From the Forest to the Office and Home|
Bowater - A case study in Newsprint and Kraft Pulp Production
Growing the Farm of the Future!
When you "farm" a spread almost as big as Denmark, you have to be more than a "hewer and drawer".
Feller-buncher and grapple-skidder harvesting trees.
Bowater Thunder Bay is an industry leader in the move toward processing the tree where it's felled. This allows better utilization of the trees harvested, while reducing waste and substantially reducing the Company's operating costs.
Almost 400 highly-trained and skilled employees of Bowater's Thunder Bay Woodlands Operations plan and manage a land-based resource of some 35,000 sq. km, of which more than 30,000 sq. km are productive.
They manage, harvest and renew an immense crop of highest quality timber, all on a sustainable basis. The harvest consists mainly of Jackpine and Spruce softwood, and Aspen hardwood. Balsam Fir provides an additional, small percentage of the softwood.
Bowater's Thunder Bay mill operation is the principle consumer of the annual harvest of 3.5 million cubic metres.
In recent years, Bowater has greatly increased the efficiency of its resource use through innovative agreements with more than ten local sawmills and a veneer mill. The Company supplies these mills with logs to produce stud and dimension lumber and veneer, and the mills provide Bowater with their byproducts, once a wasted resource, of quality wood chips for papermaking and hog fuel for energy generation.
The harvesting process is usually started by a "feller-buncher" which grips the trees singly or in small bunches and saws them off at ground level. This eliminates waste and the clutter of stumps. The buncher then piles the trees in tiny bundles for the "grappler skidder" to pick up and carry to the roadside. Logs destined for sawmills are cleaned by the "delimber" and cut to lengths by the "slasher", then graded and loaded for transport.
Trees harvested for use in paper production are fed into a portable "chipper" which cleans, delimbs the smallest branches, and then debarks and chips the wood into uniform-sized small pieces which are blown straight into single or tandem trailer chip trucks. These trucks transport the chips straight to the Bowater Thunder Bay Mill 24 hours-a-day.
A portable chipper fills truck with chips for delivery to the paper mill.