Construction is already underway at Northwood Pulp Mill on the single largest project funded by the federal Pulp and Paper Green Transformation Program.
The $100.2 million upgrade to the mill’s recovery boiler system is slated to be complete this fall. The project should reduce fine particulate emissions from the boiler by 50 per cent and total reduced sulphur the chemical which gives Prince George its smell of money’ by 66 per cent. The Northwood recovery boiler system is the largest source of total reduced sulphur in Canfor’s Prince George operations.
“This project itself will pay dividends in multiple ways,” Canfor Pulp Products vice president Brett Robinson said. “It will see reinvestment in one of our oldest assets.”
The upgrade which includes the construction of a new concentrator and installation of an economizer system will increase steam recovery and reduce natural gas consumption by the mill.
Much of the recovery boiler infrastructure dates back to the 1960s.
Robinson said the Green Transformation Program has been a turning point for sustainability of the pulp and paper industry.
“This will establish a long-term viability for our industry and region.”
Northwood general manager Robert Dufresne said the mill will continue to operate as normal until mid-August.
“Everything will be business as usual, except for 35 days,” Dufresne said. “From mid-August to late September… half the mill will be down. Then we’ll be up and running in early October.”
Canfor Pulp environment manager Glenda Waddell said although the Northwood recovery boiler is the largest source of total reduced sulphur among Canfor’s operations, it doesn’t have the largest air quality impact on the city.
“This is the largest source, but because of the distance and it having a taller, higher-velocity stack, it doesn’t have the biggest impact,” Waddell said.
It’s actually Prince George Pulp Mill which has the most noticeable impact on the city’s air, she said. An odour-capturing system and electrostatic precipitator are being installed at the mill to reduce total reduced sulphur and fine particulate emissions.
They should be operational later this year.
“This is the wish list for the airshed.”