Enviva announces development of Virginia pellet mill

By Lisa Gibson | November 30, 2011

Just months after announcing development of a new pellet mill in North Carolina, Enviva LP announced another new facility, this time for Courtland, Va.

The 454,000-metric-ton Virginia pellet plant could be operational by the first half of 2013, but is contingent on the property being rezoned by Southampton County, as well as the completion of other permitting requirements, according to Enviva.

"As power producers increasingly turn to sustainable, renewable processed biomass fuel to reduce their carbon footprint, Enviva will continue to look to great communities like Courtland to build the future in renewable energy manufacturing," said John Keppler, Enviva chairman and CEO. "Southampton County has all the elements essential to our success: a rich wood basket, a strong and seasoned timber industry, a skilled and experienced labor force and an advantaged location relative to our export terminal."

The company also operates a 350,000-metric-ton pellet plant in Ahoskie, N.C., and is developing another in nearby Northampton County, N.C., that will produce 400,000 metric tons. Much of the pellets produced at the Virginia and North Carolina-based facilities will be exported to Enviva’s European utility customers through the company’s Port of Chesapeake, a deep-water port terminal outside of Norfolk.

The Courtland facility will bring Enviva’s annual production capacity to more than 1.5 million metric tons and will position the company as the largest pellet producer in the U.S.