A new plant near Burns Lake will produce pellets from mountain pine beetle- killed wood and help boost the local economy, Forests and Range Minister Pat Bell and Pinnacle Pellet chief operating officer Leroy Reitsma announced today.
"I'd like to congratulate Pinnacle Pellet on their sixth wood pellet plant and their significant contribution to the B.C. economy," said Bell. "One of my key focuses is to improve utilization, and not only will this new plant help do that by using leftover low-grade timber and wood waste for bioenergy purposes, it will also create jobs for British Columbians."
Wood pellets are a carbon-neutral alternative to fossil fuels such as coal, and will be made from mountain pine beetle-attacked timber. The estimated 400,000 tonnes per year of wood pellets to be produced at the Burns Lake facility will be exported to European and Asian markets.
"When this pellet plant starts up, we'll be creating more than 20 full- time jobs at the site and about 50 more spin-off jobs," said Reitsma. "We're looking forward to working with Babine Forest Products and the Burns Lake community that includes government agencies, community members, First Nation groups and other stakeholders."
Construction of the $30-million plant is scheduled to be complete by the end of the year.
Pinnacle Pellet Inc. is a privately held company with a reputation for producing high- quality wood pellets. The company is the largest single producer of wood pellets in North America. The combined production capacity, before including the new pellet plant output, is over 750,000 tonnes annually, most of which is sold to overseas markets.
For more information on Pinnacle Pellet Inc., please visit: http://www.pinnaclepellet.com/index.php
For more information on the Ministry of Forests and Range, please visit:http://www.gov.bc.ca/for/index.html