SELKIRK Project Update


Project Purpose

CPS will utilize local Manitoba sand resource for Solar Glass Production

During the past few years, CPS has transformed its business to process Manitoba sand to create solar glass for renewable energy. It is the first time solar glass will be produced in Canada. This proposed solar glass manufacturing facility located in Selkirk, Manitoba will also be the only one of its kind in North America and will provide employment opportunities for communities in and around Selkirk.


The time for renewable energy products has never been greater or more welcome. CPS will provide the essential resource, sand, to produce high specification glass at our future CPS manufacturing plant in Selkirk, Manitoba which is proposed to be licenced as a separated project. The high specification glass will be used in the assembly of solar panels across North America.

It’s time to invest in Manitoba and build manufacturing capacity on our own soil rather than import solar glass from other countries. 


CPS is applying to the Province of Manitoba for an Environment Act Licence to allow for the construction and operation of the solar glass manufacturing facility in Selkirk, Manitoba.

At the same time CPS is also undergoing a regulatory review process for the updated CPS Wanipigow Sand Extraction Project in Seymourville, Manitoba which already has an Environment Act Licence. However, CPS needs to submit a ‘Notice of Alteration’ to the Province of Manitoba for the changes needed for the Seymourville project to reflect that CPS is now extracting less silica sand and using that sand exclusively for solar glass manufacturing.

CPS has hosted formal and informal community conversations in Seymourville and Hollow Water First Nations on the changes to the licenced sand extraction project. CPS is now hosting community conversations to gather feedback on the proposed solar glass manufacturing facility in Selkirk, Manitoba.

We welcome any questions at any time. Reach out if you have further questions or ideas. We are listening.

Glenn Leroux, President & CEO | | Denelle Bushie, Project Lead

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 Currently no patterned solar glass is produced in Canada or across North America; every pane of solar glass is imported from the Pacific Rim or elsewhere.

Selkirk, Manitoba is an ideal location for this solar glass manufacturing facility because it is adjacent to highways, railway and power systems.


High clarity glass to cover solar panels used for renewable energy is in high demand.

The new purpose of the CPS Wanipigow Sand Extraction Project in Seymourville, Manitoba is to provide the rare high-purity silica sand needed for solar glass manufacturing.


~300 employees
For operation of the first phase of the solar glass project. A second phase is planned for the same Selkirk, Manitoba site.


24 hours per day
7 days per week
12 months per year


Early 2025




Two years to construct.

End of Project Life (30 years from 2024): 2054

Then Project components/site will be decommissioned.


By both truck and rail

Transport trucks will not enter/leave project site through zoned residential areas in Selkirk. Access will be from Highway 4 and Walker Avenue.


Canadian Premium Sand is now a solar glass company. The multi-million-dollar sand processing plant planned for Hollow Water / Seymourville is designed to exclusively produce solar glass quality sand and we will be using that processed sand to manufacture solar glass in Selkirk.

Processing the sand found at Hollow Water / Seymourville into solar glass adds significantly more economic value than just selling the sand.  It is time for Canadians to use our valuable raw materials to create finished products on Canadian soil.  It is time to onshore our manufacturing so we ensure it is done in an environmentally responsible manner and Canadians maximize the economic benefits of our resources.

A request to amend the licence for the CPS Wanipigow Sand Extraction Project in Seymourville / Hollow Water First Nation is being prepared to reflect the new plans to use the sand to manufacture solar glass. The new project is considerably scaled back in scope and size and does not include a frac-quality sand production facility. We will be extracting 70% less sand per year compared to the original amount proposed in the 2019 plan.

As well, CPS is applying to the Province of Manitoba for an Environment Act Licence to allow for the construction and operation of the solar glass manufacturing facility in Selkirk, Manitoba.

Absolutely. We have a resource with rare characteristics proven through testing at several international labs.  Theses labs confirm the sand is suitable for solar glass. It will require processing to remove some of the iron content, but that is normal and relatively straight forward.

CPS expects to create approximately 300 full time and permanent jobs in Selkirk for Phase 1. Depending on the size of the expansion for Phase 2, about 200 more jobs will be created.  To put that in perspective, Gerdau Steel, one of the largest employers in Selkirk has nearly 550 employees. The City of Selkirk has said the CPS solar glass manufacturing plant will be the largest single new job creator in recent history.

