07/21/2015 10:48 EDT | Updated 07/21/2016 05:59 EDT

Agreement signed to reduce diesel fuel use in remote Canadian communities

HALIFAX - Four Canadian provinces and two territories have established a task force to reduce the use of diesel fuel to generate electricity in remote communities.

Manitoba, Quebec, Newfoundland and Labrador, Ontario, Northwest Territories and Yukon announced the agreement today as government representatives gathered in Halifax for the Energy and Mines Ministers' Conference.

A news release from the Newfoundland and Labrador government says the task force will be chaired by Manitoba and will consist of government representatives and agencies that are responsible for electricity supply in remote off-grid communities.

It says the task force will prepare a report that examines efforts that have been or are currently underway to reduce diesel use in remote communities, among other things.

The report will also make recommendations on next steps.

There are nearly 300 off-grid communities in Canada, with a total population of about 200,000 people.