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J.D. Irving, Limited Celebrates Earth Day with Eco-Friendly Initiatives

Saint John, NB: J.D. Irving, Limited (JDI) marks Earth Day every year by celebrating its employees’ day-to-day commitment to reducing the company’s environmental footprint.

Across several of its divisions, JDI has made significant reductions in greenhouse gas emissions through a combination of investments in energy efficiency and fuel oil substitution programs.

In the last five years, the company has reduced its oil consumption by 156 million litres and greenhouse gas emissions by 346,000 tonnes annually - the equivalent of taking 66,500 cars off the road.

Some examples of JDI’s efforts in 2012 to reduce its footprint on air, land, and water:

Transportation Division
In 2012 the Transportation Division significantly reduced fuel usage by continuing to develop more efficient operating practices and employ new fuel-efficient technologies:

• Fuel use tracking and operator incentive bonus programs
• Small “trackmobile” units to move rail cars in yard operations instead of using locomotives
• Shutting down one engine on offshore supply vessels when all engines are not needed
• High efficiency tires and low-wind-resistance skirting on highway transport trailers

Reductions achieved during the year were 5.8 million litres of fuel and 15,600 tonnes of greenhouse gases.

Since 2008, the Transportation Division has reduced annual fuel consumption by 13.4 million litres, eliminating 36,000 tonnes of greenhouse gases.

Sawmills Division
By the end of 2012, 90 percent of the wood ash generated by biomass boilers was diverted from landfills to beneficial uses such as agricultural fertilizer.

A new peat harvesting and processing plant in Juniper, NB uses wood residues from Deersdale and Baker Brook Sawmills in top soil and mulch products. The first bags of consumer product were shipped to markets in Atlantic Canada this spring.

Since 2007, our forest products operations have diverted about 80,000 tonnes of forestry residual by-products (primarily sawdust, bark, and wood ash) per year from landfills to compost manufacturing sites and agricultural land spreading applications. This represents about 70 percent of the total waste generated from our operations.

Our sawmills have made the largest contribution to this effort, diverting a maximum of about 90 percent of all wastes to beneficial uses. In 2012 our combined operations achieved 80 percent diversion.

Pulp and Paper Division
In 2012 the Irving Pulp & Paper mill in Saint John installed new equipment for its air scrubbing systems, which led to considerable reductions in releases of fine dust. In addition more biomass fuel was used in place of fossil fuels, reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The reductions in air emissions were as follows:

Greenhouse Gases: 11% reduction
Dust: 60% reduction

In 2011 the Irving Paper mill in Saint John stopped using heavy fuel oil in favour of natural gas, resulting in the following reductions in air emissions:

Greenhouse Gases: 18% reduction
SO2: 93% reduction
NOx: 16% reduction
Dust: 21% reduction

Cavendish Farms Division
Cavendish Farms began operation of a compressed natural gas (CNG) station. Natural gas is transported by truck from the New Brunswick pipeline to the station and distributed to the Cavendish Farms plants in New Annan, PEI. The project replaces heavy oil with much cleaner-burning natural gas, resulting in the following reductions:

Greenhouse Gases: 15% reduction (over 10,000 tonnes per year)
Heavy Fuel: 88% reduction
SO2: 88% reduction

Reducing our Carbon Footprint with Growing Trees
JDI has been planting trees for over 50 years; to date the company has planted over 940 million trees. The average growing tree can absorb up to one tonne of CO2 over its life span. That’s a lot of carbon sequestration - in fact, over the next 50 years, our forest products operations will absorb more carbon than we emit. This year we will plant 25 million trees, and these 25 million trees will sequester approximately 6.6 million tonnes of CO2 over the next 50 years. That’s the equivalent of taking about 1,322, off the road!


Media contact
Geoff Britt
Communications Officer
J.D. Irving, Limited
(506) 648-2609