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Canfor opens two wood pellet plants in British Columbia

Wood processing specialist Canfor has opened two new wood pellet plants worth C$58 million (€40.3m) in Canada’s British Columbia.

The two plants, located at Fort St. John and Chetwynd, were built at Canfor's existing sawmills and have a combined annual production capacity of 175,000 tonnes of wood pellets, Prince George Citizen reports.

The Chetwynd plant began operations late last year, while the Fort St. John plant reached full operations earlier this year.

"[The plants] play an important role in maximising the value of our fibre with their production of sustainable wood pellets from once waste-bound sawmill residues," Canfor CEO Don Kayne said in a statement.

Kayne says the installation of an organic rankine cycle (ORC), which functions as a power plant, has made the Chetwynd pellet plant self-sufficient in renewable heat and electricity.

The ORC converts 20% of the heat generated by the plant's energy system into electricity, up to 21,000MWh a year or enough to power 1,470 homes.

The remaining 80% of the heat is used to dry sawdust into pellets.