Colin Mayes, Member of Parliament for Okanagan-Shuswap, today announced that the Zellstoff Celgar Pulp Mill in Castlegar, B.C., is the first mill to receive funding under the Pulp and Paper Green Transformation Program (PPGTP) for its Green Energy Project.
"This project shows that smart investments enable pulp mills to increase their capacity to produce renewable energy from forest biomass while providing important forest products for consumers," said Mr. Mayes. "The Pulp and Paper Green Transformation Program is laying the groundwork for a greener, more sustainable future for our pulp and paper sector and will help the Celgar Pulp Mill maintain jobs in the community."
Thirty-eight pulp and paper mills across Canada, representing 24 companies, have generated credits under the $1-billion program, based on their 2009 production levels of black liquor - a liquid by-product of the pulping process used to generate heat and power. Qualified companies are required to submit specific project proposals for their facilities and have until 2012 to apply the credits to environmental improvement projects.
The Celgar Green Energy Project has three components designed to improve the environmental performance of Celgar Pulp Mill's existing infrastructure. This investment will allow the mill to take advantage of waste heat, increase the production of steam from wood waste and increase capacity to generate bioenergy. Significant environmental benefits are expected to result from the project, including a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, increased energy efficiency and reduced community odour and noise.
The Green Energy Project is expected to create 145 full-time jobs in the region over the next seven-month construction period. As well, it will allow the mill to generate enough renewable electricity to meet its own needs and supply some energy to the B.C. grid by late 2010. The PPGTP investment will enable the mill to complete this project and take advantage of future market opportunities.
This investment complements initiatives that are being delivered under Canada's Economic Action Plan to sustain and improve the forest industry in Canada. The Government of Canada has committed $170 million to assist the forest industry in developing innovative wood products and expand global markets for our wood products. Forty million dollars has been invested to develop pilot-scale demonstrations developed under the Transformative Technologies Program. Further, the $1-billion Community Adjustment Fund is creating jobs and maintaining employment in communities affected by the global economic downturn, specifically forest-dependent communities.