Unimin Canada will make a multi-million dollar investment in the modernisation of the company’s mining and manufacturing operations at Blue Mountain in the Kawartha Lakes region of Ontario. When completed, the new operation will further improve the site’s environmental footprint and support continued mining, manufacturing, and employment at the facility for many more decades. The modernisation will enable the optimization of new technologies and practices to reduce noise, dust, lighting, and use of water, as well as electricity, and will provide improved capabilities to serve coatings, polymers, glass, and ceramics markets. The long-term sustainability of this operation is one of the key goals of this project.
Upon the completion of the modernisation scheduled for early 2020, Blue Mountain’s sister operation at Nephton will be closed. Unimin will work closely with its staff and labour representatives to determine mutually effective adjustment measures for the approximately 100 employees who will be affected. During the modernisation, the Nephton facility will remain fully operational.
“To sustain our operations in the Kawartha Lakes region over the long-term, it is critical that we continue to increase efficiency levels and stay competitive in the marketplace,” said Carl Horvat, Regional General Manager. “We appreciate that this will affect a number of valued employees and will work with everyone involved over the next two years, to manage this transition effectively.”
The facility’s product, Canadian Nepheline (nepheline syenite), used worldwide, is a high-quality ingredient used in the production of glass, paint, insulation, and ceramic tile as well as in polymers and coatings. It is processed without toxic chemicals, making the process environmentally friendly.
Unimin is an application-focused minerals company providing materials solutions to its customers. Unimin is one the largest producers of quartz proppants for oil and natural gas stimulation and recovery and is a leading supplier of multi-mineral product offerings to industrial customers in glass, construction, ceramics, coatings, polymers and foundry markets.
Unimin operates a portfolio of strategically located and long life assets with 38 sand, mineral and coating processing facilities in the USA, Canada, and Mexico that serve a variety of energy and industrial customers. It offers a broad portfolio of minerals including silica sand, with feldspar, nepheline syenite, lime, clays (incl. kaolin), calcium carbonate and olivine allowing the company to offer a multi-mineral product mix to its industrial customers.
It operates an extensive logistics and distribution network with access to five Class 1 railroads, a large number of in-basin oil and gas operating terminals and strong unit-train capabilities.