Al-Pac’s approach to renewable energy is key to helping our mill grow beyond our traditional pulp market. Through research, innovation and investment, we relentlessly pursue several emerging clean energy initiatives.
Our renewable energy source comes from forest biomass. We combust bark and other organic residual material from the pulping process to create enough steam to drive three large turbines. These turbines are generating up to 98 megawatts of electricity. That is enough energy to self-sustain our energy needs at our Millsite. The surplus power contributes to the Alberta electrical grid, enough to power, on average, 15,000 households each year.
In 2012, we commissioned new equipment as part of the Green Transformation Program, which further increased our capacity to generate clean energy. We achieved this by the construction of a new 138 kV transmission line and a condensing steam turbine. We also have a power substation at the Millsite to control and regulate power coming in and out.
We are continually looking for ways to fully harness the potential of this source of energy and run our operations in the most environmentally friendly way possible.