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CBC's Information Morning visits Pictou to talk Northern Pulp's future

CBC Radio's Information Morning was in Pictou, N.S., on Thursday to hear from local leaders, business people and Northern Pulp employees.

The mill first opened in 1967 — and has had its share of critics since then

A looming deadline to close Northern Pulp's Boat Harbour treatment facility in Pictou County means tensions are rising in the community. (David Laughlin/CBC)

CBC Radio's Information Morning was in Pictou, N.S., on Thursday for a live show dedicated to the future of Northern Pulp.

The mill is facing a legislated deadline of January 2020 to close its Boat Harbour effluent treatment facility, but has indicated it needs a one-year extension to get a replacement plant up and running. It cannot operate without a treatment facility.

The company's controversial proposal includes treating effluent at a new facility on site and piping the waste into the Northumberland Strait. That proposal, which is undergoing an environmental assessment, has divided many locals and raised questions about the environmental and economic implications if the mill is forced to shut down. 

You can listen to the full show here:

Information Morning's Portia Clark broadcasts a special program from the deCoste Centre in Pictou. 1:17:45

Here are the guests that Information Morning host Portia Clark spoke with during the live show at the deCoste Centre:

Portia Clark was at the deCoste Performing Arts Centre in Pictou on Thursday. (David Laughlin/CBC)
  • Gary Nowlan, Information Morning's community contact, kicked off the program talking about growing up in Pictou County. You can hear his interview beginning at the 1:08 mark.
     
  • Jack Fraser is a retired employee of Northern Pulp. He worked at the mill for 34 years and lives in New Glasgow, N.S. You can hear his interview beginning at 7:51.
     
  • Joan Baxter is the author of The Mill: 50 Years of Pulp and Protest. You can hear her interview beginning at 14:14. 

    Joan Baxter is a journalist and author of The Mill: 50 Years of Pulp & Protest. (David Laughlin/CBC)
  • Don MacKenzie is a long-time employee of Northern Pulp and and president of Unifor Local 440, which represents 277 employees at the mill. You can hear his interview beginning at 21:55. 
     
  • Bruce Chapman is Northern Pulp's general manager. You can hear his interview beginning at 29:49.
     
  • Robert Parker, warden of Pictou County, spoke about divisions in the community over Northern Pulp. You can hear his interview beginning at 37:44. 

    Robert Parker is warden of the Municipality of Pictou County. (David Laughlin/CBC)
  • Andrea Paul is chief of Pictou Landing First Nation and spoke about why she's counting the days until the Boat Harbour treatment facility closes in 2020. You can hear her interview beginning at 43:28. 

    Chief Andrea Paul is with the Pictou Landing First Nation. (David Laughlin/CBC)
  • Jayme Fraser and Ethan Francis, students at Pictou Landing First Nation School, spoke about what they're looking forward to when Boat Harbour is cleaned up. You can hear their interview beginning at 50:15. 
     
  • Allan McCarthy is a fisherman and spokesperson for the Northumberland Fishermen's Association who took part in a blockade against Northern Pulp's survey vessels last summer. You can hear his interview beginning at 52:37.

    Allan McCarthy speaks for the Northumberland Fisherman's Association. (David Laughlin/CBC)
  • Eric Williams owns Williams Brothers sawmill in Barney's River and spoke about the struggle for sawmill owners to stay afloat if Northern Pulp closes. You can hear his interview beginning at 1:00:30.
     
  • Gerald Battist runs Gerald Battist Trucking in New Glasgow and spoke about having to lay off most of his staff if the mill closes. You can hear his interview beginning at 1:06:28. 
     
  • Wade Prest is the past president of the Nova Scotia Woodlot Owners and Operators Association and told Portia Clark the province's forests cannot survive with the pulp mill. You can hear his interview beginning at 1:08:57.

    Wade Prest is past president of the Nova Scotia Woodlot Owners and Operators Association. (David Laughlin/CBC)

With files from CBC Radio's Information Morning

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