Saskatchewan Minerals Inc.

Saskatchewan Minerals Inc.

August 08, 2006 10:00 ET

Saskatchewan Minerals Inc.: "Clean Coal" Technology to Transform Chaplin Plant

CHAPLIN, SASKATCHEWAN--(CCNMatthews - Aug. 8, 2006) - Saskatchewan Minerals Inc. today announced plans for a major overhaul of its sodium sulphate processing facility near Chaplin in southwest Saskatchewan.

The $25-million upgrade, scheduled to begin immediately, will include replacing its current natural gas-fired burners with state-of-the-art "clean coal" technology. A zero emissions scrubbing system will be installed as well as specialized regeneration equipment. The project is expected to be completed by September 30, 2007.

This is the first retrofit of the Chaplin processing plant in 24 years and involves what is clearly showcase technology. It will result in zero emissions of typical by-products of burning coal: sulphur dioxide, sulphur trioxide, nitrogen oxide and mercury, and will allow for the plant to capture most of its emissions of carbon dioxide - a greenhouse gas blamed for global warming.

"The changes announced today will not only make our Chaplin plant the most modern sodium sulphate production line in North America, it will be the cleanest coal-fired plant of any type, anywhere in the world," says General Manager Dale Hallborg. "This is a significant capital investment and demonstrates our commitment to our customers, to the environment and to utilizing Saskatchewan's own energy reserves." Up to ten new permanent positions will be created as a result, as well as 40 person-years of employment during the construction period.

The clean coal technology being employed was developed by Airborne Clean Energy Ltd. of Calgary. Airborne Chief Operating Officer Murray Mortson says his company has developed and patented a unique and proprietary process that significantly reduces pollution caused when burning coal. The process allows for the efficient burning of inexpensive high sulphur content coal while dramatically reducing environmental impact.

Saskatchewan Minerals Inc. is one of the North American market leaders producing high quality natural sodium sulphate used in detergents, pulp and paper, glass, textiles and other products. The mine has been in operation since 1948 and is today one of the world's largest natural producers of detergent grade sodium sulphate.

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