MONTRÉAL, Aug. 26, 2016 /CNW Telbec/ - On the eve of National Energy Board (NEB) hearings in Montréal on the Energy East Pipeline proposal, a coalition of management and union stakeholders (the Coalition) expresses its support for the project.
The Association des constructeurs de routes et grands travaux du Québec (ACRGTQ), the Association industrielle de l'Est de Montréal (AIEM), the Association des firmes de génie-conseil – Québec (AFG), the Association des propriétaires de machinerie lourde du Québec (APMLQ), the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal (BTMM), the Conseil provincial du Québec des métiers de la construction (International), the Québec Employers' Council (QEC), the Fédération des chambres de commerce du Québec (FCCQ) and FTQ-Construction, believe that Energy East is very important for Québec's economic growth and its energy future. The Coalition believes the project deserves a pragmatic and realistic analysis. Moreover, the Coalition calls on citizens to take the time to find out more about the Energy East project, while taking into consideration all of its features, including its economic benefits.
Building our economy
In a context where stimulating our economy has become a necessity, where working hours have fallen by more than 40% in the industrial building sector and by nearly 30% in the civil engineering sector, the Coalition believes that Québec cannot overlook one of the larger construction projects to come along in some 25 years. The Coalition notes that very few national projects could generate and maintain, on an annual basis, over some nine years, more than 14,000 direct and indirect jobs. Nearly one quarter of those jobs would be in Québec during project development and construction. According to the Coalition, Energy East is indeed a job creator and arguments to the contrary don't hold water.
The Coalition notes that this private investment project will generate more than $10 billion in tax revenues, above and beyond all other economic benefits and it will contribute more than $50 billion to Canada's GDP.
Leveraging our expertise
The economic activity generated by an infrastructure project like Energy East will lead to the creation of new businesses and to the development of subcontractor networks that will remain active well after the pipeline is completed, as they export their know-how.
The Coalition believes that this project represents yet another opportunity to leverage the expertise of workers and businesses in Québec's construction industry. An expertise acquired over decades of work on large infrastructure projects throughout North America. From the installation of vast wind farms, to the design and commissioning of some of the larger hydroelectric installations on the planet, Québec know-how stands second to none. Younger workers will benefit from training, apprenticeships and mentoring. The importance, the scope and the leading edge requirements of Energy East, will make it a catalyst for the growth of our workforce and for the enhancement of its world class expertise.
Diversifying our energy supply
While it supports the energy transition that the Government of Québec has committed to, the Coalition reminds citizens that the consumption of petroleum will not come to an end any time soon. Legislators acknowledge that by 2030, hydrocarbons will still account for some 40% of our energy needs. We will therefore continue to rely on petroleum and its derivatives for transportation and other products we use daily, such as plastics.
Québec imports 100% of the petroleum it uses. The Coalition believes that Energy East is an opportunity to build a national market for locally produced oil, thereby increasing our refineries' competitiveness, while ensuring the stability and diversity of our energy supply.
Rarely do we see a project that can serve as a foundation for a society's economic development, as well as its energy future. Once it is completed, in accordance with principles of sustainable development and of social acceptance, Energy East will enable Québec to take on a myriad of challenges. The Coalition supports Energy East.
SOURCE Fédération des Chambres de commerce du Québec
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