Many of the glass manufacturing jobs will be filled by local workers. Some of the jobs in Selkirk will require specialized glass-making skills that may not be able to be sourced locally at first. But Selkirk and area have the right talent for the majority of the jobs. We see the opportunity to create jobs that keep families closer to home and invite more families to move to the area, build homes, buy groceries and volunteer in the community.

CPS is looking forward to working with the City of Selkirk to utilise recycled water from the City’s state-of-the-art wastewater treatment plant. The advanced wastewater treatment plant was one of the things that attracted us to Selkirk.  We will use this recycled water in the glass manufacturing process primarily as a coolant.  

A facility to manufacture solar glass is large.  Early design work on the Selkirk facility resulted in a footprint that is 450 meters long and 200+ meters wide at the warehouse end. Most of the operation is contained within a single building with storage for raw materials outside of the main building but also under cover or in storage silos.

While there is a lot going on in the glass manufacturing process, a Noise Impact Assessment was done which concluded that noise guidelines wouldn’t be exceeded at nearest residences.

Making glass is energy intensive but a relatively clean process.  About 30% of the energy is provided by Manitoba’s 99% renewable hydroelectricity.  The other 70% is provided by responsibly produced western Canadian natural gas. Scrubbers and heat recovery systems are employed to minimize CO­2 release.  Once the glass formulation is melted, the remainder of the process needs to be very clean as the end product, solar glass, must be spotless to be accepted by our customers.

Very small traces of iron, measured in parts per million, are found naturally in the sand at Hollow Water / Seymourville.  The fact so little iron exists in the sand is what makes it suitable for producing solar glass. Our sand treatment process, which includes scrubbing, sizing and sorting removes most of the trace amounts of iron. The best environmental practice will be implemented to manage iron extracted from the sand.

We are going through a rigorous environmental impact assessment process that addresses construction, operation and closure of the quarry, the sand processing plant in Seymourville/Hollow Water First Nation and the manufacturing plant in Selkirk. Provincial and federal environmental and workplace safety regulations today are far more stringent than in the past, and certainly more rigorous than when sand was extracted from Black Island in the period of 1920s to 1980s. Everyone is bound by much higher standards today and CPS takes this very seriously. Our neighbors will be our neighbors for 30+ years and our workers will be neighbors to the project. So, we are invested in getting it right.

(The graphic in 17 illustrates how the emissions investment in producing solar glass in Selkirk generates significant and repeatable benefits in avoiding future emissions when the solar glass is “put to work”.)

We know that 100% of the volume of sand required for the glass manufacturing plant will be transported by truck.  We are studying the option to truck sand 12 months per year because it provides us with some operational benefits and also some flexibility to adapt our trucking schedule to address stakeholder concerns.  It is important to note that truck traffic will be directed off Hwy 59 to Hwy 4 then to Walker Avenue avoiding busy residential or commercial areas of the City of Selkirk.

Producing glass requires more raw material than just sand.  Minerals such as dolomite, limestone and salt along with soda ash make up the batch.  Most of these materials will be delivered by rail.    The majority of the finished solar glass will be sent to customers by truck with some sent by rail depending on customer location and preference.

At CPS we’ve invited and included several local people to work with us because we know that to do this right, we must do it together. While the idea for this project started in Alberta, it will be made possible by leaders of Indigenous communities where the sand originates and the contributions from Selkirkians and Manitobans. And we’re also excited that the City of Selkirk has an excellent reputation as an environmental leader, has a state-of-the-art wastewater treatment plant and wants to be home to Canada’s first solar glass manufacturing plant.

CPS is a publicly traded company and is working with two investment advisors to source both debt and equity financing for our sand extraction and glass manufacturing projects.

There is no connection between CPS and CanWhite (now called Sio Silica) and no connection between the CanWhite project and this one. CPS is using our sand to make ultra-clear patterned solar glass, nothing else.

Solar glass when assembled into a solar panel becomes a carbon negative product.

Click here to see a graphic illustrating this concept. 

We welcome any questions at any time. Reach out if you have further questions or ideas. We are listening.

Glenn Leroux, President & CEO | | Denelle Bushie, Project Lead