• No Peace-of-Mind for Millinocket

  • Discussion of present-day CM&Q operations, as well as discussion of predecessors Montreal, Maine & Atlantic Railway (MMA) and Bangor & Aroostook Railroad (BAR).
Discussion of present-day CM&Q operations, as well as discussion of predecessors Montreal, Maine & Atlantic Railway (MMA) and Bangor & Aroostook Railroad (BAR).

Moderator: MEC407

  by Cowford
News is starting to dribble out that a NH company is buying the mills. No mention as to what they're planning to do with them, though.
  by MEC407
In yesterday's Portland Press Herald:
Portland Press Herald wrote:A New Hampshire company has signed an agreement to buy the shuttered Millinocket and East Millinocket mills, Gov. Paul LePage announced today.

Cate Street Capital, a Portsmouth company that invests in green energy projects, will work over the next few weeks to resolve any outstanding issues in the deal, company officials said in a statement.
Read more at: http://www.pressherald.com/news/Portsmo ... ckets.html
  by MEC407
Updated article in today's PPH:
Portland Press Herald wrote:A private equity firm plans to buy the closed paper mills in Millinocket and East Millinocket and reopen them, eventually employing more than 400 people in a region that now has an unemployment rate of 21 percent.
Gervais said the company would first open the East Millinocket mill, which closed in April, and later the Millinocket mill, which closed in 2008. The closure of both mills cost 600 jobs.
Read more at: http://www.pressherald.com/business/n_h ... 08-31.html
  by necr3849
That is some possibly good news for the area! I've been hearing word about this happening for weeks now, but the Bangor Daily has done zippo for coverage it seems. At least Portland is mentioning something.
  by Cowford
The fact that the buying organization is a "green energy" investor, coupled with some sort of subsidized arrangement for extension of a gas pipeline to the mills, should probably give one pause as to what the investor's intentions are. I'm not saying that it's nefarious by any stretch... but I would question paper production being in their medium/long-term strategy.
  by gpp111
It is good news that the Millinocket and East Millinocket plant may reopen but I am sure there are plenty of hurdles to cross first. The East Millinocket plant produced mostly newsprint and directory paper I believe.
With newspaper readership in serious decline and yellowbooks seemingly going away, I would think these two products are in serious decline so perhaps they have other products in mind for this plant. As for the Millinocket plant, it had a modern $100 million dollar plus paper machine put in that did gloss paper I believe for magazines and direct mail, but this product is very time sensitive (unlike directory and newsprint paper which often goes by rail), and thus often is trucked and not railed.

The big problem with the Millinocket plant is the fuel used there, oil, which is too expensive. There was talk of constructing a biomass plant there but this is 60M or so I have read. As for extending the natural gas line (the one connecting the Nova Scotia gasfield with New England), I had read it was not cost effective to bring these lines many miles into the state just for two plants to hook on. I would assume the Millinocket plant can not operate long term without access to natural gas or a biomass plant.

Perhaps folks dont know that a pipeline connects the two plants, it used to transport pulp slurry? between the two plants for processing. In the B&A days, a dedicated train transported wet lap, a pulp, from East M. plant to Millinocket to be made into a finished product.

Hope the plants survive for the workers sake, as well as the railroad.
  by CN9634
Good news?

http://bangordailynews.com/2011/09/15/b ... stor-says/

"EAST MILLINOCKET, Maine — A New Hampshire-based investor will buy two shuttered paper mills for an undisclosed price sometime Friday, putting as many as 500 people back to work in what could spark an economic rebirth of northern Maine’s Katahdin region...."
  by gpp111
Yes, the two mills will come back to life. The East Millinocket mill will reopen first, with orders heading out the door by the end of October. I have read that there will be a lot of product moving through Searsport.
The Millinocket mill will reopen when business dictates, but will need 10-15 million of investment before that plant is ready. This is certainly good news for central Maine and the MM&A. Also good news for the Maine Northern since some fiber might come from them to supply the mills as well.
  by gpp111
One of the two paper machines at the East Millinocket plant is planned to be up and operating in the month of October by new owner Cate Street. They hope to have the first newsprint shipped and on the water by the end of October. Evidently they have found buyers for their paper in Europe, will ship product through Searsport, and MM&A will be carrying it there. One problem, it is mud season in Maine, the wet roads make it difficult to obtain the fiber needed to get the mills running. Chip trucks are now dumping loads at the plant for the boiler there. The one paper machine has an annual capacity of 160,000 tons.

This is excellent news for the MM&A and the entire Katahdin region.
  by pumpers
What? Some businessmen making an investment in US manufacturing, and planning to hire people, and risking their own $$, because they think they can make a profit on it? I hope they tell their friends! JS