Pacolet Milliken completes first RNG investment

By Pacolet Milliken LLC | February 03, 2023

Pacolet Milliken LLC, a sustainability-focused, family-owned investment firm, announced the consummation of a joint venture investment with Evensol LLC, a leading developer of renewable biogas assets, on January 18, 2023. In partnership with Duke Energy, Pacolet and Evensol's joint venture will own and operate two renewable natural gas (RNG) projects at landfills in North Carolina, specifically the Upper Piedmont Renewables and Foothills Renewables projects (UP&F). UP&F will process landfill gas generated at the project sites and convert that gas into RNG that can then be injected into regional pipelines to supply homes, vehicles, and businesses with low carbon, renewable fuel.

Evensol, based in Sisters, Oregon, was founded in 2013 with a mission of acquiring and developing renewable biogas projects. Because of Evensol's expertise and experience, the company was an established, attractive partner for Pacolet. "This is a compelling transaction for Evensol, and a clear indication of the strong value created with UP&F's development and near-term operational success," said David Wentworth, Chief Executive Officer of Evensol. "We are excited about the growth potential of partnering with Pacolet and look forward to additional future RNG projects."

"This transaction represents a significant next step in growing Pacolet's sustainable infrastructure portfolio and meets both our financial and ESG goals. While we own landfill gas to electricity projects, this marks our first foray into the RNG line of business" said William Crawford, Chief Executive Officer of Pacolet. "We believe that Evensol's market-leading expertise in development, construction and operations will support Pacolet in accelerating projects across the renewable fuels landscape."

Evensol initiated development on both the Upper Piedmont Renewables and Foothills Renewables projects several years ago and then broke ground in the fourth quarter of 2021. Once completed, both projects are expected to produce roughly 500,000 dekatherms of RNG each year. Demand for RNG continues to grow as the United States transitions to using more and more renewable fuels. This need is being addressed on a Federal level by the Renewable Fuels Standard program and by various State-level programs, such as California's Low Carbon Fuel Standard and Oregon's Clean Fuels Program.

"We continue to see Evensol, UP&F and future RNG developments as a blueprint for how we address environmental challenges, and at the same time, grow shareholder value. We believe this is the start of a long-standing partnership with Evensol and will actively look to pursue additional investments and projects in the RNG space," said Lance Jordan, Chief Investment Officer of Power & Infrastructure at Pacolet.

Kirkland & Ellis LLP is serving as legal advisor to Pacolet Milliken.