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A cement plant in L’Orignal...

What’s a cement plant?

A cement plant is an industry that produces fine cement powder by using limestone as the main ingredient. It is not to be confused with a ready-mix plant (a much smaller sized facility) that produces concrete by simply mixing cement powder, sand and water.

In a cement plant, limestone is crushed and ground to a powder form and mixed with other ingredients. This mix is then burned at approximately 1500°C to create clinker. The clinker is ground with other additives to create cement powder that will be shipped by heavy trucks.

Extract from Cement Technology Roadmap 2009 - Carbon emissions reductions up to 2050, by International Energy Agency (IEA) and World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), p.4

Colacem wishes to build a cement plant in L’Orignal

Colacem would like to build a cement plant on land that belongs to this company east of the existing quarry operation that is also owned by this same company. This land is located just north of the route 17 in the hearth of a rural zone just 4.5 km west of the village of L’Orignal.

This 138 acre size lot is in the heart of a rural zone (RU) and has presently a temporary permit for agricultural use. With the exception of the quarry, all surrounding lands have a rural zoning (RU) or agricultural zoning (A) designation. The vast majority of these lands are of agricultural use, some with biological accreditation, livestock farming as well as forest areas and residential areas.

A cement plant is not permitted in a rural zone according to the Zoning By-Laws of the Township of Champlain. A cement plant is a heavy industry and can have a very large impact on the environment. A heavy industrial zoning (MG) land designation is required for this type of industry.

In order for this project to move ahead, the project proponent has asked for a change in zoning regulations in order to change the present agricultural use rural zoning to a heavy industrial use designation. This zoning regulations change will allow the final approval process for the various permits that are required by the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change (MOECC) to go through.

Colacem submits technical and environmental impact studies

In mid-July 2016, Colacem submitted the required studies for a request for zoning regulations changes to the Champlain Township, a modification to the Official Plan of the United Counties of Prescott-Russell (UCPR) and two permits requests to the MOECC, for the construction and operation of a cement plant in L’Orignal. Here are the links to consult the various documents submitted:

Champlain Township-UCPR : http://www.prescott-russell.on.ca/en/planning/official-plan/ongoing-amendment

Colacem website: http://www.ca.colacem.com/newproject/indexorignal.html

Environmental Registry of the MOECC :   012-8124, a proposal for an Environmental Compliance Approval with Limited Operational Flexibility (Air). Comment period closes August 29, 2016. 012-8119, a proposal for a new Environmental Compliance Approval (Sewage.) Comment period closes August 26, 2016.

Project analysis and approval process

The Champlain Township and the United Counties of Prescott-Russell will schedule a joint public consultation meeting to be most likely held during the September 2016 or shortly afterwards. The population will be able to comment on the zoning change and amendment to the Official Plan. Any resident can express their opposition to this project and do so in writing and/or verbally.

The permits requests submitted to the MOECC by Colacem are analyzed and based on the studies submitted by Colacem. The population has until August 26 or 29, 2016 to submit comments on the MOECC website.

Colacem project – Brief

Based on the studies and documents submitted to the authorities, as well as information presented by writing by Colacem, project director Marc Bataille and project consultants during the Colacem open house of May 3rd, 2016 held in L’Orignal by the project proponent. This is what will result for the population :

  • A change in zoning of 138 acres land... from rural to heavy industrial in the surrounding rural environmentagricultural and residential use .
  • 52 very large industrial buildings and structures in our rural environment, including :
    • Materials production buildings with petcoke fueled rotary kilns, crushers and grinders.
    • Raw materials and cement storage and warehousing.
    • Cement silo storage and truck filling stations.
    • Indoor and outdoor materials conveyor machinery.
    • On site elevated plateau for heavy truck materials dumping and handling.
    • Open pit for petcoke fuel storage.
    • Industrial chimney structure with cooling tower.
  • A very tall chimney of 410 feet (125 metres) to disperse over a very large area emissions from cooking limestone, other ingredients and petcoke combustion that the anti-pollution systems cannot contain.
  • Day and night production and materials handling activities with heavy machinery operations and on site heavy truck movement to supply raw materials and the final cement product and this for most of the year.
  • Production capacity will be 3000 Tonnes per day of clinker, mixed with other ingredients to produce approximately 4000 Tonnes of cement per day…over 1 million Tonnes per year of cement.
  • Increased activity in the quarry will be required to help supply raw materials to existing clients, the Kilmar-Grenville-sur-la-Rouge, Harrington Qc, cement plant, and this new cement plant. Quarry activities such as dynamite blasting, crushing, heavy machinery and heavy truck movement will increase.
  • From 80 to 110 heavy trucks per hour on route 17, coming and going from the site:
    • 16 hours per day activities, from 3:00am to 7:00pm
    • Occasionally, 24 hours per day activity for the delivery of raw materials such as petcoke from the port of Montréal.

