Quebec announces smart energy and smart city goals


The premier of Canada’s Quebec province, François Legault, will present a sweeping plan to electrify public transport, air-conditioning and heating by the end of 2019, and start of 2020.

The plan will call for the electrification of bus lines and other means of public transport and will include the expansion of existing or planned subway and over-ground light rail systems in the cities of Montreal and Quebec City.

Legault has said he wants to buy as many new rail cars and buses as possible from within the province. He said he hopes it is possible to exceed a limit stipulated in international trade agreements so that more vehicles can be purchased from Bombardier Inc and Alstom SA, both companies have facilities in Quebec.

Legault met last week with New York City officials to discuss exporting surplus power from Hydro-Québec, the government-owned utility.

Legault sees Quebec as North America’s “green battery” and said if there is a takeup of Hydro-Québec’s present surplus, the publicly owned utility could build new dams and wind energy in co-operation with indigenous communities.

Quebec now relies on hydro power for 36% of its energy consumption, with oil accounting for 40% of energy consumed in the province.

“We pump money from our pockets and send it to the pockets of the oil companies,” Legault said at a convention of his Coalition Avenir Québec party.