Oct. 31, 2008
CHIPMAN (CNB) - The provincial government is providing interest-bearing, fully repayable loans to J.D. Irving, Ltd. to help the company make two of its sawmills more energy efficient and environmentally friendly. One is the Grand Lake Timber sawmill in Chipman; the other, the J.D. Irving, Ltd. sawmill in Deersdale, near Florenceville.
"There are opportunities for future growth in our forest sector, but to take advantage of that growth, we must ensure that our companies are in a position to maximize their potential," said Greg Byrne, minister responsible for Business New Brunswick. "Our government recognizes how important it is for companies to improve their operations, and we want to support them as they invest in upgrades and efficiencies to increase their competitive edge in the world market. I am confident that continuing to build strategic partnerships such as this one with J.D. Irving, Ltd. will help move New Brunswick further toward self-sufficiency by 2026."
Byrne was joined at today's news conference in Chipman by Jim Irving, president of J.D. Irving, Ltd.; Eugene McGinley, minister of state for seniors and housing; and Chipman Mayor Edward Farris.
The government will provide J.D. Irving, Ltd. with a $15-million term loan to upgrade the Grand Lake Timber operation and a $4.5-million term loan to upgrade the Deersdale sawmill. Both loans are intended to help J.D. Irving, Ltd. install a new biomass boiler at each site.
"We appreciate the vote of confidence the province has placed in the more than 250 skilled employees who work at our sawmills in Chipman and Deersdale and the 400 woodlands employees who provide a sustainable wood supply to these mills," said Irving. "This investment is good for the environment and good for business. It will reduce the consumption of heavy fuel oil by 11 million litres per year and will remove 36,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide from the environment."
J.D. Irving, Ltd. will install the boilers to reduce production costs and to make each facility more energy efficient and environmentally friendly. The boilers will be used in the process of drying wood product prior to shipment to various customers.
Grand Lake Timber employs up to 175 people in its mill and 300 people in its woodlands division in the Chipman area. The Deersdale sawmill employs up to 88 people and more than 100 people in its woodlands operations.
"This announcement stems from our government's commitment to help industry become more energy efficient and more productive," added Byrne. "We are committed to our forest industry, and it is encouraging to see J.D. Irving, Ltd. investing in its operations."
The government has been fulfilling its commitment to assist New Brunswick companies, helping firms such as Flakeboard, AV Cell, AV Nackawic, Groupe Savoie, and Fraser Papers.
MEDIA CONTACTS: Ryan Donaghy, communications, Business New Brunswick, 506-453-2694; Mary Keith, J.D. Irving, Ltd., 506- 632-5122.