On 21 June, an impressive land clean-up took place on the quad trail near Grande-Baie Works. A dozen volunteers braved the heat and the mosquitoes and spent half a day picking up waste that citizens had inadvertently left behind over the years.
The Club Quad runs on the trail along Highway 381, right on the edge of Rio Tinto’s land. “We ride on land owned by Rio Tinto, and they give us access to it,” said Daniel Desbiens, Club Quad du Fjord board member. “It’s a great partnership that allows us to ride on trails that connect all over the region. Without Rio Tinto, we wouldn’t have such beautiful trails, so it’s only natural for us to help maintain them.”
While patrolling the trail, Desbiens noticed garbage in the area. It seemed like uninformed residents had left waste there, which should have been disposed of at the ecocentre.
“I noticed tyre tracks from a pick-up truck leading into our trails. I went to have a look and saw that there was garbage. Normally, as trail users, if we find trash in our path, we pick it up and throw it in the bin. But this time, there was too much waste, and we needed help and equipment,” said Desbiens.
Given the scale of the task at hand, he contacted Rio Tinto’s Real Estate Affairs department. His request was handled quickly, and the necessary human and material resources were deployed.
“It’s always relevant when key partners like Club Quad ask for our help with initiatives like this. Getting involved with the community is even more meaningful when we pitch in to help as well. It’s also good for the environment,” said Aline Cottin, Senior Advisor, Communities and Social Performance, La Baie and Laterrière, who was delighted to take part in the clean-up.
“It’s great to have partners like Club Quad voicing their concerns, because we can’t have eyes everywhere. If Daniel hadn’t intervened, the waste would have continued to clutter the trail without us knowing about it,” said Jean-François Gagné, Maintenance Supervisor, Grande-Baie Works.
In the days that followed, Gagné enlisted the help of another partner, the Fernand Gilbert Group, which provided a loading truck driven by Frédéric Côté. Club Quad du Fjord volunteers and Rio Tinto employees and retirees also lent a hand.
Claude Tremblay, Jérémy Boudreault, Luc Dechamplain and Gaétan Dufour also helped with the clean-up.
Rio Tinto and Club Quad du Fjord were pleased to highlight the quality of their partnership.
“I was able to get to know the people who work for the company and see Rio Tinto in a different light,” said Desbiens.
“It’s a win-win situation,” concluded Gagné.