Statement From Mark Mosher, Vice President, Irving Pulp And Paper Division
We work hard to ensure we meet and surpass all environmental regulations.
In 1995, the pulp mill owned by Irving Pulp & Paper, Limited invested $300 million to modernize and significantly improve the mill’s environmental performance. This investment allowed the mill to become compliant with the newly released federal emission regulations by using world-first technology.
Today the pulp mill is:
- The only mill in North America to meet environmental regulations without the use of a large external lagoon. As the pulp mill is located in the middle of the city and on a 100+ year old site, a traditional treatment lagoon was not practical.
- The only mill in North America to operate without a solid waste landfill by reusing or reducing its solid waste. The pulp mill treats and diverts virtually all solid waste to value added materials.
- Over 95% energy self-sufficient through significant efficiency investments.
- One of the lowest odour emitting pulp mills in North America through investments to collect and incinerate most emission sources.
Recently Irving Pulp & Paper was charged for releasing “deleterious substance in water frequented by fish”. It is important to note that no fish died in the river, and that all releases were self-reported to regulators.
Irving Pulp and Paper did fail the current laboratory test which requires more than 50% of rainbow trout to survive 4 days in 100% undiluted effluent. This test does not reflect the true situation. Environment Canada has indicated this laboratory test result may be misleading if used in simplistic ways – e.g., failing to allow for dilution or other mitigating factors that would be present in the real world. We agree with Environment Canada. This is one of the reasons for our court challenge. To be very clear, fish in the river were not exposed to 4 days of 100% undiluted effluent. And fish did not die in the river.
We take very seriously our responsibility to safeguard healthy waterways and fish habitat and accountability for our work. Our longstanding record of award winning research, conservation and pollution prevention efforts at Irving Pulp and Paper speak to this.
Our appeal is for reliable fact-based testing that reflects and holds us fully accountable for the actual environmental circumstances.