first municipality in Quebec to adopt an Agenda 21 and has been working on the sustainable development of its area since 2006. We are currently implementing our third action plan with a GHG reduction plan, under which this project falls. When the City acquired this heritage building, the intention was not only to preserve a building rooted in the history of its development, but also to create a lever for regional economic development. We are very pleased to be announcing the first phase of this promising project.” 

Jean Fortin, Mayor of the City of Baie-Saint-Paul

Quick facts

  • The Municipalities for Climate Innovation Program (MCIP) helps municipalities and partner organizations by providing funding, training and information sharing. It is designed to encourage Canadian municipalities to better prepare for and adapt to the new realities of climate change as well as reduce greenhouse gas emissions. MCIP is a five-year $75-million program, delivered by the Federation of Canadian Municipalities and funded by the Government of Canada.

  • Through the Investing in Canada infrastructure plan, the Government of Canada is investing more than $180 billion over 12 years in public transit projects, green infrastructure, social infrastructure, trade and transportation routes, and Canada’s rural and northern communities.

  • $26.9 billion of this funding is supporting green infrastructure projects, including $5 billion available for investment through the Canada Infrastructure Bank.

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Ann-Clara Vaillancourt
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Infrastructure and Communities
Tel: 613-697-3778                           
Email: ann-clara.vaillancourt@canada.ca

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Email: media@fcm.ca

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