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Harper Government Protects Jobs in Canada's Forest Sector

OTTAWA, ONTARIO -- (Marketwire) -- 01/06/11 -- The Harper Government today announced a new investment to protect jobs in Canada's forest industry through the Pulp and Paper Green Transformation Program. This announcement will see workers in the Saint John, New Brunswick area benefit from a significant investment in the Irving Paper mills.

Our Government's top priority remains the economy," said the Minister of Natural Resources Christian Paradis. "With the economic recovery still fragile, we will continue to take action to protect jobs in Canada, including the important forestry jobs in Saint John."

As part of the Pulp and Paper Green Transformation Program, Irving Paper will receive $10.4 million to be used for upgrades at two of its mills in Saint John.

The company will invest $9.1 million of the funding in a heat recovery project at its facility in Saint John to improve the energy efficiency of the facility. The remaining $1.3 million will go toward a steam reduction project at the Irving pulp and paper mill at Reversing Falls to make more effective use of waste heat from various processes within the mill.

Despite signs of recovery in some segments of the forest sector, there remains a need to find new and more efficient ways of using wood, wood fibre and its byproducts. Today's announcement is part of the Harper Government's plan to improve the environmental performance and competitiveness of Canada's forest industry by focusing on innovation and new product development that will ultimately expand market opportunities for Canadian pulp and paper related products.

"With today's announcement, our Government is continuing to implement our plan to support Canada's forest sector and the Canadians who depend on it," said Minister Paradis. "The Government's investments are continuing our action to help our forest sector expand market opportunities for Canadian forest products, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and help protect the jobs of the families who depend on our forest sector for their livelihood."

Today's announcement builds on the success of many initiatives that are helping to sustain and enhance Canada's forest industry and the communities that depend on it. Budget 2010: Leading the Way on Jobs and Growth established the $100-million Investments in Forest Industry Transformation program to promote the development, commercialization and implementation of advanced technologies in the forest sector - helping create a world-class industry able to compete in the clean energy economy of tomorrow.

FOR BROADCAST USE:

The Harper Government announced today that it is investing $10.4 million in two Irving Paper mills in Saint John, New Brunswick, to help boost the forest industry's environmental performance and competitiveness.

The following media backgrounder is available at www.nrcan.gc.ca/media:

Protecting Jobs in Canada's Forest Sector

NRCan's news releases and backgrounders are available at www.nrcan.gc.ca/media.

Contacts:
Media may contact:
Natural Resources Canada - Ottawa
Office of the Minister
Richard Walker - Director of Communications
613-996-2007

Natural Resources Canada - Ottawa
Media Relations
613-992-4447

The general public may contact:
Mon. - Fri., 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. EST
613-995-0947
TTY: 613-996-4397 (teletype for the hearing-impaired)
[email protected]

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