Date: February 16, 2011
Source: Enviva LP
Enviva LP (Richmond, VA), which manufactures processed biomass said it had acquired a Chesapeake VA port terminal from Giant Cement Company to meet with the increasing demand for renewable biomass overseas, especially in Europe. The company plans to boost the capacity of the port to receive, store and load in excess of 3 million tons per year. The acquisition will help the company consolidate its shipments as well as track their movement from forest to plant to port, acting as a central hub to a biomass production plant near Ahoskie, NC and others that are currently under construction. John Keppler, CEO of Enviva, said that the strategic location of the terminal will decrease the expenditure and transportation time incurred throughout the supply chain, thereby improving Enviva's environmental footprint.
Enviva Acquires Deep Water Port Terminal in Norfolk, Virginia Region
Purchase facilitates export of approximately three million tons of biomass fuel to European customers
Enviva LP ("Enviva"), a leading manufacturer of processed biomass, today announced it has acquired a Chesapeake, Va. port terminal to satisfy growing overseas demand for renewable biomass. Previously owned by the Giant Cement Company ("Giant"), Enviva's investment in the terminal will create the capacity to receive, store, and load in excess of three million tons of sustainably generated woody biomass for export each year.
Worldwide demand for biomass has surged in recent years, particularly in Europe, among utilities attracted to fossil fuel alternatives that reduce carbon dioxide emissions. The Chesapeake port terminal will enhance Enviva's ability to meet this demand. One of the few on the Eastern Seaboard suitable for the export of wood pellets, the terminal will serve as the shipment point for biomass manufactured at Enviva's just-announced wood pellet plant in nearby Ahoskie, N.C., as well as several additional production sites under development by Enviva in the resource-rich Mid-Atlantic region. Enviva will continue to ship wood pellets manufactured in the Gulf region, including its Mississippi plants, from Mobile, Ala.
"The Chesapeake region has for a long time been a key nexus of international trade in the United States," said Enviva CEO John Keppler. "We are particularly excited to be one of the first green economy manufacturers to rebalance the flow of trade in favor of exports from this port in Virginia."
The purchase of the terminal is a reflection of the company's commitment to ensuring the safety, reliability, sustainability, and quality of its product. "We can now closely monitor our product from forest to plant to port, maintaining facilities that meet our high standards for product excellence and safety," said Keppler. "Plus the terminal's strategic location will decrease transportation time and costs through our entire supply chain, greatly benefitting our customers and improving the environmental footprint of our logistics."
Enviva's plans for investment in and expansion of the terminal will require 40 to 60 skilled tradesmen and contractors during the initial phase of construction, and the terminal's permanent staff of 12 is expected to double by the third year of operation under Enviva, which will use local maintenance contracts and other vendors whenever possible. The terminal upgrades are expected to be complete in November 2011, to coincide with pellet production at Enviva's Ahoskie, N.C. facility. Giant will continue to use a portion of the terminal for cement sales.
Enviva's port terminal can accommodate a wide range of ships and loading options required for the export of more than 40,000 metric tons of Enviva's wood pellets per vessel. "The port has handled our cement volumes for 11 years and has been an important asset for our company," said Duncan Gage, President and CEO of Giant. "It is one of the only assets of its type on the Eastern Seaboard, and we believe that Enviva is well-positioned to capitalize on the potential of this terminal and increase its importance to the region."
Enviva's mission is to become the preferred partner and supplier of sustainably sourced wood pellets and other processed biomass to serve power generation and industrial customers seeking to decrease their dependence on fossil fuels and reduce their carbon footprint. Enviva has been supplying wood chips and wood pellets to customers in the U.S. and Europe since 2007, and recently announced a long-term wood pellet supply contract with Electrabel, a subsidiary of GDF SUEZ Group, one of the largest utilities in the world. In addition to its Ahoskie, N.C. facility, the company also recently acquired two Mississippi-based wood pellet manufacturers, Piney Wood Pellets and CKS Energy, Inc. For more information about Enviva, including job opportunities, go to www.envivabiomass.com.
For more information, contact:
Elizabeth Woodworth, +1 804-381-4000 x 170