Canadian Premium Sand‘ (CPS) decision follows an extensive evaluation of possible options in Canada and the United States. Selkirk provides logistical, operational efficiency and environmental advantages over alternatives and meets the following key selection criteria:
- Proximity to CPS’s high grade silica sand quarry operation. The quarry is located near Hollow Water First Nation and the community of Seymourville, approximately 160 kilometres north of Selkirk;
- Access to abundant and cost-efficient supplies of natural gas, renewable hydroelectricity and industrial grade water;
- Access to end markets through rail and highway infrastructure with direct connection to the major logistics hub in Winnipeg, Manitoba;
- Access to a sizeable labour pool encompassing management, engineering, technical, trades and semi-skilled personnel;
- Availability of industrial zoned land parcels of sufficient size to accommodate the initial manufacturing facility with room to accommodate CPS’s growth ambitions for future facilities; and
- Alignment with the community’s vision of sustainable and responsible commercial development for the next 30+ years.
The company’s manufacturing facility will produce high specification patterned solar glass utilizing a rolled manufacturing process and will provide approximately 300 direct employment opportunities once in operation. CPS’s products will predominately be used in the manufacture of solar panels in North America — a rapidly expanding industry driven by an objective to decarbonize the electrical grid with solar power’s proportional contribution increasing from 5 percent today to as much as 40 percent by 2035.
“It is difficult to imagine a better location than the City of Selkirk and the Province of Manitoba for our solar glass manufacturing facility based on the criteria we set. Collaborating with the City of Selkirk has been extremely positive, highly professional and I commend their drive to realize their community’s vision for sustainable economic development,” said Glenn Leroux, President and CEO of CPS.
Currently, there are no facilities in North America that produce this type of glass. All solar panels manufactured in North America using patterned solar glass are made with glass imported from China and other Asia Pacific countries. Locating a solar glass manufacturing facility in Selkirk will add significantly to the sustainability and supply chain security for CPS’s solar panel manufacturing clients. Additionally, CPS believes its glass manufacturing facility will be the anchor industry for an expanding centre of excellence, enabling other complementary businesses to locate in Manitoba.
“We are very pleased CPS has selected Selkirk to build and operate its solar glass facility,” explained Tim Feduniw, the Director of Sustainable Economic Development at the City of Selkirk. “This initiative aligns with our commitment to sustainable development and will create significant economic benefits for our community. The City of Selkirk is committed to working with CPS in securing a suitable site within urban limits that supports and enables the successful launch of this initiative.”
The Company’s solar glass project would not be possible without the support of its Participation Agreement partners; the Hollow Water First Nation and the incorporated community of Seymourville. These communities have a historic relationship with Selkirk and the supply of silica sand to industry from nearby Black Island dating back to the 1920s through to the 1980s.
“We have received encouragement, understanding and patience from leadership groups in both communities as we transitioned our business plan from a focus on fracture proppant to our future Selkirk-based solar glass manufacturing facility,” noted Mr. Leroux. “We will continue to work closely with the communities as we bring this project from planning into operation.”