Pulp and Paper Mill fined $400,000 for Environmental Protection Act Violations

Schrieber ON (9/28/2021) – Convicted – AV Terrace Bay Inc.

Court Location – Schrieber

Description of Offences – The conviction relates to permitting the discharge of Total Reduced Sulphur (TRS) that exceeded ministry standards for air discharges.

Dates of Offences – During the period from July 6-7, 2017

Date of Conviction – December 14, 2020

Penalty Imposed – AV Terrace Bay was convicted of one violation under the Environmental Protection Act and was fined $400,000, plus a victim fine surcharge of $100,000 with six months to pay the fine.

The court also imposed a Section 190 Court Order under the Environmental Protection Act that requires both the installation of a properly functioning electrostatic precipitator by the end of 2020 and its continued operation for at least two years, to help reduce the facility’s total reduced sulphur air discharges.

Background –

AV Terrace Bay Inc. owns and operates a paper mill on Mill Road in the Township of Terrace Bay and produces northern bleached softwood kraft pulp.
AV Terrace Bay operates under a ministry approval and under the Technical Standards to Manage Air Pollution, which is published by the Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks. The Standards require adherence to prescribed limits for air discharges and for regular reporting of discharge levels.
The prescribed limit for discharging total reduced sulphur to air is 27 parts per billion (ppb) over a 10-minute averaging period.
Total Reduced Sulphur (TRS) is composed of various volatile oxygen-free sulphur compounds, including hydrogen sulphide and mercaptans.
AV Terrace Bay operates two community ambient monitoring stations 24 hours/day and the air is measured at these locations.
Evidence indicates that between July 2-4, 2017, there were 31 exceedances of total reduced sulphur compounds and between July 6-7, 2017, there were 18 exceedances of total reduced sulphur compounds.
Since these violations, AV Terrace Bay has made changes to their facility intended in-part to reduce future Total Reduced Sulphur (TRS) exceedances. However, the implementation of these changes unexpectedly resulted in more TRS exceedances. The company acknowledged that these exceedances occurred and were considered an aggravating factor with respect to the current sentence.
The ministry’s Investigations and Enforcement Branch investigated and laid charges resulting in the conviction.

Contacts Gary Wheeler Communications Branch gary.s.wheeler@ontario.ca 416-314-6666