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blue planet and green ideas | Harrow on generators

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Maria Gill
Maria Gill
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The soft chatter of generators is a common noise on construction sites. A manufacturer in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu wants to change this model thanks to the electric batteries.

Posted at 6:00 AM

Mathieu Perrault

Mathieu Perrault

“On the construction site, especially at the start of work, there is no connection to the power grid,” explains Miro Yaghi, Termaco Chairman and CEO. This company put several electric batteries on construction sites in Montreal this year. “Having a battery to replace generators greatly reduces noise and greenhouse gas emissions. Our battery is mobile, on wheels, so we can recharge it and also bring it to the construction site location where we need it most. We even have a construction site where it is recharged by solar panels.” »

Photo courtesy of Miro Yaghi

Miro Yaghi, Chairman and CEO of Termaco


The TREE (Termaco Electric Reserve) battery, which comes in versions from 100 to 1500 kWh, was launched at the end of last year. It’s ecological and…economical.

We calculated that with diesel supplied to generators, it would be profitable to buy a battery in a couple of years.

Marco Lessard, President of Preco-MSE Construction

TREE has hired this summer on construction sites in Vaudreuil and in the Saint-Laurent neighborhood. Another advantage: This battery makes it possible to use “site trailers in the evening and pumps at night, which is often impossible due to municipal regulations limiting generator noise,” he argues.

Preco-MSE specializes in excavation, which means they are often among the first on the job site. “It can take several months to get in touch with Hydro-Québec,” says Mr. Lessard. Preco-MSE had already tested a worksite without generators at the Raglan mine in Nunavík, where wind turbines provide thousands of liters of diesel annually.

Photo courtesy of Miro Yaghi

TREE battery with its solar panels at Pomerleau

Pomerleau also has a TREE battery on construction sites in the Montreal area, with solar panels for recharging. But the company prefers to wait for more results before conducting interviews on this topic.

Founded since the 1960s, Termaco initially specialized in metal processing and developed batteries for forklifts and data centers, before being sold in 2015 to a group of Quebec investors.

TREE will also be used near Canadian tennis courts at Gary Park, starting at the end of September. “TV networks need a very stable power source to play matches,” Yaghi says. So generators are needed. The battery will replace the current regulation function of the generators. It will also help them reduce their peak consumption for the rest of the year. »

electric cars

Another outlet for Termaco batteries is to charge electric vehicles in buildings with a lot of residence.

In California, it will eventually be necessary for apartment buildings to have this type of battery, which can be recharged by solar panels. And this, above all, ensures enough energy for everyone to recharge their car at the same time in the evening.

Miro Yaghi, Chairman and CEO of Termaco

“We are already seeing, in certain neighborhoods in Quebec, there are limits to the capacity of the electric grid, if too many people connect their car to a fast charging station at the same time,” says Mr. Yaghi.

During recent heat waves in California, the state has also asked citizens not to recharge their cars when they return home at the end of the day, when demand for air conditioning is at its peak.

See also  supply chain | The severity of the problems surprised the Bank of Canada

Norway, the country most advanced in fleet electrification, is also adopting batteries to overcome the limitations of the electric grid. “It’s the only solution for older buildings with limited electrical input,” says Sture Portvik, director of electric mobility in Oslo.

Will we see batteries replace the generators used during failures that are frequent in Laurentians? “I don’t think we’ll be there for about 20 years,” says Mr. Yaghi. The cost of the batteries should be reduced by a factor of 10″.

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  • 11%
    Percentage of global greenhouse gas emissions related to building and infrastructure construction


    Percentage of global greenhouse gas emissions related to the operation of buildings and infrastructure (heating, etc.)


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