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FAQ – La Coop fédérée grain export terminal project

FAQ

1. What are the reasons for developing a grain export terminal?

The aim of the grain transshipment project is to provide Québec and national agricultural producers with access to the international grain export market (specifically, Europe). 

 

2. What will the economic impact of this project be on the sector? 

La Coop fédérée is proud to participate in the economic development of Québec, Québec City and Canada by contributing to domestic grain exports.

For Québec, the value added for investment and operating activities is estimated to be nearly $18 million a year. ($20 million / year for all of Canada and $13 million / year for the Québec City region alone).

 

3. How many jobs will be created by the construction of this terminal?

The work associated with the construction of the site will generate 134 direct and indirect jobs in Canada, including 112 in Québec.

Once the site is operational, project activities will result in the creation or maintenance of 90 direct and indirect jobs in Canada, including 75 in Québec. 

 

4. What indicates that the grain export terminal project will be successful?

La Coop fédérée is already very well established in the grain industry. It already markets over two million tonnes of grain a year and exports to Europe, Mexico, Japan, and Cuba.

Grain production in Québec and Canada is significant enough to export internationally.

The project’s new storage facilities will further develop these activities to reach 1.2 million metric tonnes of grain marketed from the new terminal by 2021. 

 

5. At present, who owns the existing silos? Will La Coop fédérée acquire these silos?

They belong to Arrimage Québec. La Coop fédérée is planning to acquire them, as well as related facilities for loading ships. 

 

6. Which companies are responsible for the development and operations of this terminal? 

La Coop fédérée will be the sole operator of the project facilities. Other partners associated with the development of the project, including the government, will be confirmed shortly.

Other trading partners could possibly use future loading facilities only for natural materials.

 

7. What will the government’s contribution to the project be? 

Discussions are ongoing with the Québec government for possible participation in the project. We have no other details to provide for now.

 

8. Why should public funds be invested in this project?

This project will contribute to the economic development of Québec, Québec City and Canada by contributing to domestic grain exports. It will create jobs.

La Coop fédérée is concerned with noise pollution, road traffic, air quality, and visual impact and has planned to implement a series of mitigation measures upstream of the project to comply with all environmental standards.

The project concerns the storage and handling of natural materials only.

 

9. Is this project related to the signing of the Canada-Europe Agreement?

No. Europe, as well as South America and Asia, are potential markets for the export of grain from the Port of Québec.

10. Is the project respectful of the environment?

La Coop fédérée follows the Environmental Citizen Participation Process (ECPP) in force at the Québec Port Authority (QPA) and has already conducted studies to assess the potential effects of the project and to provide for mitigation measures.

Prevention and mitigation measures have been identified, either in the design of the project itself or in its mode of operation, in order to avoid or significantly reduce the potential effects and to comply with all regulations in force.

The study and mitigation measures are available on the website of the Québec Port Authority (QPA).

La Coop fédérée has been working in the agri-food industry for nearly 100 years and knows the issues and imperatives.

 

11. In what ways is the Environmental Citizen Participation Process (ECPP) different from a hearing before the BAPE or an environmental assessment? 

The marine terminal will be developed on federal territory. The applicable jurisdiction is therefore the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act (CEAA). 

To ensure informed decision-making, the QPA has put in place an environmental process for citizen participation. This process is intended to meet the expectations of the public and also those of the federal authorities.

The ECPP provides for information and consultation activities, including the opportunity to file a project brief.

1. Will the project affect air quality?

Considering the “worst case” scenario, and taking into account initial concentrations, ambient air quality standards are met in all respects.

The results of simulations in residential sectors show concentrations well below the standards and significantly lower than at the edge of the industrial zone.

The potential environmental effects in terms of air quality are considered to be of low intensity, geographically limited (local area only) and short-term.  

 

2.     How will La Coop fédérée ensure that its operations will not affect air quality?

The atmospheric emission standard is set at 30 milligrams / m³ for the concentration of particles at the outlets of dust extractors in this type of installation.

