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Nova Scotia’s foresters concerned as deadline looms for Northern Pulp

January 22, 2019  By  Ellen Cools

Members of Nova Scotia’s forest industry are becoming uneasy as the legislated closure date of Northern Pulp’s Boat Harbour treatment facility looms, with no replacement facility approved.

According to the CBC, the mill takes between 35 and 40 per cent of the pulpwood from foresters in the province, and Nova Scotia’s top 11 sawmills – which account for 96 per cent of the province’s lumber – have ties to it.

Jeff Bishop, the executive director of Forest Nova Scotia, told the CBC that he has received an increasing number of calls from industry members concerned about the potential shutdown of Northern Pulp and what it might mean for their livelihoods.

The mill is working to complete an assessment application to pump treated effluent into the Northumberland Strait, but has faced backlash and protests from the fishing industry in the area. Their Boat Harbour treatment facility is scheduled to close next year, and Nova Scotia Premier Stephen McNeil has refused calls to extend the deadline.


Andy Kekacs, executive director of the Nova Scotia Woodlot Owners and Operators Association, said losing the mill would have a “significant disruption” on the industry, ranging from sawmills to contractors, to logging truck drivers and rural businesses dependent on forestry workers.

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