The ACCORD Wind Energy Cluster comprises over 30 industry leaders, economic decision-makers and institutional partners of the Gaspésie – Îles-de-la-Madeleine administrative region and MRC de la Matanie who consult amongst each other to define the priorities and actions for developing an innovative and competitive wind industry in North America.
The ACCORD Project
The ACCORD Project (Action concertée de coopérationrégionale de développement)is a priority initiative by the government in an effort to develop the economies of rural Quebec. Implementation of the Project is overseen by theministèredes Financeset de l’Économiedu Québec (MFEQ).
ACCORD aims to position the regions of Quebec as globally recognized centres of specific industrial competencies and builds on regional strengths, as well as the mobilization and the vitality of the regional business community.
Cluster of Excellence
A cluster of excellence is defined as a group of organizations which:
- both collaborate and compete with one another on related and interrelated activities;
- are located within a definedterritory;
- form a sector in which the region has succeeded in distinguishing itself thanks to its specific competencies and products;
- employs qualified researchers and labour force.
Michael Porter, professor at Harvard Business School, defines a cluster as“a geographic concentration of interconnected companies, specialized suppliers and service providers, firms in related industries, and associated institutions in particular fields that compete but also cooperate.”
Scope of the Wind Energy Cluster
The Wind Energy Cluster is based on developing an energy source which is both renewable and environmentally friendly. It encompasses the entire supply chain, namely:
- Wind turbine component manufacturing
- Component assembly
- Small- and utility-scale wind turbine manufacturing
- Integration of R&D and technology transfer
- Wind farm installation
- Energy production
- Transport of wind turbine components
- Industry-related services (environmental impact assessments, wind measurement campaigns, operation and maintenance, telecom, etc.)
- Training of a labour force adapted to the needs of the sector
The Wind Energy Cluster consists of businesses and institutions located in the region of Gaspésie-Îles-de-la-Madeleine and businesses operating in the MRC de la Matanie (including wind farm developers).
Italso revolves around alliances and partnerships from outside the region that support and complement the Cluster.
The Wind Energy Cluster comprises some 30 businesses that together represent roughly 1000 direct jobs in the administrative region of Gaspésie – Îles-de-la-Madeleine and MRC de la Matanie.
History of the ACCORD Wind Energy Cluster
Wind energy was selected as one of the clusters of excellence for the administrative region of Gaspésie – Îles-de-la-Madeleine and MRC de la Matanie(the “Designated Region”). In this regard, in June 2007, the Quebec government and regional stakeholders signed an implementation agreement for the development of this sector.
At the end of the first action plan, the Wind Energy Cluster was assessed and renewed by the Quebec government for a new five-year plan which will terminate in March 2016.
Presidency of the Wind Energy Cluster
Gaspémayor François Roussywas the first president of the ACCORD Wind Energy Cluster from 2007 to 2011. Since January 2012, this position has been held by Christian Babin, retired Cégep de la Gaspésieteacher, wind energy consultant,and founder of a company manufacturing brake pads for wind turbines.
Management of the Wind Energy Cluster
The Wind Energy Cluster was first directed by Marie-Claude Bourque (2007 to 2012), with Monica Normand taking over for a one-year period between 2010 and 2011. Dave Lavoie has held the position of director of the Wind Energy Cluster since May 2012.
For a history of wind energy in Quebec, click here