WoodFuels LLC will invest more than $60 Million to construct a 300,000 metric ton-per-year wood pellet plant in Wilson County, North Carolina, creating 32 full-time jobs over the next three years.
The firm was established in 2007 to build, own and operate a number of densified pellet fuel manufacturing plants throughout the southeast. These plants will supply European coal-fired electric utilities with renewable, low-carbon power generation fuel. The project is also expected to have a long-term, positive impact on the construction, rail and forestry industries.
“Our choice of North Carolina was based on exceptional support from local, county and state agencies over the past year,” said Steve Mueller, president of International WoodFuels. “Our company is excited about its selection of Sims for its first plant and we look forward to establishing additional production facilities in North Carolina to meet the increasing demand in Europe for sustainably harvested woody biomass. The combination of plentiful fiber supply, a strong rail network and two exceptional port facilities in North Carolina offers WoodFuels reliable, cost-efficient and long-term resources suited to a multi-decade export business.”
As an incentive the project was made possible in part by a $100,000 grant from the One North Carolina Fund, said Gov. Bev Perdue. “Manufacturers are locating here because our state’s investments in education, infrastructure and workforce development have created a top-notch business climate.”
The One NC Fund provides financial assistance, through local governments, to attract business projects that will stimulate economic activity and create new jobs in the state. Companies receive no money up front and must meet job creation and investment performance standards to qualify for grant funds. These grants also require and are contingent upon local matches.