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Wood pellet operation expected to create dozens of jobs on Northern Peninsula

Hawke's Bay is located on the western side of the Great Northern Peninsula, near Port Saunders.
Hawke's Bay is located on the western side of the Great Northern Peninsula, near Port Saunders. - Google maps

Plan calls for plant to be constructed in Hawke's Bay

ST. JOHN’S, N.L.

Active Energy Group (AEG) is planning to construct a $19.7-million wood pellet plant in Hawke’s Bay.

The proposed plant will produce 55,000-65,000 metric tonnes of CoalSwitch wood pellets annually for export to Poland through the local port, according to a news release from the Department of Fisheries and Land Resources on Thursday, Nov. 29.

Two five-year commercial permits have already been issued to Timberlands International Inc., a subsidiary of AEG, to cut a total of 100,000 cubic metres of timber annually in forest management districts 17 and 18 on the Great Northern Peninsula, which will support the operation of the plant.

"This agreement is a significant achievement for the company and for the Province of Newfoundland and Labrador, and will reap rewards for all parties in the years to come,” Timberland International Ltd. managing director Richard Spinks said in the release.

It’s anticipated at least 25 full-time positions associated with operations at the plant will be created along with somewhere between 30-50 jobs in harvesting and trucking.

The cutting permits require that 25 per cent of the harvest be made available to commercial sawmillers for first right of refusal, the release states. Wood fibre requirements of 148,000 cubic metres would be provided via the cutting permits and by purchase from existing forest operators.

AEG’s external investors are fully funding construction of the proposed plant.

AEG has an agreement with Cobant, a Polish research, development and coal recovery/production company, to provide wood pellets to supplement coal use in Poland’s residential heating market.

More information to come.

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