The surroundings of the subject lands

Colacem’s studies confirm the followings facts:

  • In general, the site (subject lands) is surrounded by agricultural lands and livestock farms, some of which have an organic certification, with, to the north, a significant woodlot and residential dwellings all along the waterfront of the Ottawa River.
  • The L’Orignal Quarry operated by Colacem abuts the western boundary of the site.
  • 6 residential dwellings are within 215 metres from the site, all located to the south and east.
  • A significant number of residential dwellings, but not specified, are located on Bay Road, at 1.5 km or within 2 km to the north, north-west and north-east of the site.
  • The L’Orignal Bay, part of the Ottawa River touches land within 1.5 km from the site.
  • The Village of L’Orignal is located at approximately 5 km to the east of the site
  • There is another heavy industry at less than 4 km east of the site, and directly to the west side of the village.


Assembly of two maps extracted from Planning Justification Report – Official Plan & Zoning By-Law Amendment Applications, March 15, 2016, prepared for Colacem Canada Inc., by MacNaughton Hermsen Britton Clarkson Planning Limited (MHBC), with the addition by Action Champlain of the approximate area of two km around the site.


A cement plant in l’Orignal, it may affect all of us!

Imagine 80 to 110 heavy trucks per hour

Imagine 80 to 110 heavy trucks per hour circulation along Route 17, as much as 16 hours per day, between 03:00am and 07:00 pm.L’Orignal, Vankleek Hill, Hawkesbury and other villages including Alfred, Grenville-sur-la-Rouge will also be affected. The pollution, noise and dust caused by this large amount of heavy traffic will destroy your peace and well-being!

Imagine a 410-foot chimney

Imagine an industrial chimney with a height of 410 feet (125 meters). Higher than the mountains at Pointe-au-Chêne! This towering chimney will be in the close vicinity of inhabited areas and agricultural land of L’Orignal! Illuminated at night, it will be seen as far as the eye can see, affecting the entire region!

Imagine 52 large buildings

Imagine 52 large industrial buildings out-of-scale in relation to our residential and rural landscape.

Imagine dust particles

Imagine dust particles from the cement plant and the quarry that would fall on your roofs, in your waterways and groundwater, all the way into your vegetable gardens and drinking water!



News & meetings

A Big Thank you!

As you probably know, the hearings concluded December 18th, 2020.

During the past year, Action Champlain and our team of lawyers and experts have worked to update and consolidate the defense elements. We cannot give any details, for obvious reasons, but we can say that our preparation is solid and, as you already know, we have very good lawyers and experts in rural planning and other fields of expertise.

It must be said that, if we are in such a good position today, it is thanks to the strong mobilization of our community, to our unwavering desire not to see this cement project ruin our quality of life and our health, our environment and the future of our children. This extraordinary citizen mobilization involves more than a thousand signatures, thousands of hours devoted by each and every one to find out about the facts, to discuss the issues together and to express our opinions. Just think of the milestone launch of the No Cement Plant in L’Orignal by Action Champlain campaign, with 500 people at the L’Orignal church.

Support for our cause has also come from neighboring communities, on both sides of this jewel that we share, the Ottawa River: citizens, but also environmental defenders and many elected officials at the federal, provincial and municipal levels. There is also the invaluable contribution in services by local resources, citizens and businesses. Finally, it is the financial contribution of this large community, to the tune of $ 400,000, which allows us to cover the legal and expert fees for the defense of our cause.

Clearly, there is no social acceptability with regard to this L’Orignal cement plant project of which, should be remembered, goes against a number of policies, laws, guidelines, regulations, official plans, etc.

But the UCPR decided to ignore not only the massive rejection of the project expressed by the population within the framework of the public consultation, but also the decision of the Township of Champlain to refuse the project on its territory because it is incompatible with the existing zoning and contrary to its zoning by-law.

The announcement of this project and then this arbitrary decision caused a still tangible shock in the community, of course, but we remained strong and more than ever determined to uphold the Township of Champlain's decision to reject the project.

We can be proud of all that we have accomplished collectively and individually to protect the character and assets of this beautiful region where we have chosen to live.

A big thank you to all for your commitment and solidarity.

Action Champlain

LPAT audiences ended Dec 18th,2020

Updated December 18th, 2020

The hearings in front of the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal (LPAT, formerly known as OMB) took place November 9th to November 25th, with the exception of November 11th, then December 10,11,16,18th.

Dec 18th hearing will be available on YouTube probably till Dec 19th or later.

           Select YouTube

This will give you the option to 2 new links - one to follow in English, one to follow in French. Suggest to look at French muted (it has full screen), and listen to English.


Chairperson Robinson can now take 3 months or more to render his decision, well informed. 

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