The project’s dust extractors will be designed so that concentrations of particles at the outlet are:

·       For new installations: less than 1 milligram / m³

·       For existing installations: less than 1 or 9 milligrams / m³

Additional mitigation measures will be put in place to minimize air emissions:   

·       Use of clean equipment and vehicles in good working order 

·       Inspections and preventive maintenance of equipment and vehicles

·       Idling reduction of truck machinery

·       Establishment of a system for managing and processing reports (complaints, specific events, etc.) 

 

3.     Do grain handling, loading, unloading, and storage operations generate dust? What measures does La Coop fédérée intend to take to ensure air quality?

La Coop fédérée has planned several measures to limit the possible spread of dust in the air. Seven dust extractors will be installed to suck dust directly from places that emit it. Also, fully paved traffic areas will be built to limit dust. 

1.     Will construction be very noisy?

During construction, the impact on the soundscape is considered to be low, but work will still be limited to normal working hours (7 am to 5 pm) on weekdays only.

It should also be noted that noise measurements have indicated that the main source of noise is traffic on Champlain Boulevard.

 

2.    Is the process of unloading and loading grain noisy?

According to the environmental effects study, the noise impact of the grain unloading and loading process is considered to be low.

It should also be noted that noise measurements have indicated that the main source of noise is traffic on Champlain Boulevard.

 

3.     How does La Coop fédérée plan to reduce the noise impact of its facilities?

Several mitigation measures will be integrated directly into the project from the start, including: 

·      Limitation of construction work to normal working hours (7 am to 5 pm)

·     Installation of silencers on certain fixed equipment (e.g., silo fans)

·     Complete or partial closure of both towers to keep equipment noise inside

·     Installation of the wagon unloading station and waiting area for trucks south of the site away from neighbouring dwellings

Additional mitigation measures will be put in place to minimize noise-generating operations: 

·       Between 10 pm and 6 am

o   Planning of operations to avoid the arrival of trains

o   Limitation of the presence of trucks on the site concurrent with wagons or boats

·       Establishment of a formal operational procedure, in consultation with the railway operator, to minimize noise during wagon coupling and uncoupling manoeuvres 

·       Positioning of the first section of train along Champlain Boulevard to create a noise screen when moving wagons

·       Idling reduction of truck machinery

·       Light-based rather than sound-based back-up warning systems on vehicles 

 

4.     Will there be more trains running on the railways in the area because of your activities? If so, how does La Coop fédérée intend to reduce the noise impact of train unloading?

Yes. At full capacity, La Coop fédérée expects to receive on average less than one train per week.

According to the environmental effects study, the noise impact of the grain unloading and loading process is considered to be low.

In addition, several measures will be implemented to reduce the noise impact of unloading trains:

·       Wagon unloading operations to be conducted south of the silos at a distance from neighbouring dwellings

·       Operations to be conducted between 6 am and 10 pm at the latest

·       Positioning of the first section of train along Champlain Boulevard to create a noise screen when moving wagons

·       Establishment of a formal operational procedure, in consultation with the railway operator, to minimize noise during wagon coupling and uncoupling manoeuvres

 

5.     How does La Coop fédérée plan to reduce the noise impact of trucks?

·      A truck waiting area to be set up south of the silos to limit potential noise

·      In addition, signage to the attention of truckers to confirm the stopping of engines during waiting periods and the prohibition of engine brake use

·      Light-based rather than sound-based back-up warning systems on vehicles

 

6.     Will the dust extractors installed to suck out dust produced by operations be noisy?

Dust extractors will be equipped with silencers to reduce the noise from clean air exiting. The noise produced by dust extractors is below the limits set by the regulations in force.

 

7.     Will the proposed noise mitigation measures have a real impact?

Yes, the planned noise mitigation measures will have a real impact. The project will comply with the noise bylaw of the City of Québec.

Overall, according to the environmental effects study, the impact of the terminal’s construction and operations is considered to be low, short-term and limited.

It should also be noted that noise measurements have indicated that the main source of noise is traffic on Champlain Boulevard.

 

8.     Will there be noise during the weekend?

Construction is scheduled on weekdays and will not cause noise on the weekend.

Once in operation, for the majority of the time, there will be no reception of trains, boats or trucks on site. However, loading or unloading operations may occasionally be conducted on weekends, but these operations will not be any different than those conducted during the week. 

