February 2, 2004

Industry partners will use landfill gas to power paper plant

Intersan, Gaz MÈtro and Cascades are joining forces on an innovative energy-from-waste project which will use recovered landfill gas to power Cascades' fine paper plant in Saint-JÈrÙme.

Since 2001, Intersan, a subsidiary of Canadian Waste, has been using bioreactor technology at its Sainte-Sophie waste disposal site to provide closed-circuit leachate management. Re-circulated through waste materials, leachate speeds up the decomposition process that generates landfill gas. Gas generated at the Sainte-Sophie facility is recovered to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and soon, rather than being burned, will be used to power the Cascades plant.

Gaz MÈtro, Quebec's leading natural gas distributor, will distribute the gas through underground pipelines linking the Sainte-Sophie site to Cascades' manufacturing plant, some 13 kilometres away.

Pending approval by the Quebec Energy Board, the initiative should allow Cascades to meet a large part of its Saint-JÈrÙme plant energy requirements for the next ten years. "While offering the advantage of lowering our production costs, this unique project also translates into enormous environmental gains," said Denis Jean, president and CEO of Cascades Fine Paper division.

Cascades will invest $2 million in necessary work to convert its plant. On the basis of projected energy savings, the company anticipates a short return on its investment. The supply from Intersan's facility should begin before the end of 2004 and will be phased in gradually. "At full production, 36 million cubic metres are expected to be available to power our operations," said Jean.

"Our site is a genuine gas deposit that offers a useful, clean and affordable source of energy. Intersan is particularly proud to operate a facility that will actively help produce green energy and contribute to the success of a major local company," Intersan vice-president Hubert Bourque commented.

The energy potential of landfill gas also provides new prospects for Gaz MÈtro. Having researched at length the calorific and environmental potential of this energy source, the utility brings sound industry knowledge and expertise to the joint venture. "Well within our core business of distributing gas throughout Quebec, our involvement in this project is an assurance of efficiency, reliability and safety," stated Sophie Brochu, Gaz MÈtro vice-president, adding that "landfill gas conversion is a large step towards sustainable development."

"Through this experience, Intersan, Gaz MÈtro and Cascades will demonstrate the energy potential and environmental advantages of landfill gas conversion. This project proves our shared objective of innovating and showing the way towards a greater use of alternative resources. At every level, this undertaking promotes long-term sustainable development," Jean said.

More information is available from StÈphane Mailhot at Cascades, 819/352-0982; Martin Dussault at Intersan, 819/820-5655; or StÈphanie Trudeau at Gaz MÈtro, 514/598-3656.

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