SÉMECS President and Varennes Mayor Martin Damphousse today reviewed the progress made so far on the organic matter biomethanation and composting centre to be located in Novoparc in Varennes, with start-up planned for late 2016/early 2017. During the media conference, he also launched promotional tools: an information video and an architectural rendering of the new centre. “Since we announced the awarding of the grant in January 2014, the project has progressed greatly. Today, we are happy to present the steps we have begun and to publicize the communication tools that will be made available to the population of the three member regional county municipalities (RCMs) so that the public can learn more about the organic matter processing centre,” SÉMECS President Damphousse said.

In the months following the grant announcement, the SÉMECS board of directors, formed of representatives from each RCM and the private partner, Biogaz EG, implemented a rigorous process to select the technological solution provider. Following a call for tenders, several bids were analyzed, and the final choice was the consortium of CCI BioEnergy Inc. (Ontario) and BTA International GmbH (Germany). The latter is a group that has been developing and operating biomethanation centres for over 30 years. Furthermore, in December 2014, SÉMECS authorities confirmed the acquisition of the land where the biomethanation processing centre will be built. That land belongs to Hydro-Québec and is across from the company GreenField Ethanol Québec in Varennes more than a kilometer from the residential zone.

During the media conference, SÉMECS President Damphousse also presented communication tools developed to increase public participation. The slogan Nous y mettons toute notre énergie! [We’re putting all our energy into it!] refers not only to public participation in actual collection but also to the participation of the three RCMs and the private partner through their processing of organic matter into biogas, a green energy source. L’Organibac [Organibin] is the name that will be given to the rolling brown bin for organic matter. The name evokes the word “organic” for the material that goes into it and the word “organize” in reference to the sorting of the material. Damphousse officially launched the information video explaining the stages of the organic matter treatment process from household kitchens to the centre before it becomes a biogas and organic fertilizer. Starting today, all of the general public can watch this new French-language video at the SÉMECS website (www.semecs.ca/) or La Vallée-du-Richelieu, Marguerite-D’Youvillet and Rouville RCM websites. Then Damphousse revealed the architectural rendering of the new building. SÉMECS has retained the architectural firm of Monty Architectes in Chambly. The rendering allows the viewer to visualize the building façade and depth, part of the administrative offices and a digester.

This coming fall, once SÉMECS has obtained the latest authorizations from the Ministère du Développement durable, de l’Environnement et de la Lutte contre les changements climatiques (MDDELCC), construction of the organic matter biomethanation and composting centre will be underway until late 2016. Again, SÉMECS is an enterprise comprised of three southeastern RCMs of Communauté métropolitaine de Montréal (CMM) [Greater Montreal], that is, La Vallée-du-Richelieu, Marguerite-D’Youville and Rouville, and the private company Biogaz EG formed by GreenField Éthanol Québec and Groupe Valorrr. SÉMECS carries out activities and possesses skills related to the implementation and operation of an organic matter treatment and conversion company through the design, construction, funding, operation and maintenance of an organic matter biomethanation and composting centre serving the three founding RCMs that include 27 municipalities with a population of approximately 235,000 residents.

For more information, visit www.semecs.ca.