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Belledune Port Authority reports 2021 fiscal year results

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Dry Bulk,

The Belledune Port Authority (BPA) continues to be a strong economic contributor to northern New Brunswick, reporting a second consecutive year of profitable operations despite the global supply chain slowdown.

The Port is reporting a CAN$1.6 million net profit for the fiscal year of 2021 – 2022, supported by revenues of CAN$8.2 million with a return on revenue of 19.8%. Total tonnage handled by the Port in 2021 was 1 837 766 mega t.

“We are very pleased and proud of our financial results this year, which is thanks to the hard work of our team and the many tenants and suppliers who partner with us at the Port,” said President and CEO, Denis Caron. “This strong performance continues our proud history of bringing prosperity to the region.”

The BPA’s financial results were shared publicly at the Annual General Meeting on 9 June 2022, along with highlights from the year’s activities.

The 2021 profits are due in part to a 63% increase in wood pellet and wood chips exported through the BPA’s marine terminals compared to the previous year, making the BPA Atlantic Canada’s top biomass exporter. The Port is supporting efforts to transition away from fossil fuels to biomass, and with its partner QSL – Eastern Division, has constructed a new wood pellet storage facility on the Port’s Terminal 3. With this expansion, the Port and QSL are projecting another increase in exports in 2022.

“All in all, 2021 was a great year and one that laid the foundation for better things to come,” said Chair of the Board of Directors, Hermel Vienneau. “Board colleagues and I are confident that we are on the cusp of major economic development progress at the Port.”

Additional 2021 highlights

The BPA master development plan and green energy hub

The BPA, with help from Hatch Consulting, is finalising a long-term vision to expand the BPA’s existing capacity while seeking out clean energy projects with the potential to kick off a green economic transition for the region. Stakeholder, public and rights holder engagement is being completed with a final report anticipated for Autumn 2022.

First Nations tripartite committee for smelter decommissioning

Coming together in the spirit of partnership and good faith, the BPA, Pabineau First Nation, and Eel River Bar First Nation have created a tripartite group to actively engage and work with Glencore Canada Ltd on the current decommissioning of the Brunswick Smelter in Belledune, New Brunswick, adjacent to the Port of Belledune. Grounded in proactive sharing of information and working collaboratively, the tripartite committee is actively continuing to move this project forward.

Proactive underwater noise study

In 2021, the BPA undertook a voluntary study to survey and report on underwater noise in the area around the Port and the impact it can potentially have on wildlife. This was a proactive project and will help to assess risks and identify areas to improve. This work falls under the Port’s Green Marine Certification efforts and the results will be reported to stakeholders, rights holders, and the community in 2022.

Terminals 3 and 4 expansion and upgrade project

Work on this important expansion project continued in 2021 the construction of additional cribs to expand the terminals footprint and build a new tug wharf. Rock and fill were moved between Terminals 3 and 4, creating in a safer operating area, and stabilisation of a section of Terminal 4 for additional laydown area. As a part of this work, a habitat compensation project was carried out in 2021. Habitat locations were chosen in consultation with First Nations’ fishers and much of the work was carried out by fishers from the surrounding communities and Eel River Bar First Nation. Monitoring of the work will commence in 2023 to assess the success of the habitat locations.

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