The Port Townsend Paper mill is working to reduce emissions and increase efficiency by converting to natural gas. (Cydney McFarland/Peninsula Daily News)

The Port Townsend Paper mill is working to reduce emissions and increase efficiency by converting to natural gas. (Cydney McFarland/Peninsula Daily News)

Port Townsend Paper converting to natural gas to fuel plant

Engineering and environmental manager says the three-phase plan to switch over and cut emissions is already in motion.

PORT TOWNSEND — Port Townsend Paper is converting to compressed natural gas to fuel its plant in an effort to cut emissions and increase efficiency, according to Kevin Scott, the facility’s engineering and environmental manager.

The three-phase plan to convert is already in motion.

Phase one, which was a conversion of the mill’s package boiler to solely using natural gas, was completed in July.

Phase two is expected to come online this month and involves converting the lime kiln to run partially on natural gas.

The final phase will covert the mill’s biomass boiler to run on natural gas.

October targeted

Scott said plans are to have all three phases completed by the third week in October.

According to Scott, these conversions will allow the plant to cut emissions by 25 percent.

“It’s primarily environmentally driven, but there are some efficiency gains as well,” Scott said.

“Natural gas in general is easier on the operating system.”

Ongoing work

The project has been in the works for years, Scott said, and work started officially in July.

It is part of the mill’s decade-long goal to reduce emissions from fossil fuels by nearly 60 percent, according to a Port Townsend Paper press release.

“The new fuel is burning cleanly,” said Scott in the press release.

“This is an innovative step for us and our community, as we are the first large manufacturer in the state of Washington to use compressed natural gas as a main fossil fuel source,” Scott said.

“This conversion is being well executed by the Port Townsend Paper team and Xpress Natural Gas, our supplier.”

According to the U.S. Department of Energy, natural gas is an abundant resource in the United States. In fact, the U.S. leads the world in natural gas production.

Natural gas is considered a cleaner option for fossil fuels, is non-toxic and — due to its narrow range of flammability — a safe fuel to work with, according to the Port Townsend Paper press release.


Jefferson County Editor/Reporter Cydney McFarland can be reached at 360-385-2335, ext. 5550, or at [email protected].

More in News

No one was hurt in a fire at the Port Townsend Paper Mill on Saturday afternoon. East Jefferson Fire Rescue firefighters were called to the mill at 2:40 p.m. after a blaze began in an enclosed conveyor belt carrying wood chips into the mill and spread into the sixth floor, according to fire district spokesperson Phyllis Speser. The fire sent a black cloud into the sky, according to reports. The blaze in the conveyor belt was put out by 3:16 p.m. and the sixth floor fire at 3:31 p.m., Speser said. The cause remained under investigation on Sunday. Assisting were Port Ludlow Fire & Rescue, Clallam County Fire District 3, Poulsbo Fire Department and Quilcene Fire Rescue. (East Jefferson Fire Rescue)
Blaze extinguished

No one was hurt in a fire at the Port Townsend Paper… Continue reading

An artist's rendering shows the expected view of the Jamestown Healing Clinic.
(Courtesy of the Jamestown Tribe)
Clallam County Fire District 3 officials look to move Dungeness Station 31 east away from a flood and tsunami zone. They’ve begun recruiting an architect to design new stations for Dungeness and Carlsborg Station 33. Matthew Nash/Olympic Peninsula News Group
Clallam County Fire District 3 seeks architects for new fire stations

Carlsborg and Dungeness need upgrades, staff say

Forks federal disaster recovery center to remain open through Feb. 4

A federal disaster recovery center in Forks that was originally… Continue reading

Expansion approved for Sequim City Band’s rehearsal space

Sequim City Council members have unanimously approved the expansion of… Continue reading

Clallam County Sheriff’s Office seeks leads on coyote carcass dumping

The Clallam County Sheriff’s Office seeks information about the killing… Continue reading

EYE ON CLALLAM: Kilmer to attend several government meetings

Government meetings throughout the county

Weekly flight operations scheduled

There will be field carrier landing practice operations for aircraft… Continue reading

Most Read