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Québec, June 3rd 2008 – The Bureau d’audiences publiques sur l’environnement (BAPE) is holding an information session on the Projet de parc éolien de Gros-Morne à Saint-Maxime-du-Mont-Louis et à Sainte-Madeleine-de-la-Rivière-Madeleine par Cartier énergie éolienne inc. This session, which the proponent will be attending, will be hosted by a representative of the BAPE and will be held on June 19th, beginning at 7:30 p.m., at the Centre sportif, 3, rue de l’Église, in Gros-Morne. The purpose of the information session is to allow citizens to obtain information on the project, the environmental impact assessment study and review procedure, the public consultation process, as well as the role of the BAPE. This information session is being held as part of the mandate entrusted to the BAPE by Madam Line Beauchamp, Minister of Développement durable, Environnement et Parcs. The BAPE must make available to the public the impact assessment study and entire file related to the project. The public information and consultation period begins today June 3rd and will end on July 18th 2008.

It is during this 45-day period that citizens, groups, municipalities or organizations can submit a request for public hearing to the Minister of Développement durable, Environnement et Parcs. If necessary, a commission of the BAPE could be mandated to make inquiry on the project and to consult the public on this subject.


Citizens can learn more about the project by consulting the impact assessment study prepared by the proponent and the other documents describing the project and, among other things, its repercussions on the environment. Starting today and until July 18th 2008, these documents can be consulted at the following locations:

  • Caisse Populaire Desjardins Mer et Montagnes, 144, rue Principale, Madeleine-Centre ;
  • Conseil de la Nation Micmac de Gespeg, 783, boulevard de Pointe-Navarre, Gaspé ;
  • Secrétariat Mi’gmawei Mawiomi, 2, Riverside West, Listuguj.

The entire file is also available at the BAPE office in Quebec City, 575, rue Saint-Amable, bureau 2.10, at Bibliothèque centrale de l’Université du Québec à Montréal, Pavillon Hubert-Aquin, 1255, rue Saint-Denis, local A-M100, as well as on the BAPE website at, under the heading “Mandats en cours”.


Citizens are invited to examine the file, to act as experts in their community by underscoring the issues related to the project, to ask questions during the information session, and to record their comments in the registers opened for this purpose at the consultation centres.


Any person, group, organization or municipality wishing a public discussion and evaluation of the project may submit a request for public hearing during the public information and consultation period. This request must be sent in writing no later than July 18th 2008 to Madam Line Beauchamp, Minister of Développement durable, Environnement et Parcs, 675, boulevard René-Lévesque Est, 30e étage, Québec (Québec) G1R 5V7. The applicant must indicate the reasons for his request and his interest in relation to the milieu affected by the project.


The BAPE is a public information and consultation body that allows citizens to express themselves on a project and to intervene in the decision-making process leading to the authorization or denial of a project. The BAPE carries out the mandates that it receives from the Minister of Développement durable, Environnement et Parcs, notably the public information and consultation mandate lasting 45 days and the public hearing mandate lasting a maximum of 4 months.

Persons wishing to obtain more information can get in touch with Louise Bourdages at 418 643-7447 or toll-free, at 1 800 463-4732 extension 532, or by e-mail at the following address:

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Source: Marielle Jean, communications advisor



The project proposed by Cartier énergie éolienne inc. consists of building a wind turbine park with a rated capacity of 211.5 MW on lands in the domain of the State. The Gros-Morne wind energy project was chosen during the first call for tenders of Hydro-Québec Distribution held in 2003. This project provides for the installation of 141  wind turbines, each having a rated capacity of 1.5  MW, distributed over a surface area of 7,134 ha. Phase  I of the project would have 67 wind turbines, including 34 in Saint-Maxime-du-Mont-Louis and 33 in Sainte-Madeleine-de-la-Rivière-Madeleine. The 74 wind turbines of Phase II would all be located in Sainte-Madeleine-de-la-Rivière-Madeleine.

The construction of the park would include, among other things, the clearing and stripping of the surface soils, the improvement and construction of access roads, the installation of aerial and underground power transmission lines and wind measurement masts, the construction of the connection substation and the setting up of a 230 kV power transmission line to integrate the electricity production of the wind turbine park to the Hydro-Québec network. The contract for the purchase of electricity by Hydro-Québec will last for 21 years for Phase I and 20 years for Phase II. At the end of these contracts and if they are not renewed, all of the aboveground equipment would be dismantled and removed, and the site would be restored.

The timetable proposed in the impact study mentions that the work for Phase I would begin in the spring of 2010 and end in December 2011, with work for Phase II commencing in 2011 and ending in 2012.


The clearing work prior to the construction of the wind turbines, the connection substation and the roads totals 357.7 ha, namely 5% of the park’s surface area. During the dismantlement phase, the proponent undertakes to reforest the surface areas used for the project’s infrastructures. The result would be limited repercussions on the tree stands. The clearing work would also have an impact on nesting birds due to the noise and the presence of workers and machinery, but according to the proponent, the small size of the surface area used for construction activities and the intermittent, brief and limited nature of the noise produced, would constitute a small impact. Still according to the proponent’s evaluation, the clearing work would also result in a change having limited repercussions on the habitat of birds and bats. As for the visual impacts, the wind turbines would only be partially visible from a distance and in small number in relation to the few viewpoints affected. The proponent undertakes to prepare and implement an environmental monitoring program during the operating phase of the wind turbine park, notably for avian wildlife, the sound climate and the landscape.

According to the impact study, no watercourse crossing point among the twenty to be built would be established within 50 m upstream of a spawning ground so as to limit the impacts on the fish habitat. Underground transmission lines crossing the watercourses would be buried in fill above the culvert wherever possible. Still according to the impact study, the groundwater, the areas sensitive to human activities and the plant species having a special status would not be subject to significant impacts associated with the project. The residual impacts on the physical and biological environments, notably the soils, the surface water, the forest stands and the wildlife are deemed minor by the proponent.

As mitigation measures, some snowmobile and ATV trails would be relocated and measures would be taken so that residents and vacationers can have access to their chalets/cabins at all times. In addition, work would be suspended during the week of moose hunting.

Since the project is located in a forest environment, the increase in the ambient noise level during the carrying out of the work would have a minor impact on residents. As for the noise emitted by a wind turbine park, the sound levels produced, at a given reception point, must not exceed 45 dBA during the day and 40 dBA at night. The park has been configured in such a way as to ensure that no person outside the single-family dwellings or the chalets/cabins will perceive more than 40 dBA at all times, in part owing to the fact that a distance of more than 500  m was maintained between the dwellings and the wind turbines when the project was designed.

The project would have a major positive impact at the socioeconomic level, notably through the creation of approximately 200 jobs during the construction phase and 20 permanent jobs during the operating phase. Moreover, the project’s cost is evaluated at approximately $288 million, more than 60% of which would be spent in the region as stipulated in the conditions of the call for tenders, namely in the RCM of Matane and in the administrative region of Gaspésie–Îles-de-la-Madeleine.

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