Environment & Sustainability
Water & Chemicals
Northern Pulp settles water dispute, withdraws Supreme Court appeal
By Cindy Macdonald
Northern Pulp Nova Scotia has notified the Supreme Court of Nova Scotia of its withdrawal of the appeal of its Industrial Approval (IA). This withdrawal is the result of Nova Scotia Minister of Environment’s decision on outstanding items within Northern Pulp’s IA for the operation of the Pictou County pulp mill.
“There is no benefit to being involved in a lengthy court process. Working together to ensure the best environmental protection possible, while maintaining the long term stability and profitability of the mill, is the best scenario for Northern Pulp, our suppliers and our employees and their families,” explains Bruce Chapman, Northern Pulp’s general manager.
The IA issued by the provincial government almost a year ago was appealed by the mill, based on some outstanding items related to the mill’s water use.
“Government has worked very hard these past two years to ensure a cleaner and safe, operating mill, and to ensure we support Nova Scotians in their desire for an environmentally healthy and prosperous Pictou County,” said Environment Minister Margaret Miller. “The limits outlined in this decision remain lower than the limits in the mill’s 2011 approval.”
According to the decision announced on Feb. 8, Northern Pulp must achieve a maximum daily average water consumption rate of 92,310 cubic metres by Jan. 30, 2020. Calculate on an annual average, the mill must not exceed 80,000 cubic metres per day by Jan. 30, 2018 and 70,000 cubic metres per day by Jan. 30, 2020.
“With this industrial approval now in place, we can turn our focus to the important issue of a new effluent treatment facility and the closure of Boat Harbour,” says Dave Kerr, vice-president of operations with Paper Excellence Canada, which owns Northern Pulp. “We look forward to working with Nova Scotia Transportation & Infrastructure Renewal, Nova Scotia Natural Resources, other federal and provincial agencies and Pictou Landing First Nation to ensure that the remediation of Boat Harbour starts as soon as possible.”