SAINT JOHN (CNB) - Green infrastructure projects will be undertaken in Saint John as the result of low-interest loans and grants totalling more than $4.2 million under the Green Municipal Fund (GMF).

The announcement was made today by Local Government Minister Bernard LeBlanc; Saint John MP Rodney Weston; Saint John Mayor Ivan Court; and Jean Perrault, president of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM).

"Today's investments will help Saint John proceed with important green infrastructure projects and help us work toward our goal of self-sufficiency," said LeBlanc. "By collaborating with organizations such as the FCM, we are assisting New Brunswick municipalities to become even more environmentally, socially and economically sustainable."

The GMF is an endowment financed by the Government of Canada and managed by the FCM. The GMF supports partnerships by the public and private sector to fund projects that improve air, water, and soil quality; and that provide climate protection.

"The federal government is assisting municipalities across the country in achieving their goal of a cleaner and healthier environment for Canadians through the GMF," said Weston. "Today's announcement is another example of how the Government of Canada, in partnership with the FCM, is helping Saint John build a greener future for its residents."

Following an agreement between the Government of New Brunswick and FCM in December 2008, those New Brunswick municipalities that could only obtain grants under the GMF now have access to low-interest loans through the New Brunswick Municipal Finance Corporation.

"Our community recognizes it is the inherent responsibility of every individual and organization to embrace a shared commitment to environmental stewardship, and to live in balance with our natural resources," said Court. "We are extremely pleased with the announcement today, as access to this funding will allow us to move closer to our community vision of leading the nation as an example of a sustainable community."

The City of Saint John will receive a total of $4,272,882 in GMF funding for the following projects:

  • Canada Games Aquatic Centre energy efficiency retrofit, $1,795,048;
  • Saint John Transit Commission new construction LEED Silver Transit and Operation Centre, $1,569,122;
  • LEED Gold police headquarters, $844,762; and
  • the Saint John Integrated Community Sustainability Plan, $63,950.

"The GMF is an excellent way for all municipalities in New Brunswick to obtain access low-interest loans and grants that will help them invest in their local sustainable infrastructure projects," said Perrault, mayor of Sherbrooke, Que. "We are pleased that, by working closely with the Government of New Brunswick and the province's municipal associations, we now have an agreement in place that guarantees all New Brunswick municipalities enjoy full access to GMF for projects such as the ones we are announcing today."