PRESS RELEASE | SAINT-HYACINTHE, DECEMBER 11, 2018
ALUS Montérégie thanked 21 participating farmers for their commitment to improving the environment.
At ALUS Montérégie’s annual cheque presentation in Saint-Hyacinthe today, 21 participants received their annual payment cheques in recognition of their efforts to improve the environment. In total, participants will receive $8,962 per year for the next five years, for a total of $44,810.
“I am delighted to see so many local farmers determined to implement new, green practices. I am very proud of ALUS Montérégie and its innovative yet sound management of both the environment and agriculture,” said Christian St-Jacques, President of the Montérégie Federation of the Union des producteurs agricoles (UPA) and ALUS Montérégie PAC Chair.
In 2018, 21 farmers implemented new ALUS projects on 12.4 hectares of their land to significantly improve the environment and the quality of life in their communities. The concrete benefits included cleaner air, cleaner water and more biodiversity, including a more harmonious coexistence between agriculture and wildlife.
New ALUS projects were established between May and November 2018 on farms located in Brome-Missisquoi, Haut-Richelieu, Haut-Saint-Laurent, Haute-Yamaska, Maskoutains, Pierre-de-Saurel, Rouville and Vallée-de du-Richelieu. They included:
- Establishing riparian buffer zones for pollinators;
- Planting shelterbelts (trees and shrubs);
- Reforestation of fallow areas;
- Establishment of a wildflower meadow;
- Creation of two ponds with trees and shrubs around them.
Launched in August 2016, the ALUS Montérégie program was created jointly by the UPA Montérégie Federation and ALUS Canada. It provides annual payments for management and maintenance of projects that produce ecosystem services for the community. Participating farmers commit to maintaining their projects for at least 5 years. In total, 40 farmers now participate in the ALUS Montérégie program.
“Some ALUS Montérégie highlights from the past year include conducting a planting activity with high-school students on an organic farm, presenting the ALUS program in France and in Chaudière-Appalaches, and becoming a finalist for the Environmental prize at the UPA’s Grande fête agricole et forestière,” said Mr. St-Jacques.
The success of the ALUS program is due to its strong partnerships.
The ALUS Montérégie program was launched in partnership with ALUS Canada, A Weston Family Initiative. This charitable organization has already invested nearly $6.5M to establish 21 ALUS communities across the country, with nearly 7,500 hectares now enrolled in the program.
“We are proud of our presence in Quebec. We have developed a strong partnership with the Montérégie UPA Federation: we have invested more than $ 235,000 over the past three years to establish the ALUS Montérégie program, and we will continue to deepen the partnership over the next few years, “said Bryan Gilvesy, Executive Director of ALUS Canada,.
“We want to thank the first 40 farmers to participate in the ALUS Montérégie . They have already dedicated more than 33 hectares for ALUS projects in this region of Quebec. Our goal is to help farmers produce ecosystem services that benefit our communities.
ALUS Montérégie has also found strong local funders, such as Soleno, a leader in sustainable solutions for stormwater control, which is providing $30,000 a year for five years, until 2022.
“We are very proud to be the first major local supporter of the only ALUS program in Quebec,” said Alain Poirier, President of Soleno. “The compensation offered by ALUS recognizes the contribution of farmers who reduce their environmental footprint by voluntarily making improvements to their farmland. It’s a concrete gesture to protect the environment.”
ALUS Montérégie also enjoys support by Brigitte Sansoucy (federal MP for Saint-Hyacinthe-Acton), Peter Schiefke (federal MP for Vaudreuil-Soulanges), Jean-François Roberge (Quebec’s Minister of Education and Higher Education and MPP for Chambly), Claire Samson (MPP for Iberville), the City of Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, the MRC of Haut-Richelieu and the Municipality of Saint-Alexandre.
Farmers in the Montérégie interested in improving the environment through developments on their lands can submit their application by completing the online form at : www.upamonteregie.ca/ALUS.
For more information : https://alus.ca/alus_community/alus-in-monteregie/
Photo gallery: https://flic.kr/s/aHsmwZHNdb