In Canada, forest industry major J.D. Irving Ltd has announced that it is investing to almost double its wood pellet production capacity at its Grand River Pellets facility to meet growing European demand.
Located in Northern New Brunswick (NB), Grand River Pellets opened in 2019 and has undertaken a new project to expand production and keep up with the high demands in the green energy market.
A new CA$30 million investment will allow the operation to increase production and help its customers reduce their carbon footprints.
The pellets produced at the New Brunswick facility are used by customers to replace coal in district heating and electricity generation plants.
One of the key markets for these pellets is Europe where countries have adopted policies and legislation to encourage the use of sustainable bioenergy to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from fossil fuels.
In order to respond to this demand, Grand River Pellets will be expanding production to almost double its capacity, from 140 000 to 220 000 tonnes per annum once commissioned in May 2023.
The plant is a value-added operation meaning it uses lower-value byproducts such as sawdust and bark from sawmills owned by J.D. Irving, as well as independent suppliers to create wood pellets.
Grand River Pellets operations are third-party certified to ensure responsible forest management and social benefits. The pellets are exported from the Port of Belledune.