Target: Governor of North Carolina, Patrick McCrory
Goal: Applaud International WoodFuels LLC for its work to bring new wood-recycling technology to North Carolina and the United States.
The green energy company International WoodFuels LLC plans to build a wood pellet recycling plant in Wilson County, North Carolina, investing over $60 million over a three year period in the emerging technology. The new plant will perform a process of densification on unused wood waste in order to prepare it for feasible biofuel use. Applaud the organization for bringing this new technology to North Carolina and the United States.
The process that the new wood recycling facility will implement is known as torrefaction. Excess wood chippings that have no other commercial value are broken down and pelletized. A pre-treatment process of heating the biomass material to between 260 to 320 degrees Celsius causes the fibrous structure of organic wood matter to partially break down, causing it to more closely resemble the chemical and fuel properties of coal. This prevents the waste of excess lumber cuttings by converting it into a form where it can be utilized at coal-firing facilities and provide customers with electricity.
International WoodFuels LLC works primarily in Europe, where torrefaction has made more commercial progress than in the United States. They plan to ship the torrefied pellets produced by the North Carolina plant to Europe where there is a developed infrastructure for making use of the biomass fuel option. “Our choice of North Carolina was based on exceptional support from local, county and state agencies over the past year,” said President of International WoodFuels Steve Mueller. “Our company is excited about its selection of [Wilson County] for its first plant and we look forward to establishing additional production facilities in North Carolina to meet the increasing demand in Europe.” Mueller said North Carolina’s strong fiber supply, extensive rail network and exceptional port facilities make the state a reliable, cost-efficient choice for International WoodFuels, moving towards its mission to “decarbonize power generation by providing utilities with a clean, convenient, predictable, coal-replacement solution.”
By committing to development in the U.S., this organization is encouraging the nation’s coal-firing facilities to consider the new technology by making it visible to North Carolina’s companies and citizens. The new Wilson County plant represents the start of a solid foundation for a U.S. wood pellet biofuel infrastructure. Applaud International WoodFuels LLC for their work towards providing cleaner, effective energy generation to protect our environment.
Dear Governor McCrory,
The international energy company International WoodFuels LLC intends to construct a new wood chip recycling facility in Wilson County, North Carolina. The plant will process excess lumber cuttings lacking other commercial value through a process called torrefaction in which the biomass material is heated to up to 320 degrees Celsius in order to partially break down the organic structure of the wood before densifying the matter into wood pellets. These pellets will then be shipped to the emerging torrefaction infrastructure in Europe where they can be utilized by coal-firing facilities to generate electricity for customers. This method of generation not only prevents the waste of excess timber but is also cleaner than burning coal.
By expanding to the United States, International WoodFuels LLC is setting the foundation for a torrefaction infrastructure in the nation while making the new technology visible to this country’s companies and citizens. I urge you to applaud International WoodFuels LLC for setting a clean energy example in the U.S. and developing the first of many planned wood processing facilities in North Carolina.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: Hans via pixabay