Oct. 8, 2012
A new project announced for the Bécancour region could eclipse the anger caused by the closure of Quebec's sole nuclear plant.
The Quebec government will announce its support of a $1.2 billion fertilizer production facility for the Bécancour region. The region was recently torn by the government's decision to close the Gentilly-2 power plant.
Two large agricultural coops are included in the $1.2 billion investment. The Coop fédérée and IFFCO, an agricultural giant based out of Mumbai, will be partners in the project.
IFFCO is set to invest between $100 million to $200 million in the project.
The province is expected to take part in funding the project.
The Coop fédérée represents 90,000 members of 103 cooperatives in Quebec, New Brunswick, Ontario, Alberta, Manitoba and Saskatchewan.
IFFCO is already part of five similar projects across the world.
The new factory will produce urea, a necessary composite for fertilizer.
Reports state that the IFFCO wanted to join their partner, the Coop fédérée, and acquire half of the factory's annual production capacity – 600,000 tons of urea per year. The remainder of the production will be destined for Canadian and American markets.
Urea requires a large quantity of natural gas to be produced and Bécancour is located near a pipeline.
More than 500 workers will be hired to help build the factory and, once completed, the new facility will employ 200 people.
Natural Resources Minister Martine Ouellet announced the closure of Gentilly-2 last week based on further recommendations from Hydro-Québec.
A report issued by Hydro-Québec said the plant was too expensive to maintain.