 

9.     The time slot from 6 am to 10 pm should be reduced so as to avoid affecting the area’s residents. How does La Coop fédérée intend to limit operations to more reasonable hours?

Transport operations related to the loading / unloading of grain require some flexibility. This time slot complies with municipal regulations. In order to minimize noise-generating operations, several additional mitigation measures will be implemented: 

·      Limitation of the presence of trucks on the site concurrent with wagons or boats

·     Establishment of a formal operational procedure, in consultation with the railway operator, to minimize noise during wagon coupling and uncoupling manoeuvres 

·     Positioning of the first section of train along Champlain Boulevard to create a noise screen when moving wagons

 

1.     Will export grain terminal activities lead to an increase in road traffic in the area?

Will there be more trucks traveling on Champlain Boulevard?

Truck transportation accounts for 12% of the site’s supply; shipping is preferred to limit the impact of trucking in the area.

The proposed terminal is designed to prevent line-ups on Champlain Boulevard. The current development of the intersection between Champlain Boulevard and Anse au Foulon will allow trucks to enter the site directly, where a waiting area will be set up to permit unloading operations.

·       Incoming and outgoing trucks during five months of the year, in May, June, October, November, and December

·       Trucks permitted to enter the site from 6am to 10pm

·       Capacity of the site limited to 100 trucks per day, with a maximum of 20 trucks per hour

 

2.     Will railway crossings be busier due to trains serving the terminal?

Each train will be uncoupled immediately after arrival to prevent level crossings being obstructed.

1.    Will the operations that take place at the terminal be safe?

To ensure the safety of persons and the protection of the environment, the design, construction and operation of the facilities will be conducted in compliance with applicable regulations and codes.

 

2.     Does increased rail transport put resident safety at risk?

The transport of grain presents no particular risk as in the case of hydrocarbons. The terminal is also served by well-established rail transportation companies: Canadian National (CN), Canadian Pacific (CP) and the Québec-Gatineau Railway (QGRY).

 

3.     How will La Coop fédérée ensure the safety of residents and tourists who wish to continue their nautical activities in the Port?

By applying the same rules and procedures that are currently in force at CDS. Remember that our employees rescued boaters who capsized in the river last December.

1.     Where exactly is the terminal?

The project area is located near 863 Champlain Blvd., Québec, between the warehousing domes occupied by Arrimage Québec and the Sillery Distribution Centre (La Coop fédérée), at the corner of platforms 106 and 107.

 

2.     Why in Québec? Could the project be implemented at another port?

The chosen site has many advantages and features to limit impacts.

·       Proximity to La Coop fédérée's current facilities, optimizing operations

·       Re-use of pellet terminal domes rather than construction of new infrastructure

·       Deep water docks to avoid dredging the St. Lawrence

·       Sector dedicated to the handling of natural bulk products

 

3.     Why not choose another location?

The chosen site has many advantages and features to limit impacts.

·       Proximity to La Coop fédérée's current facilities, optimizing operations

·      Re-use of pellet terminal domes rather than construction of new infrastructure

·      Deep water docks to avoid dredging the St. Lawrence

·      Sector dedicated to the handling of natural bulk products 

 

4.     Will the final project align with the Champlain walkway?

Yes. Measures including landscaping will be put in place, either in collaboration with the Québec Port Authority for the Anse au Foulon harbour walkway project still under consideration, or by carrying out an autonomous integration project.

 

If the Anse au Foulon harbour walkway does not go forward, what does La Coop fédérée plan to do?

La Coop fédérée still intends to make arrangements for the grain export terminal project to be harmonized with the existing facilities and general environment of Anse au Foulon.

 

5.     Will the project have a negative effect on the landscape?

An assessment of the visual impact of the terminal project was made from three points of view. The findings indicate that the visual impact is low to medium.

 

6.     Will the view of the river be preserved from the bike path along the Anse au Foulon?

Yes. Measures including landscaping will be put in place, either in collaboration with the Québec Port Authority for the Anse au Foulon harbour walkway project still under consideration, or by carrying out an autonomous integration project.

 

7.     Will the view of the river be preserved from the Terrasse Grey on the Plains of Abraham?

Yes. A visual simulation performed from the Terrasse Grey shows that the project will continue to be masked by the presence of trees and vegetation cover. This also applies to the residential sector located west of the Plains of Abraham (Jardins Mérici). 

 

8.    Will the view from Lévis be affected?

No. From the south shore, the integration of the project into an industrial frame that includes various storage structures and distances of more than 2.5 km has a minor effect on the landscape.

 

9.     Will the buildings be very tall?

No. No new structures will exceed the height of the tower that is already in place between the two white domes. 

 

10.  How is La Coop fédérée planning to maintain the silos?

The silos will be made of galvanized steel to maintain a new appearance as long as possible. 

La Coop fédérée also intends to coordinate its efforts with the Samuel-De Champlain Parkway and the QPA’s Anse au Foulon harbour walkway project with respect to landscaping. 

 

11.  Will site lighting affect residents living near the site?

Outdoor lighting will be based on a motion detection system to prevent light pollution. In addition, outdoor lighting will be oriented so as not to impede traffic on Champlain Boulevard, the bike path and nearby riverside homes.

 

12.  Does La Coop fédérée intend to put landscaping measures in place?

Yes. Measures including landscaping will be put in place, either in collaboration with the Québec Port Authority for the Anse au Foulon harbour walkway project still under consideration, or by carrying out an autonomous integration project.

 

13.  Has La Coop fédérée worked with the city, town planners or architects to integrate the planned buildings into the landscape?

La Coop fédérée intends to carry out a development project that is in harmony with the Anse au Foulon harbour walkway project still under consideration by the QPA, whose objective it is to enhance the history and port activity of the area for the benefit of citizens and visitors to the city.

1.     Will the public vote on this project? Will the opinion of citizens have a real impact on the project?

La Coop fédérée engages in an open, transparent and respectful citizen consultation process aimed at listening to stakeholders, taking into account concerns expressed to improve the project, and reporting its decisions to participants in consultation meetings. Responses to social concerns will be integrated into the EEE and the project plan. Finally, the project provides for the establishment of a citizen monitoring mechanism as early as the construction phase.

2.     How will La Coop fédérée communicate with the public? 

Environmental impact assessments for Level 2 projects are subject to a 30-day public comment period. 

·       The public will be able to express their concerns and comments either in writing via the internet, through the submission of a brief, in the comments section of the site, or verbally during the public consultation meeting.

·     In addition, La Coop fédérée will organize two open houses during this period at which the public will be able to get information, ask questions and give their comments.

·       A website (TerminalGrains.Ag) will also be put online to gather information about the project and allow citizens to subscribe to the mailing list of the project update newsletter.

 

3.     When will the public be able to participate in consultations?

A preliminary schedule between winter 2018 and summer 2019 has been established for the consultations. The open houses will be held on April 20 and 21.

The consultation on the development project will take place at a later date and will be communicated via the website, the newsletter and the community relations committee.

 

4.     When the work is completed, and terminal operations are underway, will citizens be able to communicate with La Coop fédérée?

Yes, citizens can contact La Coop fédérée via the comments section of the website or by telephone and voicemail.

1.     How is La Coop fédérée positioned among agri-food companies in Québec?

Founded in 1922, La Coop fédérée is the largest agri-food company in Québec and the 24th largest agri-food cooperative in the world. La Coop fédérée represents more than 120,000 members, producers and consumers in nearly 70 co-operatives in several Canadian provinces. La Coop fédérée and its network employs 18,000 people and has a turnover of $9.3 billion.

 

2.     What is the role of La Coop fédérée?

As a wholesaler, La Coop fédérée provides agricultural producers with the goods and services they need to run their businesses. Its activities are divided into three divisions: agricultural (animal and vegetable production and grain marketing, under the banners Elite and La Coop), Groupe BMR Inc. (under the banners BMR, Unimat, Agrizone, and Potvin & Bouchard), and Olymel S.E.C (under the banners Olymel, Flamingo and Lafleur).

 

3.    What is La Coop fédérée's contribution to grain marketing in Québec?

The Coop is unquestionably the main player and a key player in grain marketing in Québec. It trades more than 2.2 million metric tonnes of grain per year. This represents 30% of the volume produced in Québec.